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"Once you put up the camera and take pictures, you feel like you’re bulletproof, but of course you’re not." (Video interview, 25:58)

   William Jerome Bell
Collection image
William Bell [3/2009]
War: Vietnam War, 1961-1975
Branch: Army
Unit: 362nd Signal Company
Service Location: Vietnam
Rank: Sergeant First Class
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Signing up for a second tour in Vietnam in order to support his young family, William Bell spent his time in-country as a motion picture photographer. From behind the lens, he saw all that the war in the countryside had to offer: ambushes, napalm drops, and casualties. Witnessing such atrocities convinced him of the futility of the Vietnam War--but his time there also honed his skills and taught him what he was capable of accomplishing.

Interview (Video)
»Interview Highlights  (2 clips)
»Complete Interview 
Download: video (36 min.)
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»Military Photographers: Framing the Shot
 Video (Interview Excerpts) (2 items)
Working on a film about Vietnamese soldiers; using ex-VC as actors and live ammunition. (01:34) Filming napalm being dropped; watching machine guns destroy an area; being shot at while filming; seeing people hit. (03:53) 

Home » William Jerome Bell
  The Library of Congress  >> American Folklife Center
  October 26, 2011
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