As we prepare to honor our nation’s service members this Veteran’s Day, BAE Systems proudly hosted a powerful film screening detailing the emotional sacrifices and personal challenges of 11 wounded warriors who embark on a life-changing journey up a 20,075-foot mountain peak in search of normalcy.
Close to 50 service members, military contractors and family members gathered in the Reel Time Patch Barracks Theater on post at the U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart in Germany for a screening of the award-winning documentary film, “High Ground.” The screening, hosted by BAE Systems and promoted on base by the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association-Stuttgart chapter, was made free to attendees.
“It was a great event that served as an important reminder of the sacrifices our nation’s real heroes make every day. I’m honored to go to work each day to support those who do so much to protect us.” Dan Baldi, Program Manager, BAE Systems’ Intelligence & Security sector
“High Ground” documents the unique personal stories of 11 combat veterans from separate branches of the military who unite to train and climb Nepal’s daunting Lobuche East peak, near Mount Everest. Despite their differences, each veteran shares one significant thing in common – each is coping with physical and emotional battle scars suffered while serving our country in Iraq and Afghanistan. The film chronicles each soldier’s uphill climb to overcome adversity and the challenges they face in returning to life as a civilian.
“The movie takes you on an emotional rollercoaster. One minute I was laughing, the next tearing up, and all along the way I kept getting goose bumps, it’s a phenomenal movie.” Belita Smith, Systems Administrator, BAE Systems
The veterans are joined by the mother of a soldier killed in action, who sought to join the trek in honor of her son. The expedition was organized by the veterans support organization, World T.E.A.M. Sports as part of its’ “Soldiers to the Summit” program.
The film was produced by the same director who chronicled blind adventurer Erik Weihenmayer's historic ascent of Everest a decade earlier. Weihenmayer returns for this film to join the veterans and share his words of wisdom and climbing advice.
In addition to a free movie, attendees were treated to a post-screening discussion with one of the veterans featured in the film, retired U.S. Army Captain, Aaron “Ike” Isaacson, a former combat engineer who served in Afghanistan alongside Afghan soldiers, and Matt Murray, the documentary film’s Co-Producer and a retired U.S. Air Force pilot who served in Desert Storm.
“The film is a touching story of personal triumph that perfectly encapsulates the strength and determination of our nation’s men and women who serve. It was an honor to shake the hand of Captain Isaacson and thank him for his service.” Bill Morrow, Systems Administrator, BAE Systems
The film won the Audience Award for Best Documentary at the Newport Beach Film Festival. “High Ground” is available on-demand and can be streamed from many websites, including Amazon, iTunes and Netflix.