By Bailey Faulkner
The High Country Lifelong Learners are inviting the public to attend a special presentation hosted by Francis Gary Powers, Jr. entitled “Operation Overflight: The True Story of Francis Gary Powers” at Sagebrush Steakhouse in Boone on Friday, April 14 at noon. The son of U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers, whom was shot down in his spy plane over the USSR in 1960, will shed light on the events surrounding his father and the climate of the United States and the world during the Cold War.
Guests wishing to order food for the presentation are encouraged to arrive at Sagebrush at around 11:15 a.m. before the presentation’s beginning just after noon. Seating will be limited to 40 guests and will operate on a first-come, first-served basis.
In honor of Cold War veterans and in order to preserve Cold War history and to educate younger generations, Francis Gary Powers, Jr. founded the Cold War Museum in Vint Hill, Virginia in 1996. His father, who is largely responsible for Powers, Jr.’s interest in the Cold War, was shot down over Russia during a CIA-led surveillance mission, later being captured and convicted of espionage by the USSR. His imprisonment and eventual release two years later at Berlin’s Glienicke Bridge captured the world’s interest during one of the most tense stages of the Cold War.
Recently, the events surrounding Powers’ capture and release were dramatized in Stephen Spielberg’s 2015 film Bridge of Spies. On Monday, May 8, the High Country Lifelong Learners will host a viewing of the film at the Watauga County Public Library. The viewing will be held at 2 p.m. in the library’s Meeting Room.
If you would like to learn more about Francis Gary Powers, you should attend the High Country Lifelong Learners meeting at Sagebrush Steakhouse next Friday. Copies of Powers, Jr.’s Operation Overflight: A Memoir of the U-2 Incident and James Donovan’s Strangers on a Bridge will be sold at the meeting.
If you have any questions about the upcoming HCLL meeting, feel free to contact the group at [email protected] You can also learn more about the screening of Bridge of Spies and the Watauga County Public Library by clicking here.
Mark your calendars for next Friday, April 14 — you won’t want to miss your chance to learn about this time in American history from the son of one of the most famous figures of the Cold War!