‘Welcome Home’ play adds context, voice to history

Published 1:53 pm Saturday, January 28, 2023

There’s a “world premiere” of an important theatrical production this weekend at the Natchez Little Theatre, and we think you need to see it.

“Welcome Home, Soldier” was written by local author and fledgling playwright G. Mark LaFrancis.

The production is based loosely on the life of a well-known World War II soldier and Battle of the Bulge survivor who lived in Adams County, and its message of valor and humility will ring true for all who see it.

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More important, this production continues to capture and share the history of what we’ve come to know as The Greatest Generation. These men, and women, proudly stepped up to defend their nation and freedom and in doing so helped establish the United States as not only a superpower but a global force for good. Their selfless commitment to the cause embodied the definitions of integrity and honor, and their stories – however humble – give a glimpse into their character and their world views.

Preserving stories such as this for today and for future generations is critical. While the soldier whose story is loosely retold in LaFrancis’ play is no longer here, his wisdom can be shared with today’s audiences and with audiences in future generations, thanks to this work. And that can help add context and meaning to history, humanizing the facts and helping provide understanding for future generations.

Show times for the play are at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday and 2 p.m. on Sunday, and admission is $15 for all ages, and $10 for active duty and military veterans. WWII veterans can attend for free.

We hope you’ll make time for this play this weekend and time to learn more about LaFrancis’ work documenting and sharing the voices of WWII veterans.

It’s a story we all need to hear.