ESCANABA, Mich. (WJMN) – A group of veterans from different generations sat on a panel Wednesday afternoon at Bay College Library.

Veterans Speak! is a story-telling dialogue event hosted by the Bay College Civics Corps in partnership with the Escanaba Public Library and Great Lakes Peace Center.

“We’ve basically gathered veterans from World War II all the way to up to currently serving area, Generation Z,” said Hunter Anderson, member of the Civics Corps. “We’re going to have them share their experience with the military [such as] how/why they got to serve, and just hear their personal story about the military and just see their own personal life experience.”

A Korean War veteran recalled a significant moment during his service in the U.S. Navy.

“Our task group was given the job of taking the Korean and Chinese prisoners who had been on this island prison camp back to Korea to be repatriated, traded for the American prisoners,” said Dave Schaaf. “They somehow didn’t accept the fact that the war was over. We found what we had to do was take the cargo holds of the ships and use two-by-fours and chicken wire and build small pens that would hold just four men at a time.”

Karissa Sliva currently serves as a combat engineer for the U.S. Army National Guard. She shared what inspired her to join the military.

“I was just in awe of veterans, I thought they were just amazing people and soldiers so I was like ‘why shouldn’t I do it, then?’ So, I joined, and I always like to push myself and get out of my comfort zone, so I thought that was a perfect way to do that.”

There will be a second Veterans Speak! event on November 19 at 1 p.m. EST at the Escanaba Public Library.