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Author: Lee Matz

Every day is a bonus: Local veterans take inspirational journey to DC on Honor Flight’s 61st mission

© PHOTO NOTE: All the editorial images published here have been posted to the Milwaukee Independent’s Facebook Page. The 61st mission of the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight embarked on April 23, taking 112 local veterans on a once-in-a-lifetime day trip to visit the nation’s capital. Two Allegiant Airlines A320 aircraft, referred to as Alpha and Bravo, left Milwaukee’s Mitchell International Airport with the veterans and their guardians. Of the 112 retired soldiers who made the journey, one had served in World War II, six in the Korean War, and 105 in the Vietnam War. The youngest veteran was...

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An advocate for Irpin: How Boris Nayflish searched for his Ukrainian roots and found a Sister City

Milwaukee was founded as a city of immigrants, with traditions embedded into the culture and passed down for generations. The population grew in 19th century, as industrious people from predominately European nations sought better economic opportunities. But by the 20th century, the influx of immigrants came as a matter of survival for many who sought refuge after being displaced by a war. With each ethnic wave to arrive, Milwaukee neighborhoods took on the distinct flavor of a distant homeland that had been left behind. Industry first made Milwaukee an international city, while its later economic loss exposed entrenched racial...

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Cavalier Johnson: A photographic retrospective from before becoming Milwaukee’s first elected Black Mayor

It would be overly dramatic and an inaccurate stretch to say that I always knew Cavalier Johnson would become Mayor of Milwaukee. But from the beginning I had the feeling that he was going somewhere special in his political career. In my early career as a photojournalist in Milwaukee, I really enjoyed not knowing who people were. It allowed me to focus on anyone, regardless of social rank or station, to capture their humanity in images. In the years since, I have obviously learned more about who is who in the city, which is an unfortunate necessity for prioritizing...

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