St. Mary’s Ryken History Teacher Leif Liberg Chosen to Tell Stories of Fallen Heroes

Mr. Leif Liberg (history department) has been chosen along with eight other middle and high school educators to embark on a mission to memorialize eight service members of World War II who never made it home and to help invigorate World War II teaching in American classrooms.



Over the next nine months, Mr. Liberg, along with the other teachers will research the life and sacrifice of their chosen service member, called a Fallen Hero.


"Being selected to take part in this project is an amazing opportunity," said Mr. Liberg. "The program challenges us to look at World War II from multiple perspectives, provides amazing opportunities for research and travel, and allows us to develop lessons that will be published so that they can be used by educators across the country to teach about the war. Perhaps even more importantly, we get the chance to tell the life story of someone who didn't make it home from the war. These are people whose names would never appear in a history book, but whose service and sacrifice helped make a difference. It's an important reminder to each of us that great accomplishments are made possible by ordinary people like you and me."

In June 2019 the group will travel to Europe to continue their studies. Portions of the group will visit the East Coast Memorial in Battery Park, New York, Suresnes American Cemetery, Brittany American Cemetery, and Luxembourg American Cemetery. Along the way, the teachers will deliver a eulogy to their Fallen Hero at the respective burial or memorial sites. Sponsored by the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC), the program engages teachers with World War II research through primary and secondary sources, virtual lectures, and online discussions.


This advanced professional development program and these activities supports the development of the final products the teachers create: a lesson plan and a Fallen Hero profile. These materials will be published on in November 2019.




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