Today Private Sandy Hess, my father, would be 87 years old, if he were still living on earth. He’s been gone for almost 23 years now. So much has happened in space exploration since 1946 when he was assigned to ‘Project Paperclip’ and worked on the V2 Project at Fort Bliss & White Sands Missile Range. This week’s successful Space X launch and the development of the Spaceport in New Mexico is a huge leap from the V2 rockets he watched being tested when he was a 21 year old kid.
Discovering the letters he wrote home to his parents in NYC has been an incredible gift, and making this film is an amazing adventure for both Patricia and myself. I’m so happy that I get to tell this story about my father; both honoring him and celebrating what he always encouraged me to do- ask questions and pursue the truth. I hope that in making this film we’ll be able to make transparent alliances and realities that have been somewhat obscured through time and memory. The intersections of history and science, the Holocaust and Space Exploration, personal, familial and cultural truths come together in our documentary.
Sanford Oscar Hess may not be with us on earth, but he is alive and well in our hearts and minds. Though my father’s young grandsons Oscar and Jonathan never met him, they now have the opportunity to know young 21 year old Sandy through our film. Private Sandy’s spirit is with us today, guiding us in making this documentary. On the big screen he’ll live well past his 64 years here.
Peace and Love, Daughter/Filmmaker, Melinda Hess