Dewayne Bontrager's military film Goodman's Salute was voted Best Patriotic Film at the Milledgeville Film Festival, chosen out of over 80 entries.
The short film is based on a little boy who has to personally embrace saying goodbye to his father after he died in war. The film respectfully brings attention to the sentimental realization of how war can affect a child. Bontrager filmed the movie to honor his close deceased veteran friend Edmund “The Colonel” Hughes.
Many military figures remarked on the touching and powerful themes of the film, such as Troy Wright, Iraq Veteran: “This film brings home emotions about the impact of war and loss of life. It’s touching and honors the fallen and their families.” Brigadier General Norm Ham, USAF retired, called the film “a heart felt tribute to all of our veterans and a reminder to all Americans that freedom is not free,” while Leigh Stewart, granddaughter of a severely wounded WWII soldier, remarked, “This film is a compelling reminder of the ultimate sacrifices people have made and gives a glimpse into the reality for many families. A reminder of eternal gratitude owed, makes me proud of my grandfather’s generation.” Greg Hiebert, former Major and US Army Infantryman, West Point Graduate, called the film “a wallop of emotion to show the incredible sacrifice of those men and women who have paid with their lives. We should all be reminded of out heroes’ valiant sacrifice.”