A man who has made it his quest to interview every living World War II veteran admitted Tuesday in an interview that he learned more from interviewing the veterans than anything he learned in school.
Rishi Sharma, the 20-year-old founder of Heroes of the Second World War, told Fox & Friends First on Tuesday that when he started the nonprofit group in high school, he discovered that nothing in the classroom could replace the life lessons he learned from the veterans.
“If I wanted to get in touch with some kind of useless celebrity, I would have to go through a thousand people,” Sharma said. “But to talk to someone who literally helped save the world, I can just call them.”
“I started ditching class to go do interviews because I was learning more from the veterans than [when] I was in school,” Sharma added.
Sharma told Fox & Friends First that his goal was to interview two to three World War II combat veterans each day until the last one dies. His interviews are pretty in-depth, sometimes lasting for up to six hours, according to Sharma’s website.
“The interviews are filmed but there is absolutely no commercial aspect to this as I just provide a DVD for the veteran’s use,” the website states.
Sharma began his quest two years ago when he wanted to meet the veterans who risked their lives to fight for the freedom many Americans take advantage of today. At that time, he launched a fundraising page on GoFundMe to pay for his travels. As of Wednesday afternoon, Sharma has raised more than $186,000.
“The fact that we can dream about what we want to do 30, 40, 50 years down the road is such a blessing that people don’t realize,” Sharma said.