WWII Vets Say TV Film Crew Disrespectful

Hawaii Five-O Filming CBS Show During Ceremony

Some Colorado World War II vets returned from Hawaii upset with how they were treated when they went to pay their respects to their fallen comrades last week.

Photos show crews from the hit CBS TV series "Hawaii Five-O" standing on the graves at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, also known as Punchbowl Cemetery.

Vets who had come to Hawaii for the Pearl Harbor Anniversary were granted time to walk among the grave markers and visit comrades killed in combat.

"Some of the fellows that I flew with and knew, they weren't buried there because they never found the bodies, but their names were carved in the wall," said Jim Doyle, of Lakewood.

Denver talk radio host Steffan Tubbs, who made the trip with the vets as a board member of The Greatest Generations Foundation, said the TV crew told the vets to be quiet and told them to hurry up.

"It was the fact they were being hushed and told "quiet we're rolling"," said Tubbs. "Then here comes a caterer with a plate of salmon and blackberries walking over the grave markers."

Tubbs said some of the vets were stopped from placing roses on the graves of unknown soldiers and were treated as if they were a nuisance.

“The whole staff at Hawaii Five-0, whether it be the directors or the support staff, were completely disrespectful to our survivors and those veterans,” said Timothy Davis, president and chief executive officer of The Greatest Generations Foundation.

He said of the 24 vets in the group, 23 were survivors of the Pearl Harbor attack. During a 20-minute graveside ceremony in which the national anthem and taps were played, the production crew continued to go about their business, Davis said.

The cemetery director said the vets' ceremony and the Five-O filming were scheduled an hour apart and it was the set-up crew that clashed with vets.

However, in a photo taken that day a crew member's hand can be seen trying to stop a photographer with the veteran's group from taking a photo of one of the actors walking among the graves.

"The fact that there are some out there that think this isn't that big of a deal or that it will go away, I think that is wrong and I think that says a lot about where we are as a society today," said Tubbs.

The CBS Facebook page has more than a dozen comments from viewers upset about how the veterans were treated.

Early Tuesday night CBS issued an apology.

"Contrary to some reports, to show respect, our crew did cease production for the playing of the national anthem, taps and for the remainder of the ceremony," said Peter Lenkov, executive producer. "When we resumed filming, we did encounter visitors from the ceremony. Any rudeness by our staff can only be attributed to haste to finish our work, not a lack of respect for men and women who have served and sacrificed for their country. And for that, too, we sincerely apologize to any that were offended."

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