Revisiting Reserved To Fight

Posted on November 11, 2010

In honor of Veterans Day, filmmaker Chantelle Squires Olsen updates BTB on some of the characters she profiled in her film Reserved To Fight. The documentary is available online for free until November 30. 

Since the premiere of Reserved To Fight, we have received numerous stories from veterans and their families who have been affected by this film. Bryan Catherman, a young veteran, shared his story with us: "I went to an early screening of Reserved To Fight. It was at that moment that I realized that I wasn't alone in my battle with my demons. The next day I walked into the VA to get help. It was this film that saved my marriage, my career, and even my life."


Although it was often difficult for the veterans to participate in the film, they have expressed that sharing their story with the world has helped give them a sense of purpose in the midst of their struggles.

Since the completion of Reserved To Fight, Mark Patterson has continued to work for the government as a civilian advisor to senior commanders in Iraq. Matt Jemmett, who used his passions for the wilderness as a way to process the experiences he had in Iraq, moved to the deserts of Utah and proudly serves his community as a Law Enforcement Ranger for the Forest Service in Southern Utah. Earl Simmons has continued on a path in the National Guard and he and his wife, Holli, are proud parents of two children. His family continues to support his commitment to the Armed Forces, specifically his career choice to be an Apache helicopter pilot. 

A year after Reserved To Fight was completed, Chris Nibley, who was working as a contractor in Iraq, decided that he wanted to start fresh with his life by cutting off communication with everyone from his past. We reconnected with Chris and learned that he has married and is now working on his college degree to support his new family. Reserved To Fight aired on PBS nationwide in 2008, since then it has been broadcast in nine countries around the world. It has screened in various film festivals across the nation, and has been utilized in military mental health symposiums, in the Salt Lake City VA, as well as the University of Utah student soldier’s integration program. The Montana National Guard also uses the film in their suicide prevention treatment program. 

We hope that more veteran groups will use this film to create the necessary dialogue of returning home. We are forever grateful to the veterans in this film for sharing their stories. We know that it was difficult at times, but the strength that their stories have given to so many, is immeasurable.


From our blog

  1. ITVS Welcomes Brandii Rice as Head of Business and Legal Affairs

    August 10, 2023

    ITVS is pleased to welcome Brandii Rice as our new Head of Business and Legal Affairs. In her role Rice will oversee business and legal affairs across the ITVS brand portfolio. In addition, she will guide licensing and business strategies to support ITVS’ content development, production, distribution and audience development goals. She will join ITVS

  2. Carrie Lozano Will Lead ITVS as President & CEO, Succeeding Sally Jo Fifer

    June 7, 2023

    Carrie Lozano joins ITVS from the Sundance Institute, where she served as director of Documentary Film and Artist Programs, supporting boundary-breaking filmmakers across the globe. At ITVS, she will continue to protect independent artists’ voices, editorial control and copyright while elevating nonfiction storytelling as an essential strategy

  3. Lisa Tawil Joins the International Board of INPUT

    June 1, 2023

    Discover how Lisa Tawil's appointment to the International Board of INPUT strengthens worldwide collaboration in public media.