Kieran FitzgeraldKieran Fitzgerald was only 17 years old in 1997 when a team of Marines shot and killed an innocent American citizen on the Texas-Mexico border. The film, narrated by Tommy Lee Jones, recounts the shooting and killing of a young American named Esequiel Hernández in 1997 by U.S. Marines patrolling the border as part of a counterdrug operation that had been ongoing since the late 1980s.

In our interview with Kieran, he tells us why he felt it was important to bring public attention back to this story:

I wanted to recover this story that had been lost from our recent history, and so I started interviewing people along the border, and seeking out the various parties involved in the story, including the FBI, the marines, and the family of Esequiel Hernández. I wanted to get a comprehensive account of the story.

Read more from Kieran’s interview, and learn how he gained the trust of the film’s subjects, or listen to our extended podcast interview.

Do you have a question for Kieran about The Ballad of Esequiel Hernández and how the war on drugs has affected life along the Texas-Mexico border? You can submit it in the comment field below. He’ll choose a selection of questions to respond to, so check back here after the film airs to see what he has to say.

7/16/08 Update: Unfortunately, Kieran Fitzgerald is no longer available to answer viewer questions. Kieran chose a number of questions from the comments below and answered them on the POV Blog the week following the broadcast. See what he had to say.

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Catherine Jhee was formerly a producer with POV Interactive.