Filmmaker to share stories of courage in Sikh Temple documentary

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OAK CREEK -- The story of the Oak Creek Sikh Temple shooting can be divided into two parts -- the minutes of terror and violence, followed by a push for understanding, peace and healing. Valarie Kaur is a filmmaker who came to Oak Creek immediately following the tragedy. Kaur has been given access that news crews both local and national have not.

Kaur lost a friend -- Balbir Singh Sodhi shortly after September 11th.

"He was murdered in front of a gas station," Kaur said.

Sodhi was mistaken for a Muslim. Kaur, a third-generation Sikh-American was inspired to grab a camera, hit the road and tell the stories of other Sikhs who found themselves victims of hate and violence in a documentary called "Divided We Fall."

"Stories have the power to bind us, to break us, to make us human to one another," Kaur said.

Years after the documentary's release, Kaur found that work was just the beginning, after tragedy unfolded on a sunny Sunday morning in Oak Creek.

"The pain wasn't just the pain of Sikhs in Oak Creek. It was felt by really Sikhs across the nation," Kaur said.

The August 5th shooting inspired Kaur to travel to Oak Creek with her camera crew and tell the stories of courage.

"A rising resilience, even in the face of darkness. It's been incredibly impressive to be able to witness that and to be able to document that," Kaur said.

Kaur and her crew were granted access no news crews were allowed, and the outpouring of support that makes the film project different from the first one following 9/11 and the death of Kaur's friend.

"We are just listening closely to how this story needs to be told, even if we're still capturing it," Kaur said.

Kaur and her husband, Sharat Raju remain in Oak Creek filming this week.

CLICK HERE to follow Valarie Kaur on Twitter for the latest updates.

CLICK HERE to view the website for Kaur's current project.

CLICK HERE to view the website for Kaur's 9/11 film.

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