Memorial Day...

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Clearwater AL

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To Remember friends of mine I worked with in Viet Nam… 1st Field Forces along the Tri Border (Cambodia, Laos, Viet Nam) 1968 – 1969)

John Evensizer, Mack McKagan, John Dashnaw. RIP

Maybe other members will post the names of loved ones, relatives or friends who served and have their names remembered for this Memorial Day.

And what war/conflict they are to be remembered for.
 

Narrowminded

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My FIL served in Korea, don’t know the exact dates. Remembering him and all those who gave their lives for us in all the various conflicts.
 

Chincoteaguer

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Hi Al

Very good of you to remember your friends this Memorial Day weekend.

Did not have close friends who served in Viet Nam but had an interesting situation with a not well liked company commander and executive officer who went there and lost their lives.

The interesting part is that their names are not on the wall nor are any records available that recognized their sacrifice.

I have had military folks research this with no results.

One Admiral suggested that our government did not want to publicize that there were nuclear qualified field officers in Viet Nam.

They both were at Sandia Base where I served for three years and received nuclear training there.

Not suppose to talk about theses things but I'm too old to care

Ernie.
 

KateEmerson

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My father served our country in WW2 at 18 years old. He was in the Pacific at the battles of Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Thank you Al for helping me remember his sacrifice and all the other young men who have done so. Kate
 

KimT

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My dad served in the Navy in WW2. My brother served in the Army right after the Korean War.

Dad drove a PT boat. He survived the war but not without extreme PTSD. He would never talk about the things he saw and did.

My childhood friend lost her son in the middle east during his third deployment. His name was Dane Venne.

God bless those on this board who have served our Country.

I talked with my brother today and he said he went to the graves in our small village and put flowers on some of our cousins' graves who lost their lives during the wars.
 

Chincoteaguer

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Had an uncle who served against the Japanese. I was told he was diagnoised as "shell shocked". Another term for PTSD.

He was a prince of a man but would occasionally go bananas. Did not do violence. He just rambled on about weird things.

My dad, who also served told me that this uncle survived a Japanese bayoneting of wounded and dying men lying in an open field.

I often think of Uncle Delmas on this holiday. He and many went through hell to support what our country is all about.

Thank you all who served.

Ernie
 

MarieLaure

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As a Frenchwoman I am very thankful to all the Us soldiers who fought WW2.
When we visited the American cemetery in Normandy when the boys were small my youngest son, who was just learning to write wrote “ thank you for freeing us. Even I who am very brave would have been afraid “
We think of all those soldiers, most of whom were so young, and their families.
 

Clearwater AL

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Marie, we must also thank and remember the French Resistance who put themselves at tremendous risk and those who died helping the Allies free France.

And... the Australians I worked with in Viet Nam.

But today is the day we remember ours who made the ultimate sacrifice.
 
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MarieLaure

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Of course we honor all the allies. A short while ago was special Remembrance Day for the Australian troops. We think of all of them from really all parts of the world.
 

Atsugi

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Good thread, Al. Thanks.

I'll only mention a few of the people closest to me.

1. Infantryman Pvt Al Greene of Brooklyn: POW in Italy. Continued to serve in Korea, and Vietnam, (when he returned from VN, he mostly sat silently in a little boat ignoring his fishing rod, nursing a single warm beer. He raised our family to be patriotic and religious and he later taught school as a second career.

He kept his emotions deep inside, like a good Catholic boy. But I remember the only time he ever raised his voice in the house. Mom had said to someone "It’s character building--everyone should have to suffer in their lifetime” and he stood up to put his foot down: "No, they don't,” he said firmly.

After his Army career, he started another career teaching grade school students who were special discipline problems.

Eventually the brain injuries from his capture event finally caught up to him in his 80s, so he spent the last 5 years of his life in a VA hospital, silently staring at the wall.

2. Bright, smiling, and energetic USAF Captain Kristine Wills, who excelled at everything she did but she had never been on a date. She was dedicated to her patients, and had no patience with staff who would leave at 5 o'clock when there was still a patient in her exam room. During the Gulf War, she was eager to go in to the Landstuhl Army hospital at midnight to help a sick or wounded soldier. She enjoyed helping in birthing soldier's babies on a Saturday. She honestly never understood why everyone on the staff wasn't totally dedicated to the patients.

I could see deeper inside her than most men had, and found her travels, experiences, knowledge and attitude fascinating, so I asked her for a date. Over the next 20 years, she gave me two perfect children. In 2010, a couple of days after Christmas, I watched a neurologist say "ALS" to her. I had never seen her cry before that moment. That was her last Christmas. Later, the VA decided her ALS was connected to the Gulf War somehow.

3. When I was a child on Army posts around the world, I overheard my father's conversations. Many began, “Hey Joe, where you been? Haven’t seen you since we are in Europe!. Hey, do you remember our old buddy? Where is he now?”

Those conversations often ended with, “Sorry Al, he was last seen trudging through a ditch near Nui Ba Den, carrying a wounded Vietnamese over his right shoulder and firing his M-16 with his left hand.” No one’s seen him since.

That particular conversation was about Art Elliott. I played with his kids. His wife often cooked dinner for our family after my Dad and I and Art and his boys finished working bailing hay. After Nam, we were sure he was dead. Everyone thought he was dead. But in fact, he was marched at gunpoint, barefoot, up to a prison in the north, where he spent 1000 days. After release, he too, continued serving in the Army afterward.
 

Clearwater AL

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As we close out this Memorial Day I have taken exception to the political speeches given today where soldiers, men and women, still with us were honored.

Yes, they are heroes.

But, today is supposed to be a day where we remember those no longer with us.

Memorial Day.

One speech spent most of the time acknowledging soldiers still with us…for applause purposes with the speaker extending the clapping as for himself.

Gold Star Families were mentioned once.

Veterans Day is for those still with us.

Maybe it’s time Veterans Day be moved to a Monday and be an official Federal Holiday with closings.

Drop Columbus Day to keep it at 9… more and more evidence is coming to light Columbus wasn’t the first.
 
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