Welcome to Odie's Site Comments Page.
Comments are listed in the order they were received.
Thanks you all for your kind words and encouragement.
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Comments are listed in the order they were received.
Memorial Day, 2012
When I first constructed this page in 1997, every web site listed had an active link. Unfortunately as time has passed, most of these web sites no longer exist. However, I still list them as an indication of the sentiments and values of all those involved in trying to get a full accounting for our Vietnam POW/MIA.
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|Please add your comments, positive or negative, before you leave!|
From Willie G. Dougherty at Veterans Voice of Austin on 4/8/97
"As a fellow Nam Vet, know too well you are on target. Welcome Home Brother!!
From Daryl Stogner at Voice on the Net on 4/8/97
"For over 25 years, I sat around in the fog just as you have done. I was recently pulled
from my silence by a fellow vet at the Vietnam Veterans of Austin website. My arrival home was not
met by demonstrators but by businessmen on an airplane from Ft Lewis, WA. who refused to let me sit next
to them. I didn't understand what I had done, then? Now I know, it's what they had done, that was
wrong! And now another veteran pops up who feels the same as I. Thanks,
I needed the company."
From Tom Hays on 4/8/97
"Just saw your web site. Looks good to me. I will have to come back and spend more
From Edward J. Brockman at 319th Bomb Group WW2 on 4/8/97
"I think that you have a terrific page, glad that you come out of the shell. Would like
to link you to our page above. Look the old timers up. Thanks, Brock"
From Bruce C. Hill on 4/8/97
"Couldn't agree with you more regarding the dismal/pathetic lack of progress on the POW /MIA
From Mike Higgs at Welcome Home on 4/13/97
"Great site, "Daiwee"!! You have expressed opinions and thoughts that are rarely
seen but commonly shared by many veterans of the Vietnam WAR (I refuse to say "conflict" for that
word better depicts the war we all fought when we came home, not the WAR we fought in SE Asia.) I would
like to invite you to take a bunk in the officers quarters on my site (no charge, of course.) Again,
I must commend you on this site, sir. How did that quote go? ... "To those who fought for it,
FREEDOM has a flavor that the protected will never know." Ain't it the truth, brother? Ain't
it the truth! Higgy"
From Francis G. Jones, MSgt, USAFR on 4/13/97
"I was only half way through the page before the emotions started coming on. Your web page
is great!!!!!! All the feelings that are usually kept hidden are revealed. Reading a page like
this actually makes one feel proud for being in the military."
From John Averell on 4/14/97
"I can't speak personally about the Vietnam experience. I am 62 years old and missed
both Korea (grad school deferments) and Vietnam (a family by then). However, I want you to know
that I appreciate all that you guys did for us, and what you sacrificed both physically and emotionally
for our country.
From Jeff Kaufman on 4/14/97
"I must tell *you* that this is a beautiful site! I have what I feel is an idea of what it took
for you to construct this from your soul, but I think no one can really understand. I will keep this short
and just say that I am proud to know you, and to have known you as long as I have. I will be pointing
others to your site.
From Mike Arguin on 4/15/97
"Congrats on such an inspiring site! My dad was in the National Guard and was activated during
the Vietnam War. Fortunately for me (and our family), he didn't see any duty over- seas. As it was,
our time together was far too short. (He died three years ago today, at the age of 55.) I don't know
what we would have done if he went there and didn't come back. I'd like to wish you and all the vets of
any war or conflict a hearty
From Judy Anderson on 4/15/97
"Your page shows thought, courage, pain, and rebirth. I, too, think it's shameful how our vets
were treated upon their return. While I was too young to be able to do much, I did what I could. I
was one of the lucky ones who got to see the man whose POW/MIA bracelet I wore get off the plane and kiss the
ground. Major Glendon E. Perkins was his name. I bought the bracelet from his mother. I've
also been in the reserve component for nearly 20 years. I went the NCO route, and am now the equivalent
of a 1SG--not bad for someone who put up with her superiors getting nose-to-nose and saying they didn't think
women should be in the military. Anyway, I'm glad you were able to come to terms with how you felt about
your service and about the "reception" you got (and still get, I'm sure). More voices, combined
in conviction, may finally be heard."
From Joseph J. Ferraro, Jr on 4/15/97
"I just want to say thank you. I served in the U.S. Coast Guard '72-'73. Early out
for medical. I didn't have the opportunity to serve in Viet Nam but served during. As a member
of the armed forces during that time we were warned not to leave base in uniform. I was proud of that
uniform. Yet at the same time I was questioning the uniform. It is not until now that I understand
my questions. I have no answers but I understand why.
From Dave Hopkins on 4/15/97
"Thank you Sir. When trying to explain Viet Nam (USN - Da Nang - 1970) and the years afterward,
I always have trouble assembling the words to convey what's in my mind and heart. Thankfully there are people,
like yourself, that can put the emotions into some kind of order that makes so much sense."
From Jim E. Lauer on 4/16/97
" I loved your page. It shows a lot of heart. I do disagree with one point you made.
You said: "Furthermore, welcoming me and other Vietnam Vets home twenty-five years later in a
parade honoring another generation of heroes only rubbed salt in an old wound. (Write to me and I'll
gladly explain why I feel this way.)" When the Desert Storm vets came home, there were a lot of
folks buying them drinks at the local watering holes. After some conversation they found out I was in
during Nam (I never got to the country, stopped trying after the third attempt), and wouldn't accept another
drink from me. Insisted on buying mine. I do believe their service and victory legitimized our
service in the eyes of a lot of people. When I read this note through again, I realize it is not quite
saying what I am trying to get across. I hope you pick up the thoughts behind the words. Again,
a great page. I'll be back, and sending friends also."
From Wendy W. Houston on 4/16/97
"I just saw your web page, and like it a lot. Good luck and God bless."
From Mike Coleman on 4/16/97
"I just wanted to say thanks for taking the time to write your page. I was born in 1967,
so I am not even old enough to remember the Vietnam War. My dad served during that time, but never had to
go into SE Asia, so the conflict never touched my home. I grew up in a "hippie" household,
and never had much usage for patriotism or the armed forces. However, about 5 years ago I went to
Washington DC for a work-related conference. Standing there in front of the Declaration of Independence,
the Lincoln Memorial, the White House and all those national treasures really changed the way I thought about
what was right and what was wrong. I can honestly say it fundamentally altered my political beliefs.
However, nothing could have prepared me for what I felt when I went to the Wall. You see those
names, all those lives, and you realize that everyone on that wall was _at least_ someone's son or daughter.
That everyone there had a mother and a father who loved them, not to mention husbands/wives, children,
grandparents, aunts, uncles cousins, friends and colleagues. It was unbelievable the emotion I felt.
At that point I realized how wrong it was to ever minimize the debt that all veterans are owed for the
services they've provided to our country. Great work and thanks."
From R. Bruce McKinney, LtCol (s), USAF at Sportster's Page on 4/16/97
"I missed VietNam by 10 days; however, saw, indeed, still see what you, and your comrades have done for
us. My goal on active duty is to honor folks like you and your predecessors. Unfortunately, we can do
our best while the immorality of our elected officials can negate our honorable efforts--we all must continue to
stand up AND speak up for what is right. Your page certainly does that my friend."
From Robert P. Smith on 4/16/97
From R.B. Deal ENCM USN (Ret.) on 4/16/97
"You put into words and images thoughts that are hard and often impossible to express, esp. to those
who haven't lived through the whole experience. Also, it was my son, who was born while I was there that
gave me this site address."
From Jim Felsecker on 4/16/97
"Great site, SIR.
From Michael M Mason on 4/17/97
"I visited your Web page after the URL was posted on the rec.motorcycles.harley news- group. I was very impressed by your site, and I posted this message on the newsgroup:
Thanks for the URL: it's a very moving site. Since I'm English and posting from the UK, my opinion on the Vets may be irrelevant or perhaps unwelcome. But I cannot help feeling that, whatever the rights or wrongs of the conflict itself, the sacrifices of the dead, the missing and the vets are something which America should celebrate - not something it should ignore in the vain and stupid hope that the war will be forgotten.
In the UK we have Remembrance
Day, also called "Poppy Day" because we wear paper poppies which symbolise the dead of the two world
wars. When I was younger I disliked Remembrance Day because I thought it celebrated war - and I was firmly
opposed to the idea of war. Now I realise what it's really all about, and that the very last thing it does
is celebrate war. In the end you have just two choices: remember or forget. As you probably gathered,
I'm English; I'm forty-one, never been in the forces and never likely to be, thanks in no small part to the efforts
of men like yourself. Although the Viet Nam war had precious little impact on life in the UK, as a war
veteran you have earned my respect."
From Eric Freilich on 4/17/97
"I want to say Welcome Home. Thank you for giving us the ability to be free and making this
the greatest country on earth. Thanks again."
From Jeffrey S. Baylor on 4/17/97
"I wanted to thank you for the time, emotion and thought that you put in to your page. I am a gulf
vet (11B2) and my older brother is a vet also, his wife and my younger brother are still in. I was the first
of my family to serve since the civil war, and my brothers followed suit. We are all very proud of our service,
the service of those before us and of the country for which we served. It is great to see patriotism on the
net! Thanks, again."
From Bill Grannis on 4/17/97
"The year was 1970 and having to leave a 2 month old baby and a wife for a year in RVN was traumatic.
I made it through with only a scratch patrolling rivers in I Corp for the green Navy, Army Boats.
Returning home I didn't look for bands and parades, just my family. Only a few protesters hassled me
for the first few years home. I buried my feelings and experiences as most of my friends never served in the
military. Twenty some years later I was standing in the cold watching a St. Patrick's Day parade in Savannah
Georgia right after Desert Storm. Tanks, APC's, Duece and a halves, HumVees, and soldiers marched up the
street to the cheers of the crowd. An APC spun a donut in front of me and the spectators cheered. My
other half looked at me and saw the tears running down my face and was shocked. I am not the sensitive '90s
type of guy. I tried to explain how happy I was that the public was cheering for the military and how it
warmed my heart. She of course did not understand, and my explanations were meaningless. Yet I was
happy inside and the tears flowed freely after being bottled up all those years. Since then I attend
Memorial Day services in the park and feel a lot better about myself. I even told my grown sons a little
about the war. This Saturday in Melbourne Florida the Moving Wall is on display. I will be there.
I just had to tell someone this story, I hope you all understand."
From Dave Strang on 4/18/97
"Nice site.....I just wanted to say congrats on confronting the real enemy...the demons within
.....and starting the healing process. That has to be the hardest fight of all. You, and all other
Vets as well, have my utmost respect for what you had to endure for this country. Hat's off to you &
don't let the morons get you down....."
From Alan Waln on 4/18/97
"I also share so many of your feelings and anguish. I was a Sergeant in the Air Force in the
5th Air Commando Group, assigned to the 1/9 1st Cav from Mar 67 til Mar 68, as a FAC. Last fight was tet in
Hue. When I came home I was discharged. For many years I denied that I ever was a veteran and lied
about my service. The treatment we were afforded when we returned still makes me very angry and sad.
I did pick up my life and the GI Bill helped me become a lawyer. I now belong to a motorcycle club
consisting of Vietnam Veterans and immensely enjoy their friendship and camaraderie. WELCOME HOME and
thanks for the site"
From Samuel G. Clark on 4/18/97
"I have spent many years wondering why I came home and many friends never made it. Being a
disabled vet I also wonder why we still get the fake plastic treatment from many people in our country. I
got it better than most vets because the VA takes good care of me. The only person I trust is my wife.
She lived the hate stuff while I was in country, and is still putting up with my don't trust attitude
toward most people. Like your site very much and will return to it for a shot of I'm not alone serum
from time to time."
From Lynn Anderson-Fontenot on 4/18/97
"I want to thank you for creating this site. I lost my father to the war when I was just to turn
1, so I have little/no memory of him. Pictures of his childhood don't answer the question I have (what he was
really like); but your site; & the others; are starting to at least ease the pain of loss & fill in the
emptiness I have had for just over 30 years. GOD BLESS YOU & THE OTHERS!"
From Pat Robinson on 4/19/97
"God bless all of you, welcome home, and thanks....."
From Leslie Franks on 4/19/97
"I don't remember the Vietnam War, I was far to young as I was born in '65. My fiance however
fought in Vietnam and he like you still retains a lot of hurt from that war. When he came home he told
me he threw his rifle in the ocean. It took him many years before he picked up another gun. To this
day he very seldom speaks of Vietnam, I only thank God that he came home unharmed and safe. I think your
page is great as there are so many who have no idea what it was to go through that war and still live with the
horror and shame they were welcomed home with. I hope you will allow me to put your link on my homepage.
We are members of Patriots M/C all of whom are Veterans of Vietnam and many younger veterans of whom
have been in other areas of the world where unrest is so prevalent. I am sure our members would very much enjoy
your page as much as I have. Being so close to one who fought in Vietnam reading this page has brought me
to tears. And I will always know the shame of our country not giving every man and women who fought there
the right of coming home heros. As in my heart everyone is. Thanks for doing a lot of good. Sorry
this is so long, but I have never been able to speak with my fiance so frankly. But I am very proud of him
and all who sacrificed."
From Thomas O. Malmevik on 4/19/97
"I am a vet of that era though never got sent to Nam (1970-73). Your home page is right on and a
tribute to all who served. It shows your humanity and a glimmer of the conflict you must have felt within.
When I returned from Germany in '73 the people were still at the airports screaming the first amendment
rights..the rights that all vets helped to preserve. Too bad they were so blind. Good luck to you and
yours and keep this page active."
From Thomas L. Brizendine on 4/19/97
"After all these years, we are the ones who gave a welcome home to each other. We STILL are called
"Baby Killers" by some of the "enlightened" people. I was a Platoon SGT/LDR in Nam, and it
made me so angry to see and hear what my men were called when they came home. Signs on lawns saying: Dogs and
Soldiers Keep off! Frustrated to no end!"
From R. E. Sullivan, Ph.D., Col., USMC (Ret.) on 4/20/97
"While you were with the 1stCav., I was commanding the northern sector of the Chu Lai TAOR as CO 1/4
3dMarDiv. That was my third war. May I suggest that, if possible, under WW II that you show not just
the ribbon for the Victory Medal, but the theater ribbons as well (ie. European, Asiatic-Pacific, and American)?
Have found that here in Corpus Christi no one knows what the Asiatic-Pacific looks like any more. You
might also include the China Service since we did do some fighting there which, so far, we have not had to do
in Bosnia. We split out on the POW issue. Guess I spent too many years in the Orient to believe, as
much as I want to do, that any of those guys are alive. You're never going to get NVN to account for any
atrocities they may have committed after granting them de jure recognition. Great site! Wish everyone
in the country agreed with your brand of patriotism. Respectfully, "Sully"."
From Larry Powell
"I've checked your site and it looks great. I'll check back from time to time to see how it
grows. Good Luck..."
From Coy R. Cook on 4/23/97
"I have looked over your pages and will be proud to include them in my list of links to POW/ MIA Sites.
I have to agree with "Gunny"; Yours is one of the best I have seen. I, like you, had never
seen or heard of "Operation Just Cause" until my wife stumbled across Gunny's site and sent me the URL,
telling me that this was something I might be interested in. (She's away in school at Va. Tech. How
right she was.) That was on 9 April 97. I contacted Gunny, got the info, spent the night building the
first edition of my page, and published it on 10 April. To be "honest" about it, I had thought that
I was just about over my feelings for that Stinking War, but they all came flooding back like gangbusters when I
read Gunny's page! I am in the process of building a new one at the moment but this is slow work for me.
I just started learning HTML in February and don't know my butt from a hole in the ground about it! But
I'm learning. Keep in touch Brother. Hope to hear from you again, Russ"
From Mark Harlan at Mark's Home Page on 4/24/97
From Joe Oliver at The Hanoi Hilton and Other POW Camps on 4/24/97
"Can't list all the reasons that you're right on the mark!"
From Ben Youmans on 4/25/97
"WELCOME HOME BROTHER!"
From Dave Girod on 4/26/97
"USN 65-75,1st class radioman, SVN 67-68. I have worn the name of PFC John Will Roberson,
lost 6-22-69 overwater, for over 20 years now. I had electric shock therapy once; that was the only
time the bracelet has been off of my wrist. Good luck."
From Jeanette Quigley on 4/27/97
"Great Web Site-I have to say it is the best I have seen yet. I am the wife of a Nam Vet. He
like you tried to hide his service to the world until 1989 when I paid for an Encampment at Camp Smith, N.Y.
and made him attend. He was with the 4th Inf. Div, 4th Eng. Bn, Pleiku Province 7/66-7/67. We continue
to show our appreciation of his service and are proud of him. Your views hit home with me because they are
the very feelings expressed by many of your fellow veterans all the time particularly at our home. Anyway,
its good to know that people like yourself that will continue to educate on what you know and hopefully our
country can clean up its act before we lose more. Welcome Home to you and yours and thank you for your
military service and continued effort to wake up this country of ours. God Bless and don't give up the
fight because it ain't over yet."
From Joe F. Casal at Dien Cau Dau Express on 4/30/97
"Great home page !!"
From James McCreary Sr. on 5/3/97
"Beautiful work. I'm a 100% service-connected Vietnam veteran. I am getting into all
phases of veterans affairs and the POW/MIA issue. I'm a real pain in the butt on the computer and I
make people listen. Once again your page is a real American beauty. Have to tell ya I had to
write the Boy Scout about his letter about our flag. Welcome Home Bro!"
From Phil Osborne at Veterans' Assistance Homepage At Southeast Missouri State University on 5/5/97
"I think you are on target because I believe in the same things as you. I think what you said
regarding how well prisoners have it compared to how many of our vets are left unaided and unattended in the
alleys, slums, and park benches of America, is as true as it can be."
From Jim Burke on 5/11/97
"Right on target with just one round in the 9 ring instead of 10. The Gulf War was a continuation
of our war with the people wearing the stars having fought in RVN. I'm glad your wife provided you with the
opportunity to confront your past. Your family will always be stronger now that you are whole again.
Great page and it is a truly moving experience. Welcome home! Jim Burke U.S.M.C./III MAF
From Gene Kuentzler at 19th Combat Engineer Battalion on 5/12/97
"You have a very interesting site! I noticed you were 2/17th Arty with the 1st Cav. 19th
guys have a very high regard for 1st Cav. We were moved to north of Bong Son in June 67 to what was known
as LZ English North, just 1/2 click south of Tam Quan. Sometime around July 67 an Arty unit moved in with
us and would do H&E about 2300 hrs or 0200. It always seemed that the area where we were sleeping in
our shallow dug sleeping holes was directly in the path of the concussion. WoW! What a way to wake-up!
While the Cav was providing our security, we had relief in just moments. My crew was ambushed on 11
Aug 67, before the NVA were able to overun our position a Cav gunship was right above my crew and we had no
casualties. I left in Aug 67. Later, around Feb 68 the Cav was moved further North and 173rd was to
provide security. On 22 July 68 my units' heavy equipment platoon was ambushed. They ran out of
ammunition and were overun and none survived. The 173rd, E/17 sent a relief six hours later. Yes,
we have very high regard for the Cav! Our web-site is a very basic and simple site. I just don't
have the skill to create a site with many whistles and bells.
From Jim "Grits" Dundon on 5/21/97
"First, I would like to say WELCOME HOME. I served with the 1st Cav 69-70 15th Admin. Got your Web Address off Firebase Higgy. Your Web Page Looks Great. Your Friend and Brother, Jim." THE PRICE OF FREEDOM IS WRITTEN ON THE WALL!!!
I met Jim at the Wall on Memorial Day. Thanks, Jim, for the bear hug and
From John S. Darlington at Vietnam: 25 years of Healing on 5/23/97
"Finally got a chance to check out your website today...AWESOME! Very well put together, and the
content and graphics are perfect. Very impressive. I am currently trying to update my website and will
put up a page with links to other Vet's pages; your's will be on top. Small coincidence - I currently attend
Northeastern Univ. and spent a year in Alpha Co. of the Liberty Battalion, 1994 -1995. And a very close
friend of mine, LTC Glen Funk, USA (RET), taught Military Science at NU around 1960. Small world. Best
From Craig Willbanks at Viet Nam Vets on 5/27/97
"I was also there, 12 May 65 to 20 Dec 70, Combat Engineers. Your Home page brought a big lump
From Edward C. Reese, NCCS, USN, (Ret.) at NAVetsUSA on 6/1/97
"Visited your web pages-Great Sight! Please visit our sight, the first national NAVY veterans
organization designed on and for the World Wide Web."
From Carl J. Daniel on 6/1/97
"I really can't add to your site. I think that you said it all and I might add very, very well.
Nice home page. I'm new to the web, just signed on. Please keep up the good work. I was
in the Navy from 3/27/50 to 2/23/54, assigned to the U. S. Navy squadron VR-6."
From Gilbert J. Raynor, USN (Ret.), DV on 6/21/97
"I served at the same time and in the same war, but I was beneath the sea. But like many others,
I lost friends and loved ones. I became extremely emotional as I visited your site and proud that you have
proclaimed the truth as you have here. You stand in honor and integrity and as a patriot. I have the
privilege of having met two great Medal of Honor winners from Nam, now retired Colonel Robert Howard and Roy
Benevides. In my mind you stand among these men who believed in America and whom mankind could never
honor enough. Please accept my "HAND SALUTE" to you sir for your tremendious site. I am
proud to have men like you as a "Comrade in Arms". Gil Raynor"
From Dennis L. Eveland at Our Forgotten Heroes, POW/MIAs, KIAs on 6/22/97
"I could say a great deal of praise, but still would not cover the great work you have done in
promoting awareness to the POW/MIAs and KIAs. I am really happy to see such great work in making sure
we never forget these great heroes. I have a smaller page doing this myself. I will just tell
you one thing, and I think you'll understand how I feel from this. Thank You Brother....Dennis
From Stephen L. Worley, SMSgt.USAF (Ret.) at The Prairie Ridge Web Site on 6/23/97
"I am very impressed with your web site and salute you! You have done an excellent job in constructing a web site to let people know just exactly what it means to be a Veteran of this country. In addition, you have brought forth a reminder of a time when we were not applauded for our efforts during the Vietnam war years, but were spit upon and called every name in the book for having served our country. Having served my country for twenty-six years and in two wars, only a fellow veteran can reach out and touch another's soul with comfort in the camaraderie that exists within us. I think your web site reaches out and will touch many a veteran, and perhaps reach into the hearts of non-believers as well.
Not too long ago you visited my web site 'Prairie Ridge'. (Editorial Note: The great patriotic background
music we use comes from this site.) Since your visit, I have made some major changes and have a 'Patriotic
Poem' section. I would like to use the poem on your web site entitled 'Dark to Light'. Let me know,
From Stewart Pearson in Zambia on 6/25/97
"Hi!! I am an ex-Rhodesian troopie and not a citizen of the USA. I want to support you
because, whether right or wrong (as many will go on and on) you answered to your country's call like so many
others have done before and will continue to do so. Politicians use Mr/Ms Citizen to promote their cause,
good or bad and Mr/Ms Citizen obeys. The Bible says that we must obey our leaders. If many Vietnam
Vets did so then more honour to them. They deserve the best their country can give and I despise those
who refused to honour them. Too often Mr/Ms Citizen is used and dumped because of political expediency.
Keep up your good work - those who serve deserve to be acknowledged in every way. I lost my country,
I lost many good friends and I lost family in the Rhodesian war. I cannot even remember them on
Remembrance day but I will never forget those who, like many VietVets, served their country when called on to do
so. May God richly bless you and bring success in this endeavour."
From James "Jackson" Laux on 6/30/97
"Major Devlin, One word for your site - BULLSEYE!"
|and again on 12/31/97
"I do not think you are on target -- I know you are on target. Thanks for the service you have
performed for our nation. We would not be free if men such as yourself had not stepped forward. While
others cut and ran you stood firm. The good Lord will extend his hand in respect."
From Sherri Kerr on 7/7/97
"Although I am not a military vet, the Vietnam war greatly impacted me - when I was 17 the one that
I had planned on spending the rest of my life with went and joined the Marines, went to Vietnam, then did not
come back. It was not until last December (1996) that an incident occured that caused me to start looking
back at those years and remembering. One day I was talking to my then 13, going on 14 in Jan, daughter
and she asked me to tell her about the first man I loved and boy did that ever open the floodgates!!! As
I sat looking at her and trying to sort my thoughts out into coherent words I realized that she was the age I
was when I met him. He was a friend of my older brother (born in 1946) and I think we fell in love the
first day he came home from school with him. Since I was only 14 our relationship started out as a
"Love/hate" - I was his friend's bratty younger sister that would never leave them alone!!! It
was just true love!!! As the years went by and our love grew, it was the typical small town type of thing
- our parents were happy, we were happy and then it all went to hell - he came over one night and told me he had
signed up and was leaving for boot camp the next day!!! For days he had been trying to figure out how to
tell me - well to make a long story short, he went and I tried to forget him. As the years have rolled
along I never seemed to be able to find a man that I was truely happy with - went through two marriages and am
single now. Was not until I faced my own "demons" that I realize the reason was because I was
trying to find HIM again and that will never be! Now I can get on with my life realizing why I have never
been happy and perhaps now that I have faced things I can be!!! It does take that to have closure!!
Thank you for your home page!!!"
From Tom Striegler on 7/15/97
"Hi Odie, Just found your web page and wanted to congratulate you on a great job. I, too, served
as a Field Artillery Officer in Vietnam. I graduated from Texas A&M in January 1966, and was commissioned
a 2nd Lt. in Field Artillery. After FAOBC at Ft. Sill and Airborne School, I reported to A Battery, 2nd
Battalion, 4th Field Artillery (105mm), 9th Infantry Division at Ft. Riley, Kansas. The 9th had recently been
re-activated and was training for deployment to Vietnam. We departed the U.S. on January 9, 1967. I
initially served as Forward Observer, but soon was reassigned as XO of B Battery where I spent the next 7 months.
In September 1967, I was reassigned from the 2nd of the 4th to the 7th of the 8th (8"/175mm), first
as FDO of B Battery, then XO of C Battery. I returned home in January 1968, just missing Tet and spent 18
months as an instructor at the Artillery School at Ft. Sill. After a short tour in Korea, I left the
Army to return to my civilian career with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, where I'm currently Chief of Law
Enforcement. I plan on retiring early next year and hope to have time then to put my own home page up.
Somehow, I doubt that it will even come close to yours. I'm really impressed. Good luck
and congratulations on a great home page.
From Bill Spatz on 7/19/97
"Very well said bro! Couldn't have said it better myself. Gonna print this page for my
ladie's kids. They need to understand. The lack of any respectable coverage in the history books
is pure criminal. Welcome home brother! Bill, USS Coral Sea, '72-'73"
From Donald Frontel on 7/19/97
"The graphics on your site are outstanding. Your whole message is RIGHT ON!
From Jack Paar at 19th Combat Engineer Battalion on 7/19/97
From Peggy Deans at The Anzac's of Vietnam on 7/20/97
"Thank you for allowing a friend of Veterans the honour of being able to come and view this magnificient
site. Please visit our homepage as well as this is a new endeavour. The inspiration which you give
others to open up and be able to accept the wrongs of the past cannot be commended highly enough.
From John Hack on 7/20/97
"I was referred to your site by Mr. Gene Kuentzler, whom I served with in the 19th Engineer Bn. near
Bong Son, Viet Nam. My tour was from 12/66 to 12/67 and I too, was a "closet soldierquot; for some 30
years. Our unit had it's reunion last month in Indianapolis, Indiana. I happened to find the reunion
notice on one of the military sites just by chance. For thirty years, I had not conversed with any one about
my experiences, much less see anyone from my unit. It was a rebirth for me. I share your feelings about
our return home, the lack of recognition even from my father, has hurt for many years. I was sent to Chicago
for the 1968 Convention riots where we were abused beyond imagination, by those for which we had served in Viet Nam
to protect their rights only a few months before. Your site is a real work of art and obviously comes from
the heart...keep up the good work. Only those who have served their country, can understand the ties shared
by all Soldiers. Welcome Home from a Brother Veteran. John Hack - US 54804411"
From Don Fenno at 19th Combat Engineers on 7/22/97
"Pretty good site, Odie. I was younger than you and managed to forget most of it right after
discharge by getting thoroughly sucked into school for 6 years. Married a good woman also. And work,
work, work has helped. I will mention to the caretaker of our 19th Engineers website that I appreciated
his recommendation. Thanks. Don Fenno"
From Thomas E. West on 7/22/97
"We all in some way or another hid from the war. I did and in away I still am. Still hard
to tell your Kids with out sounding like a nut. I was with the 19th Engr, Bn. I was in the same AO
as you. Also Gunned an M109."
From Barry L. Winters on 7/23/97
"You have articulated the "survivors guilt" that I feel as well as my concerns for the welfare
and future of our country and people. Excuse the cliche but you are right on. . .fire for effect! Thanks
& God bless."
From Tina Thomas at Firebase Freedom on 7/24/97
"You have a wonderful page. I am married to a Vietnam Veteran (USMC in country 66-68) and am
active in veterans issues, especially POW/MIA issues. Please let me say "Welcome Home" from one
who wasn't protesting or putting you guys down when you came home....God bless you."
From Lynn Duvall on 7/28/97
"This is a "letter" I wrote about a week ago to a young man I loved (still love) when I was
in high school, my best friend's older brother, KIA December 16, 1968. I've been writing a story about him
& writing him "letters" helps me deal with the pain. 'Dear Jimmy -- I woke up crying at 3:30
this morning because I couldn't find your story. I wanted to write something down before I forgot it: "The
least we owe them is our grief," something Bill Moyers said about Kurdish refugees that's exactly the way I
feel about the young men and women who went to Vietnam, especially the ones -- like you -- who never came back.
At least I thought that's why I was crying. But when I found the manuscript and wrote down the quote,
I started crying even harder, because it wasn't your story I wanted. It was you, and your story is all of
you I have. Sometimes I think if I could just feel your arms around me one more time, hear you call me your
diamond girl one more time, maybe I wouldn't still feel your absence like a stabbing pain in a phantom limb --
or a phantom heart. Can your heart go on breaking over and over until there's nothing left? And, even
though your heart is gone, will you still feel pain like someone whose leg has been amputated? I think that
must be what's happening to me. I talk to your picture once in a while. Sometimes I promise that I'll
never forget you or what happened in Vietnam. Sometimes I ask you questions, like the one about hearts.
But you're not talking; you're busy being dead. Not long ago, I told you that I just can't find a place
to put this love away. People think love always fades. But when it's been inside you for 30 years, it
becomes as much a part of you as your breath, your blood, your bone marrow. But, I'm alright. Really.
It's just that sometimes I wake up crying in the middle of the night. But that won't go on forever.
Will it? If I could feel your arms around me and hear your voice ... it wouldn't be enough. Nothing
will ever be enough. The Baha'i's believe the dead can pray for the living. I know that -- like me --
you worshipped at the Church of No Preference. But just in case the Baha'i's are right, maybe it wouldn't hurt
if you said a few words for me now and then. Something simple, maybe a prayer for piece of mind and some balm
for the empty, aching place where my heart used to be. -- Love, Lynn'."
From Jammie L. Lamb, USAF (Ret.) at Lamb's Meadow on 7/30/97
"This page is outstanding in every way. Told like it was and is. I am a Vet of the war
fought to a draw in Korea, thanks to civilian involvement, and another one we lost, thanks again to civilian
involvement. At least we won the Cold War, but that was after I retired. The first one we were
welcomed home with a kiss, the next one with spit. We didn't ask to go. Our country called, we went
without asking why. Lauding the Viet Vet now is too little, too late, however, if my country called again,
I would go as before. I'm new on the net but if I had an award to give, your page would be the first. Thanks for the memories and knowing we are not alone. Jim Lamb"
From Steve Woodside on 8/1/97
"You are right on target and I also think this country needs to not just honor the Americans who fought
and died for our freedom but we must stop spending the money on our criminals and start taking more action towards
helping all Veterans instead of ignoring them. The POW/MIA issue is another travesty all its own and no matter
how much needs to be done to rectify this, no one will ever get enough government officials to help us. What
can we do to get people to band together and bring and end to the injustices that have been reaped on the United
States Veterans? Let me know what you think. I do support groups such as Rolling Thunder, but even that
is not enough to sway anyone in Washington."
From Ron Durling ex-FTG2(SS) USS Gudgeon SS-567 on 8/2/97
"I spent over an hour on your site today and I must confess, it brought a few tears to my old eyes. I
was discharged just as Vietnam was warming up, but I keep a special place in my heart for Vietnam Vets. I'm not
much of a writer, so I offer the following as a tribute to my comrades and especially to Jim Phillippi, a former
shipmate who went down on the USS Thresher in April, 1963."
|A Cold War Fought Deep - U.S. and Soviet Submarines in Deadly Contests
Thank you, Ron! This article is one of the most compelling I have read in
a long time. I was spellbound by the "near misses" and horrified by the senseless tragedies of
Cold War "games of chicken". It is truly a sad day when senior officials "play games"
with American lives!
From Kevin M. Cordray on 8/3/97
"Great site! Can you tell me why I, well up inside, get gooseflesh outside and give
thanks to those, whom I don't know, who served for my freedoms? Thank you and my respects to you
and your team."
From Frank J. Maher on 8/3/97
"Welcome Home Brother!!!! As a former member of A 2/7 and B 1/9 (Scouts) your page brought a few
tears to my eyes. I know well how you feel! GarryOwen Sir!!! Frank"
From Rick Parks on 8/3/97
"It's apparent you can finally talk the talk years after walking the walk. You are on target,
but our nation, so long the result of a 'me first' mentality will never be awakened to the dangers that lie
barely submerged beneath the facade of everyday life. A nation of people too well protected for too long
by too few results in a nation of sheep; each going their own peaceful way, cropping the grass desiring only to
remain undisturbed. As many know, it only takes one a Judas Goat to lead the flock of sheep to slaughter.
Our nation, especially since 1975, has become the flock of peacefully grazing sheep. The occupants
of power within the beltway took the same oath with respect to protecting and defending the constitution against
all enemies, foreign and domestic. Unfortunately, those occupying the offices have been able to lie to and
deceive the american public for so long, they now feel they owe us nothing except whatever shallow promises they
have to make in order to sucker the unknowing and uncaring to vote for them."
From Dale DeBord at Dale and Mary's Dedication to the American Veteran on 8/4/97
"I think a visit to our Website expresses my thoughts and emotions better than any words I can put here. I will say at this time, Odie, that you are certainly not alone. Know that I am proud to have served our country in one of its greatest periods of need. Know that it took decades for me to cope with my survivor guilt, my country's rejections, and all the other "normal" difficulties of dealing with war. However, as my dear friend Gunny Beau Jackson has said to me many times, "Adapt, Improvise, Overcome..." and, that is what I've done. I hope that is what you are doing as well, Odie.
I tell you these things, Odie, because it was with unquestioned pride that I served my country "In the worst of times and in the best of times". That pride was taught and learned from my Uncle Norman, my father Jesse DeBord (also a WWII Veteran of the Navy and the Pacific campaign), and my Uncle Virgle (a fellow Marine and Korean Veteran). They never questioned their duty to their country. They understand that freedom, wherever it is fought for, has a price, but with that price comes peace.
I served my country in Vietnam because I believe in our country's international role as a protector of the oppressed and a guardian of those freedoms we all cherish here at home. If we are not willing to protect our brothers and sisters across the globe from the oppression they would fall to without our help, we will have no reason to be surprised when we ourselves fall to the enemy invading our shores. "The Great Experiment" will have died due to indifference.
I served without question as did you, Odie. I did so proudly. I've dealt with my demons, but I suspect I nor you shall ever have the kind of "closure" Mike Austin writes of in his work, CLOSURE: A VIETNAM STORY. As I read "Closure", I revisited many familiar places where as a CH-46D Crew Member and Gunner for the Marine Corps' "Flying Tigers" of HMM-262, 1st MAW, FMFPac, I flew medevac and emergency extractions of downed air crews, ambushed grunts, and often, luckless civilian victims of the horrors of war. These places with names like Quang Tri, Phu Bai, Hue, Marble Mountain, China Beach, An Hoa, Dong Ha, the Que Son mountains, the Ho Chi Minh Trail, and too many others to recall, are each part of a common thread of experience that all Vietnam Veterans have a special understanding about.
When we think about these places, we think of our friends who were maimed, or were killed, or left behind and unaccounted for... and the survival guilt comes back as strongly as if it were yesterday. I'm very happy for Mike Austin. He has finally had his Vietnam closure. I don't know if I'll ever enjoy that experience if I live to be a 100.
I apologize for my long-windedness... and I pray that I'm wrong, Odie, and that you have found your own private peace regarding our common experiences in and because of Vietnam.
You are invited to visit Dale and Mary's
Very Personal Home Page and Dedication to the American Veteran. It would be great to hear from you!
Dale DeBord Semper Fi"
From Mark Githens on 8/8/97
"Only just a beginning, my friend. We both know the amount of effort that was required for you to set this thing up, the amount of your own pain that is being poured into it, and the amount of work that we all still need to do to make sure that this kind of site is no longer needed, never needed again. The more we are able to use the power of the internet to connect ourselves in just causes, the more that we can use this medium to unite.
Imagine the millions of internet users all agreeing that justice is required for those
Americans missing from some of the last wars, and that none of us will tolerate this kind of treatment of Americans
again. Not that there won't be other wars, not that brave people won't be called on to die for their country,
but that there will never again be any tolerence for allowing soldiers to go unaccounted for or unsupported due to
a government that would rather 'get it over with' than support the lives of the people that the government depends
on to maintain security."
From Roger Young at Northwest Veterans Newsletter on 8/10/97
"Odie: I stopped by your web site and you are doing an excellent job!"
From Chuck Neumann at Neumann's World on 8/12/97
"U.S. Army 68-71 You had to be in the service at the time to understand. It's nothing you can study
now and know. This man was my brother in uniform. I will stand by him. This man knows what I am
talking about. Most of you others do not. I have been spit on; told I am evil; had people try to talk me
out of the service. I was RA. I am proud of that fact. My father was a Colonel, with almost 30 years
in the Army. He did 3 tours in Viet Nam (Infantry Aviation). God bless all of you in service and all of
you that made it out. I, for one, am proud of each and every one of you. Thank you from the bottom of
From Ron Guilford at Firebase Falcon on 8/12/97
"Odie: WELCOME HOME - BROTHER. I too am a Nam vet (66-67) B Co, 720th MP Bn, Long Binh.
Operations Cedar Falls and Junction City. Attached duty with 1st Inf Div; 25th Inf Div; 173d Abn
Bde. We were there in the same time frame brother. About your homepage..... I'm blown away!!!
Fantastic job. I've gotta have some time to think of the appropriate word's, so for now, just believe
that your's is the best site I've visited yet, and I've looked at a lot of 'em. And, I only look at veterans
pages, patriotic pages, etc. Yours is top drawer my friend. Be assured, I shall return to have a more
in-depth look. All I had time to look at tonight was your opening page. There's still lot's more to look
at and I'm certain it's all going to be first class. You've given me inspiration to work even harder on my own
pages. Thank's for that brother. Gotta go for now. Check ya later. ~ Ron ~"
From Lawrence A. Derouin HM3 (FMF/SS) USN (73-77) on 8/14/97
"Great site......LONG TIME OVERDUE. I was a Hospital Corpsman (USN) in the early 70's....served
with Fleet Marine Forces and Submarine Force. I served my country for 4 years (am 5th generation USN/USMC)
and was extremely proud to do so. I'd do it again in a heartbeat. Haven't seen too many VIETNAM VET
SITES (yet) BUT I will say that this one is the best I have seen. Welcome home Colonel. Semper
From Robin Kirkpatrick atDaisey's Tribute on 8/17/97
"I was a very young child during the Vietnam War and did not understand most of what was going on.
There are two things I can clearly remember; one being how lucky I felt that my dad came home from the
office every night while my friends wondered where their daddy's were. (My father was in the US Navy and
taught guided missle school during that time.) The other thing I can remember is attending my first funeral.
I can't recall his name or even his branch of service. What haunts me is what I can recall about that
memorial service. The protesters! Oh how I can recall their presence and how they created such a disturbance.
That day would forever change my life, for at the age of 5, I could clearly see that what they were doing was
not only disrespectful to the family of the deceased veteran but to our country and all of our service men and women.
I spend a lot of my spare time searching the web for Veterans pages. I often visit Gunny Fallon's site, it is a place of inspiration for me. Until finding your page, Gunny's has been the only one that required a box of tissue. I am so very touched by all that I have read on your page, even composing this e-mail I am fighting back the tears. My tears are caused from the reality of knowing that you never received the welcome home you deserved and the reality of knowing there are many who have yet to come home.
So to you I say THANK YOU and WELCOME HOME! Today I
reafirm the vow I made to myself as that 5 year old little girl; I will do my very best to see that the American
people never forget the sacrifices made by our service men and women! Although my site is still under
construction, I would be honored if you would allow me to add a link to your site on my page. My respect,
admiration and appreciation, Robin Kirkpatrick"
From John Bernard on 8/17/97
"In 1957 I was commissioned a second lieutenant through the ROTC program. Fortunately for me it was during peace time. Through the years I often have wondered how I would have reacted if I had had to serve in the front lines during a conflict. I have reconciled myself to the fact that I would have gladly served during WWII, but would have dreaded serving in the Vietnam War. Why is that? For the reasons stated so eloquently in your message. During WWII the country and, I believe, the government stood strongly behind our veterans. The Vietnam servicemen had no such support. When they came home from the conflict to which they had been ordered to go they were spit upon by a few, and shunned by the many.
They were the lucky ones. Many came
home in body bags,but at least their families could grieve and bury their loved ones. The ones most unfortunate
are those who are MIA and POW. Hopefully causes such as yours will cause some action to be taken. Serving
in the military is not a one-way street. The government and people owe and should be required to provide all
the support necessary to bring to a closure a veteran's service. What is being done for the MIA/POW? Sorry
for rambling, but that is how I feel. God be with your cause!"
From James S. Siler at Virtual Magic 3D Images on 8/19/97
"Just reviewed and bookmarked your site. Will link to it from my site on the next revision.
From W.K. "Bill" Pop Scott on 8/20/97
"I was with the Last Patrol walk from Melbourne to Washington. I just found your site, and it
From Christopher S. Rich at Dads Page on 8/21/97
"I just wanted to say Thank You from the Bottom of my Heart. My Father has been MIA for the past
30 years and I am very active in the MIA/POW Issue. But your page just made me even more dedicated. Thank
From Michael N Grimm ET1(SS) on 8/28/97
"I served on submarines from 1964 to 1976, so never actually made it to VietNam. However, I do
remember coming back from a 3 month patrol, flying into Rhode Island and being bussed to New London sub base.
When we arrived at the gate, the "Baby Killer" protesters had it blocked. Our families
were on base and we couldn't get in to see them. I think it's a disgrace the way veterans were treated
then but even more so now the way the Government is treating Vets today."
From Gary H. Cunha atFayetteville Vet Center on 8/28/97
"Odie, you are a true warrior and patriot. GOD BLESS YOU!"
From CWO2 Brown on 8/28/97
"Clear your heart, clear the air and stand up proud. I entered service in '77. I missed
the war, but remember my mom's concern that her husband, and now her son would be caught
From TMC(SS) A.I. Suman USN/USNR (Ret.) on 8/29/97
"Even though I was on a submarine in the North Atlantic during most of Vietnam, I too was spit at and
called such names as "Baby Killer" and "Navy Bastard". This was my reward for spending
3 years of my life at 3 knots and 300 feet. You have a great page! Thanks!"
From Stanley J. Bice, CWO4, USN at Stan's Home Page on 8/30/97
"Cannot agree with you more about how the Vietnam Vets have been treated. And you're right, it's
not much different for Desert Storm/Desert Shield Vets either. I joined the Navy in October '74 and am still
on active duty, except the past few years have really made me think things over. I still believe in God and
my country, but the people in charge have really lost their grip on reality. Once again, OUTSTANDING JOB, and
God bless. Stan"
|and again on 1/10/98
"I can never go to your page and not feel a wide range of emotions, from anger to sorrow. The
MIA/POW issue is one that I just can't get out of my mind. "There go I but for the grace of God"
are words that ring true. I added a link from my page to yours and wish you the best of everything. I
also tell everyone to visit your page. I think it's great! Stan"
From Michael J. Kirby on 9/1/97
"This is the greatest country in the world, and when called to serve I too responded, because I was
raised to love my country and everything she stands for. I served with Alpha Company, 6th Battalion, 31st
Regiment (Pro Patria) of the 9th Infantry Division's (Old Reliable) 3rd Brigade (Go Devils). I have three
great kids that are proud of their country. They need to see that there are others out there that do also.
I also put my medals, awards, etc., away and went into the closet. It wasn't until this last birthday
that I realized that my children were proud of their father. They gave me a beautiful plaque with them
mounted. I was touched deeply. I thank God everyday for men like you that haven't forgotten and know
how to share the experience of being a patriot."
From Richard A. Rainey on 9/3/97
"I've seen what you are talking about. I was close to the same. I was SOG and had
contact with more arms length. It was all there just made the decision not to get too
involved, at least less than you did. I had my rewards at home just xx number of days/months away,
so short I couldn't get on a shoe lace. I waited only to be turned down twenty years later as a crazed
vet. I have lived through that and I am still looking for some sort of sitution, etc. Well, best
leave it at that. I will be free in two or three more years and then I might say more."
From Barbara Fitzgerald-Malone at He Is Remembered on 9/11/97
"I hope it's okay that I say more than just why I think you are right on target. And I hope it's okay that I'm not a veteran. I was so moved by the comments on your website. Although I was too young and too stupid at that time, I wish I had been there to greet you at the airport.
I SHOULD have been there.
We all should have. I recently became a member of Operation Just Cause and adopting an MIA has been
the most rewarding and worthwhile thing that I feel I have ever done. Too little, too late, but I hope to
try and help make up for the wrong that has been done to our Vietnam Veterans, most especially to those still missing
or imprisoned. Thank you for sharing your thoughts."
From Gerald Uffelman at USS Queenfish SS393 - SSN651 Website on 9/11/97
"I am a Vietnam Era Vet. Need I say more?"
From Dene Rogers on 9/17/97
"I am a retired submarine sailor and did not serve in country, but I have two brothers that did. I
enjoyed your site, well thought out and presented. It must have created some per- sonal emotions. I
believe you have expressed the thoughts of many veterans. I too am an American and appreciate your effort.
From Bob Johnson on 9/26/97
"There are a few well done military sites on the web and I have noticed that most of those have honored you
with their awards. I think its great that that they are giving their time and talents to honor veterans and point
out some of the less than honorable treatment that these warriors receive. No one has done a better job of
telling it like it is than you have. I only hope that it brings understanding to a few more that"love
of country" is not a fad but a way of life. Perhaps you might ask the question "If you won't fight
for your freedom, your country or your home, what would you fight for?" During my 22 years of military
service I spent at least half of my time outside the borders of this great land. Maybe that is why I can
appreciate what we have and and how easily we could loose it. Life is precious but only if it is sustained
by freedom. Thank you for a job well done."
From Kimberly Jozwiak on 10/30/97
"I would like to thank you now. I realize that it thirty years late but I am only 29. I was
recently given the task of choosing an individual, group or organization that has not received the recognition and
appreciation they deserve and present a speech. I believe Vietnam War veterans definitely fit that bill.
While gathering data and information for this speech, I realized the pain and hurt our young men must have
felt and are still feeling. I can never understand, but I can thank you. I have recently ordered a
POW/MIA bracelet like my mother used to wear for myself. I hope it will incite people to ask me about its
significance. If you have something you would like relayed to the student body of the college where I am
speaking I would be more than happy and honored to be able to quote you. I only wish you could be there for
an introduction and a show of gratitude from all of us. Again thank you for risking your life and I am sorry
for your losses. I have made a point of sharing your website with my 11 year old son and explained its
importance. He has so many questions that I don't have answers for, but I'm trying. Sincerely,
From Denis Plumly on 10/31/97
"Sir: My name is Denis W. Plumly Jr, and after viewing your site I just want to thank you sincerely for your service to your country and WELCOME HOME!! Since I wasn't born until 1970, I have no personal memories of the war or the times. However, the Vietnam war did claim the life of a relative. He was in the Navy, and died on a patrol boat. I'll never know who he was, but when my family visited the wall in D.C. the year it was opened I made sure we found his name. This nation definitely owes you and all veterans a huge debt of gratitude.
I only recently became aware of what happened through study for my degree in history,
which of course still leaves me lacking in experience. Although it's only me, I'm extremely thankful for all
of you and your efforts. Maybe this nation needs a lesson in history: We can only move forward through
learning from the past. Sincerely, Denis"
From George M. Jones (LT, CHC, USNR - '81-'88) on 11/2/97
"Great site; great message.
From Jerry Abrahamsen, SHC,USN (Ret.) at Jerry Abrahamsen's Home Page on 11/7/97
"Got to tell ya that your Home Page is "OUTSTANDING". I'm not much for words at
From Randy Van Horn on 11/25/97
"You did what you thought was right, then and now. Never forget that."
From Michael "Mooch" Muccino on 12/4/97
"We served our country during a time when the world was in turmoil. Some were drafted others
volunteered. We did it to provide and maintain freedom for our country, so the draft dodgers could
return to enjoy the freedoms we fought for. What other country on this earth has that type of freedom? The
answer is none! You have an excellent site. Never be ashamed of what you have accomplished. Always
be proud of what you have done for your country. No man can take that from you. God Bless You and Thank
You for this site. You are the courage that makes this country so great."
From W. David Hyte on 12/5/97
"Wow! Quite a site! As a Vietnam Era vet (71-80), I was at one time afraid to tell folks that
were just meeting me that I'd been in the service. Now, I'm thankful for the years I spent in the Navy on subs
helping to defend this lifestyle I enjoy so much today. There are so many people out here that don't have a
clue; have no idea what it's like outside our borders. The lemmings see TV and think that's how the world
really is. Many of us know how precarious our existence really is and how we have to defend it. I sure
wish American would wake up and stop taking the TV and politicians at face value. Whatever happened to good
ol' common sense reasoning? Ah well, great site. Best Regards, Dave"
From Robyn Callo at Callo, Ltd. Military Surplus Online on 12/16/97
"What a beautiful site. I was quite moved, especially by the poem and the photo of
"The Wall". I'm 50 years old so the memories of VietNam are vivid. My husband
is a VietNam Vet. Keep up the good work you're doing here. We need to honor those who
From Court Horncastle on 12/27/97
"I was the Scout Platoon Leader for a tank battalion in the 1CD during Desert Storm. Your site is
great. Thanks for taking the time to construct it. First Team!"
From Glen Roy Harris on 12/27/97
"I am a 2 tour 'nam vet. I saw my buddies die. I was there when we were spat upon and I know there are still Americans in Vietnam. We promised we would all come home together. Our government broke that promise, not us.
Here's a poem I wrote in 1993:"
Thank you, Glen, for sharing your poem with us! Your verses say it all in a very
eloquent and informative way! Hopefully it will reach enough people to make a difference and help bring about
full accountability for our POW-MIA. Now if we could only get our elected representatives on Capitol Hill to
READ it and UNDERSTAND the message . . .
From Doni Hardy at Family Net on 12/30/97
"Just found your website and really think it is great! So great in fact that I borrowed some
graphics to add to a new page I was constructing. I did give you credit and added a link to your web page.
Hope you come and visit. Thanks, Doni"
From Rodney W. Brown on 1/2/98
"I served in Vietnam from 1970 to 1971 as an Aircraft Electrician for the USAF. I really appreciate
this page and the links it provides. I experienced some of the confusion and dislike of the Vietnam war before
enlisting and volunteering to go to Vietnam, but nothing like it was after I returned home as a Veteran. I
have always had and still have a clear understanding of what serving my country means whenever it calls. I
think this page clearly states that message with honor. Thanks and God Bless."
You can check the links Rodney mentions at Veteran &
From William F. "Smitty" Smith on 1/14/98
"I served in the US Army for 8 years. My first tour in Vietnam was 11-66 to 10-67. I was with
the 35th Combat Engr Bn - Attached to A 1/8th Cav. July 2, 1967. We got our butts kicked real bad in the Bong
Son Plains. I received a Bronze star w/"V", and Air Medal. My second tour was 11-69 to 10-70.
I was an E-6 assigned to Division Headquarters. I lost a lot of close friends in 66 & 67. I
am proud to have served in Vietnam. I believed in what we were doing then and if called to serve my country
again, I would do it in a heart beat. Looking through your web page and seeing my flag and my 1st Cav Patches,
I felt proud to be able to say that I was there. There were tears in reading your comments. Thanks for
From Clifford K. Fuhrmeister on 1/14/98
"As a former US Army MP (ets 7/73), I think you are 100% on track and deserve a pat on the back for
telling it as it is. I did not see action in Viet Nam but feel nothing but highest respect for those who
did, and those who gave the highest price for my freedom. My heart- felt thanks to all veterans and to the
families of the military people who are no longer with us. God Bless America!"
From Carl Huber on 1/24/98
"Where else can a seventeen year old get choked-up and misty-eyed reading a web page but in the great
country of the United States? God bless America, and God bless you."
From Joe Semancheck on 1/30/98
"I had and have the same feelings as you. Warm regards, Joe."
From David Jack on 2/3/98
"I would like to thank you for such a wonderful location on the web. I found so much information
I may be in information overload for the next month!"
From Roger A. McGill at 3rd Squadron 4th Cavalry - 25th Inf Div Web site on 2/4/98
"Hi. First of all "WELCOME HOME". This is a great Web site, and you have stated
many ideas that a lot of us Vietnam Veterans have felt and feel. God Bless the USA. A shame it took so
long for us to come home. I went to the "WALL" by myself in 1985, and it was the best thing I ever
did. In 1986 five Vietnam Veterans here in Chicago put on a "WELCOME HOME PARADE".
We were expecting 25,000 Vietnam Veterans to attend. Well we had 175,000 Vietnam Veterans march in
the parade and there were 500,000 American's on the sidelines cheering for us. It was awesome and brought
many of our Brothers Home. Keep up your good work, and let's make sure that no one ever forgets the sacrifices
our Brothers & Sisters have made. I served with the 3/4 Cav, 25th Inf Div. '65 - '66 Cu Chi, RVN.
Again, WELCOME HOME! Roger"
From Gary Gene Wright, Jr. on 2/9/98
"I think your site is one of the best I have ever seen. I am curious about the notation about the "Remember" picture having a caption like the one you state on the site. Said picture is of myself, holding my son Gary G. Wright III so that he may kiss the name of his grandfather, Col. Gary G. Wright, USAF, MIA 1-17-67 NVN case #0570. I just don't remember it ever having the other caption. As you have explanations as to some of the other pictures also, I would appreciate it if you would acknowledge my father along with that picture. Thanks, Gary Wright"
Excerpts from my response (FYI): "Dear Gary: Thanks for the kudos.
Messages like yours make my effort worthwhile, particularly when they personally relate as your does. It
is rare that I have an opportunity to talk with someone who is so closely related to information on my site. I
would be honored to acknowledge your father along with that picture! Also, with your permission, I would like
to recognize the three generations in the picture, and provide a link to your e-mail address. Thanks again,
Well.... Gary agreed by return e-mail and the caption on the picture now appropriately recognizes three generations
involved in an act of remembrance and honor to a loved one.
Well.... Gary agreed by return e-mail and the caption on the picture now appropriately recognizes three generations involved in an act of remembrance and honor to a loved one.
From Jeri Rice on 2/10/98
"I took a ride on the Military Train and stopped by you page for a visit. I totally agree that the
"Welcome Home" was long over due and I think you've done a terrific job on your page! Your son's support
brought tears to my eyes! Thank you for your service to our country and for my freedom!"
From Eric L. Newton - 11th Cavalry 68-69
"I feel the same as you but I am mad enough to do something about it. Incarcerated criminals
are treated better than we veterans and it is time to rally together and do something about it.
From Jay Leone on 3/2/98
"I know where you are coming from. The first time coming home in 1964 there were banners hanging
from the Golden Gate bridge saying "OUR HERO'S WELCOME HOME", the second time in 1966 l got spit on
walking down Market Street because I had a little yellow and green ribbon on my uniform. It's pretty hard to find any body in politics to admit they did any spitting.
From Manuel P. Villalobos, Jr. on 3/4/98
"I served two tours in Nam, 67-68 & 71. I turned 50 last December 7, and I am getting 10%
disability from the VA for PTSD. When my son was a
baby I always thought to myself I would rather go back to Nam rather then have him go through the same hell we
did. I am proud of my service, I answered when my country called. Now, when many of my brothers need
our country to help, they can only deny it's their fault for the problems we have developed. I may sound
somewhat bitter, it's only recently I developed this attitude for the government.
The Nam Veterans have always been treated wrong. In the recent events with
Sadam in Iraq, seeing the protesters reminded me of what we went through, especially coming
home. I came through Travis AFB also and had to deal with the protesters calling us names and treating
us like we were the bad guys. At any rate, I can relate to plenty of the feelings you are writing about.
From Steven D. Budnick on 3/9/98
"I too served with the Cav in Vietnam, B-1-8 (68-69). I served a second tour with the 101st Airborne Division (69-70); MOS 11B4P. I have often felt that non-vets looked at me as a little weird for olunteering for a second tour. At the time I was young and had a bad attitude towards life. My daughter was born while I was in the service and was almost two years old when I saw her. She did not know who I was when I finally returned. Her mother and I were divorced during this time. I have since been able to bury my personal demons, and have been successful with my life. I went to school on the GI Bill while working full time to pay child support.
I consider myself to be an average American
citizen, but still feel "robbed" of my just due and recognition by the American public for answering
the call when my country needed it. I remember I was jealous of the Desert Storm vets when they returned
home to parades and a hero's welcome. I have accepted this fact, but american's who protested
during my time can still kiss my butt. I am still bitter about this. I cannot accept
Clinton as our nation's leader, I voted for Bush.
Anyway, enough of my ramblings. I just pray that my son will never
have to enter combat and that our nation will be able to live a peaceful existence FOREVER. Airborne, All the
From Dennis B. (Butch) Edwards at Butch's Wild Country on 3/13/98
"Hi there. Just wanted to let you know I felt and still feel the same as you and like you I've
not forgotten either. I served in Vietnam 68 thru 69 a pure living hell and the longest year of my life.
Keep up the good work! With help from my wife I too developed a home page
devoted to the American Vietnam Vet. Its been 30 years and I'm just now opening up and getting out of the
closet myself. Still don't have the answers, don't know if I even want them. Like
you right or wrong I'd do it all over again if duty called me back. I think that's something most
people don't understand about Americanism. It's so simple and can't be taught; it has to be in
your heart. Well thanks again and never let the POW-MIA issue die for my comrades are there waiting for us.
God bless you my friend and may our children keep us alive."
From Randall P. Lemmons at The Lemmon Tree on 3/14/98
"Your site sent goose bumps up my spine. I am a Disablied American Veteran that served doing the
From Dee Snyder on 3/19/98
"I've been trying for years to get my husband, also a Vietnam vet, to try to make contact with other vets,
maybe even try to locate some of those he served with. Although he never hid the fact that he was a vet, he
would never discuss it with anyone We were married just after he returned home, and I was there with him during
the bad dreams, employers turning him away, etc. Anyhow, thanks to web sites like this one, he has allowed me
to list him on some buddy searches. Thanks, Dee"
From Donald P. Searles at Don's Vet Site on 3/22/98
"You must have left 'Nam just before I got there. I joined the 8th Engr Bn, 1st Cav on Jan 7, 1968,
in time for Tet. I'm glad that I'm finding sites like this on the net."
From Al Owens on 3/24/98
"Odie, I am a veteran of the VIETNAM WAR. I served as a door gunner with the 52nd Avn Co in
Danang. I was there during the period of Oct 63 - Nov 64. I never talk to my friends about my time
there, it was something that is hard for me to talk about. I have spent the last three hours on your Web
Page. It had been a long, long time since I cried, not since my mother passed away more than twenty years
ago. I cannot say that now. I have never read a more direct, truthful and to the point bio. Thank
you so much for this web page. I will be back here often."
From Charles J Schubbe on 4/6/98
"Although I am not a Vietnam Vet, I am a Korean Vet and I agree with you all the way. I cannot
understand for the life of me why our Country has never payed the respect to all Veterans of all wars who so
dilligently either gave their lives or served what time they did to make this Great Nation of ours what it is
today in spite of all its pitfalls. I commend you for
the courage it must have taken to write the best testimonial I have ever seen."
From Dina (Kuschel) Smith on 4/12/98
"I just wanted to email you and compliment your website (: Let your son know that he's not the only son out there who loves his Vietnam Vet Dad! There are currently 18 of us in a webring for Children of Vietnam Vets. If he has a webpage (he probably does) he can join. My Dad was in the 1st Cav too! (in 1965) Your site was eye-candy for me (: Dina"
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