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Redlands High School Class of 1965 - Message Board

Message Board | Post Reply Page: 1

Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Julie Kalman Fuller
11-04-2010 10:30am
I was talking with Gregory Gomez after the 45th Reunion and he suggested we do a page for classmates who served in the military to add comments.  Since this site doesn't allow us to add pages, it seemed like a good place to start was on this Message Board where we could create a thread for people to add comments, much as the one Nick Souleles began a few years back where there are now over 35 replies.

So...Here we go.  Greg just forwarded a touching piece on the Marines that I add here:

http://00f2630.netsolhost.com/farewellmarine.html

I remember how excited Barry and I were to see him at our 20th since we had heard Greg was lost in Viet Nam.  Imagine our joy when he showed up in person - in full Native  American regalia!!  Thanks for all you've done and continue to do, Brother... and to all our other classmates, sons and daughters who have served our precious country.



Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Peggy Beauregard
11-05-2010 06:21pm
I remember Terry Lane and I and a few others at Valley college talking for hoursabout Viet Nam. Terry over a shorter than I would have liked time frame decided to join up. It seems he was going to fly helicopters which was so dangerous. It was great to see Terry at this reunion. We were talking about how we became friends and it was at Valley.


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
john torres
11-06-2010 01:37am
It's amazing to learn about all the guys who served in the Armed Forces after graduating in '65. Guys like Joe Frink, Bobby Belllue, Tim Doss, Marty Ramirez, Robert Chavez, Jim Eastwood, myself and others spent a year in Viet Nam. Some of us actually ran into each other in some village or base camp during that time. It was strange to know that just a short time before our dalily routines merely involved getting through our classes at RHS. We are just a few of the many guys who answered the call. On November 11 we will honor all of those who served and remember those who never made it back.


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Ron MacPherson
12-02-2010 12:24pm
Most enjoyable memory of my time in service was when I finally managed to get R&R to Sydney, Australia.

The last night there(had five wonderful days in the Kings Cross area) sitting at  a bar by myself, getting quietly stinkoed, so I would be able to climb back aboard the plane headed back to Da Nang in the morning.. My attention kept wandering to a guy sitting on the other side of the bar(circular style bar) who sure looked familiar.  

Turned out it was Basil Lobaugh...... He was in the Army on his first night in town, I was in the Corps on my last night in town... We were not good buds in high school, shared a mutual friend, Ronnie Garcia.. It was interesting to me to run into a class mate from high school on the other side of the world...


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Linda (Ruff)
02-02-2011 05:00pm
Hi all.  I am very proud of all our veterans, especially these days.  I served 24 years (1973 to 1997) in the USAF and enjoyed every minute of it. When I signed up my friends and even my boyfriend gave me anti-military books and criticized me for joining.  I didn't realize I had so many 'flower child' friends!  The worst part of the military was having to leave friends and family when reassigned.  It would be great to exchange 'war stories' with my fellow vets.


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Gregory Gomez
02-04-2011 04:42pm
 USMC
Three years, lifer hair cuts.
Proud of the Marine green.
Long haired non Indians,
Putting me down, calling me baby killer.

Long black Indian hair.
Traditionally worn, people stare.
Short haired non Indians,
stating cut it short boy else beware.

Stoic Indian knows no humor.
True or false or just a rumor.
We laugh at self we laugh at you.
If you were me you'd do it for survival too.

We laugh at life, we laugh at living death.
Drunken Indian, disfunctional aftermath.
I am proud and I am ashamed,
Circumstances, situations who's to blame.
8/4/80 GGG
3rd Force Recon


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Ron MacPherson
02-18-2011 11:50am
 USMC
Three years, lifer hair cuts.
Proud of the Marine green.
Long haired non Indians,
Putting me down, calling me baby killer.

Long black Indian hair.
Traditionally worn, people stare.
Short haired non Indians,
stating cut it short boy else beware.

Stoic Indian knows no humor.
True or false or just a rumor.
We laugh at self we laugh at you.
If you were me you'd do it for survival too.

We laugh at life, we laugh at living death.
Drunken Indian, disfunctional aftermath.
I am proud and I am ashamed,
Circumstances, situations who's to blame.
8/4/80 GGG
3rd Force Recon

glad you made it back, Leatherneck....


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
John Torres
11-09-2011 05:30pm
Veteran's Day is this Friday and it's an opportunity to recognize and to honor those who served and are serving. There are many in the class of '65 who are veterans and we all have friends and family that accepted the call and did so with commitment and pride. I especially want to mention my dad, Joe Torres, who in 1945, at the age of 18, survived the sinking of the Bismarck Sea off the coast of Iwo Jima. This small aircraft carrier was attacked by two Kamikaze pilots making it the last ship of its size sunk during WWII. He had to abandon ship and thankfully he was eventually rescued from the water.
WWII vets are dwindling in number so whenever you have chance to meet one, shake his hand and thank him for his service.


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Julie Kalman Fuller
02-21-2012 04:52pm
Here's a touching Youtube video forwarded by Greg Gomez titled, 'Goodbye Vietnam'
http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=ASETse4oNlI&feature=youtube_gdata_player

A highly decorated marine's story of becoming free of the nightmares and sleepless nights caused by post traumatic stress disorder from combat in Viet Nam. Once suicidal, medicating on alcohol and drugs is now free from it all and is looking forward to a new life after over 40 years of PTSD.
(Video sponsored by Pathwaysforveterans.org)


 


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Olaf De Koning
03-06-2012 03:19am
I just want to thank Julie and Greg for making this an opportunity for Class of '65 military media.  I spent my year in 'Nam with the 4th Infantry Division in Pleiku, Central Highlands area.  I want to go on record thanking the City of Redlands for my honored reception when returning from 'Nam summer of '68.  The Daily Facts¬ģ did a lengthy interview with me about my experiences there.  Then I was contacted to see if I would consider driving a new car in the Redlands 1968 4th. of July Parade.  My passengers were to be parents of a Redlands man who was k.i.a.  I felt very honored to do this so of course I said, 'Yes.'  Turns out the parents in the rear of the convertible car I drove were Terry Frye's parents, Terry having been a long time personal friend.  A lot of emotion and a great honor.  Also would like to remember some personal friends who served from our Class:  (Of course) Terry Frye [kia], Albert O'Bannon [kia 4th. Infantry], Don Lindeman {comitted suicide after being in and out of VA facilities for PTSD, etc.] and the still living;  Tim Rochford, Roger Kooiman, Jim Eastwood and a number of others who my dementia clouded brain cannot recall right now.  We served with honor!


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Julie Kalman Fuller
09-04-2012 09:14am
From Gregory Gomez USMC:  Burial At Sea




> >>Burial at Sea (Every American Should Read This!)
> >>
> >>To only those who would and could appreciate
> >>it. This account is one of a kind. A powerful
> >>one that touches your heart. Tough duty then as
> >>it is now.
> >>
> >>Burial at Sea
> >>by Lt Col George Goodson, USMC (Ret)
> >>
> >>In my 76th year, the events of my life appear
> >>to me, from time to time, as a series of
> >>vignettes. Some were significant; most were
> >>trivial...
> >>
> >>War is the seminal event in the life of
> >>everyone that has endured it. Though I fought
> >>in Korea and the Dominican Republic and was
> >>wounded there,Vietnam was my war.
> >>
> >>Now 42 years have passed and, thankfully, I
> >>rarely think of those days in Cambodia, Laos,
> >>and the panhandle of North Vietnam where small
> >>teams of Americans and Montangards fought much
> >>larger elements of the North Vietnamese Army.
> >>Instead I see vignettes: some exotic, some
> >>mundane:
> >>
> >>*The smell of Nuc Mam.
> >>*The heat, dust, and humidity.
> >>*The blue exhaust of cycles clogging the streets.
> >>*Elephants moving silently through the tall grass.
> >>*Hard eyes behind the servile smiles of the villagers.
> >>*Standing on a mountain in Laos and hearing a tiger roar.
> >>*A young girl squeezing my hand as my medic delivered her baby.
> >>*The flowing Ao Dais of the young women biking down Tran Hung Dao.
> >>*My two years as Casualty Notification Officer
> >>in North Carolina, Virginia, and Maryland.
> >>
> >>It was late 1967. I had just returned after 18
> >>months in Vietnam. Casualties were increasing.
> >>I moved my family from Indianapolis to Norfolk,
> >>rented a house, enrolled my children in their
> >>fifth or sixth new school, and bought a second
> >>car.
> >>
> >>A week later, I put on my uniform and drove 10
> >>miles to Little Creek, Virginia. I hesitated
> >>before entering my new office. Appearance is
> >>important to career Marines. I was no longer,
> >>if ever, a poster Marine. I had returned from
> >>my third tour in Vietnam only 30 days before.
> >>At 5'9', I now weighed 128 pounds - 37 pounds
> >>below my normal weight. My uniforms fit
> >>ludicrously, my skin was yellow from malaria
> >>medication, and I think I had a twitch or two.
> >>
> >>I straightened my shoulders, walked into the
> >>office, looked at the nameplate on a Staff
> >>Sergeant's desk and said, 'Sergeant Jolly, I'm
> >>Lieutenant Colonel Goodson. Here are my orders
> >>and my Qualification Jacket.'
> >>
> >>Sergeant Jolly stood, looked carefully at me,
> >>took my orders, stuck out his hand; we shook
> >>and he asked, 'How long were you there,
> >>Colonel?' I replied '18 months this time.'
> >>Jolly breathed, you must be a slow learner
> >>Colonel.' I smiled.
> >>
> >>Jolly said, 'Colonel, I'll show you to your
> >>office and bring in the Sergeant Major. I said,
> >>'No, let's just go straight to his office.'
> >>Jolly nodded, hesitated, and lowered his voice,
> >>'Colonel, the Sergeant Major. He's been in this
> >>job two years. He's packed pretty tight. I'm
> >>worried about him.' I nodded.
> >>
> >>Jolly escorted me into the Sergeant Major's
> >>office. 'Sergeant Major, this is Colonel
> >>Goodson, the new Commanding Office. The
> >>Sergeant Major stood, extended his hand and
> >>said, 'Good to see you again, Colonel.' I
> >>responded, 'Hello Walt, how are you?' Jolly
> >>looked at me, raised an eyebrow, walked out,
> >>and closed the door.
> >>
> >>I sat down with the Sergeant Major. We had the
> >>obligatory cup of coffee and talked about
> >>mutual acquaintances. Walt's stress was
> >>palpable. Finally, I said, 'Walt, what's the
> >>h-ll's wrong?' He turned his chair, looked out
> >>the window and said, 'George, you're going to
> >>wish you were back in Nam before you leave
> >>here. I've been in the Marine Corps since 1939.
> >>I was in the Pacific 36 months, Korea for 14
> >>months, and Vietnam for 12 months... Now I come
> >>here to bury these kids. I'm putting my letter
> >>in. I can't take it anymore.' I said, 'OK Walt.
> >>If that's what you want, I'll endorse your
> >>request for retirement and do what I can to
> >>push it through Headquarters Marine Corps.'
> >>
> >>Sergeant Major Walt Xxxxx retired 12 weeks
> >>later. He had been a good Marine for 28 years,
> >>but he had seen too much death and too much
> >>suffering. He was used up.
> >>
> >>Over the next 16 months, I made 28 death
> >>notifications, conducted 28 military funerals,
> >>and made 30 notifications to the families of
> >>Marines that were severely wounded or missing
> >>in action. Most of the details of those
> >>casualty notifications have now, thankfully,
> >>faded from memory. Four, however, remain.
> >>
> >>MY FIRST NOTIFICATION
> >>My third or fourth day in Norfolk, I was
> >>notified of the death of a 19 year old Marine.
> >>This notification came by telephone from
> >>Headquarters Marine Corps. The information
> >>detailed:
> >>
> >>*Name, rank, and serial number.
> >>*Name, address, and phone number of next of kin.
> >>*Date of and limited details about the Marine's death.
> >>*Approximate date the body would arrive at the Norfolk Naval Air Station.
> >>*A strong recommendation on whether the casket should be opened or closed.
> >>
> >>The boy's family lived over the border in North
> >>Carolina, about 60 miles away. I drove there in
> >>a Marine Corps staff car. Crossing the state
> >>line intoNorth Carolina, I stopped at a small
> >>country store / service station / Post Office.
> >>I went in to ask directions.
> >>
> >>Three people were in the store. A man and woman
> >>approached the small Post Office window. The
> >>man held a package. The Store owner walked up
> >>and addressed them by name, 'Hello John. Good
> >>morning Mrs. Cooper.'
> >>
> >>I was stunned. My casualty's next-of-kin's name was John Cooper!
> >>
> >>I hesitated, then stepped forward and said, 'I
> >>beg your pardon. Are you Mr. and Mrs. John
> >>Cooper of (address.)
> >>
> >>The father looked at me - I was in uniform -
> >>and then, shaking, bent at the waist, he
> >>vomited. His wife looked horrified at him and
> >>then at me. Understanding came into her eyes
> >>and she collapsed in slow motion. I think I
> >>caught her before she hit the floor.
> >>
> >>The owner took a bottle of whiskey out of a
> >>drawer and handed it to Mr. Cooper who drank. I
> >>answered their questions for a few minutes.
> >>Then I drove them home in my staff car. The
> >>storeowner locked the store and followed in
> >>their truck. We stayed an hour or so until the
> >>family began arriving.
> >>
> >>I returned the storeowner to his business. He
> >>thanked me and said, 'Mister, I wouldn't have
> >>your job for a million dollars.' I shook his
> >>hand and said; 'Neither would I.'
> >>
> >>I vaguely remember the drive back to Norfolk.
> >>Violating about five Marine Corps regulations,
> >>I drove the staff car straight to my house. I
> >>sat with my family while they ate dinner, went
> >>into the den, closed the door, and sat there
> >>all night, alone.
> >>
> >>My Marines steered clear of me for days. I had
> >>made my first death notification.
> >>
> >>THE FUNERALS
> >>Weeks passed with more notifications and more
> >>funerals. I borrowed Marines from the local
> >>Marine Corps Reserve and taught them to conduct
> >>a military funeral: how to carry a casket, how
> >>to fire the volleys and how to fold the flag.
> >>
> >>When I presented the flag to the mother, wife,
> >>or father, I always said, 'All Marines share in
> >>your grief.' I had been instructed to say, 'On
> >>behalf of a grateful nation....' I didn't think
> >>the nation was grateful, so I didn't say that.
> >>
> >>Sometimes, my emotions got the best of me and I
> >>couldn't speak. When that happened, I just
> >>handed them the flag and touched a shoulder.
> >>They would look at me and nod. Once a mother
> >>said to me, 'I'm so sorry you have this
> >>terrible job.' My eyes filled with tears and I
> >>leaned over and kissed her.
> >>
> >>ANOTHER NOTIFICATION
> >>Six weeks after my first notification, I had
> >>another. This was a young PFC. I drove to his
> >>mother's house. As always, I was in uniform and
> >>driving a Marine Corps staff car. I parked in
> >>front of the house, took a deep breath, and
> >>walked towards the house. Suddenly the door
> >>flew open, a middle-aged woman rushed out. She
> >>looked at me and ran across the yard, screaming
> >>'NO! NO! NO! NO!'
> >>
> >>I hesitated. Neighbors came out. I ran to her,
> >>grabbed her, and whispered stupid things to
> >>reassure her. She collapsed. I picked her up
> >>and carried her into the house. Eight or nine
> >>neighbors followed. Ten or fifteen later, the
> >>father came in followed by ambulance personnel.
> >>I have no recollection of leaving.
> >>
> >>The funeral took place about two weeks later.
> >>We went through the drill. The mother never
> >>looked at me. The father looked at me once and
> >>shook his head sadly.
> >>
> >>ANOTHER NOTIFICATION
> >>One morning, as I walked in the office, the
> >>phone was ringing. Sergeant Jolly held the
> >>phone up and said, 'You've got another one,
> >>Colonel.' I nodded, walked into my office,
> >>picked up the phone, took notes, thanked the
> >>officer making the call, I have no idea why,
> >>and hung up. Jolly, who had listened, came in
> >>with a special Telephone Directory that
> >>translates telephone numbers into the person's
> >>address and place of employment.
> >>
> >>The father of this casualty was a Longshoreman.
> >>He lived a mile from my office. I called the
> >>Longshoreman's Union Office and asked for the
> >>Business Manager. He answered the phone, I told
> >>him who I was, and asked for the father's
> >>schedule.
> >>
> >>The Business Manager asked, 'Is it his son?' I
> >>said nothing. After a moment, he said, in a low
> >>voice, 'Tom is at home today.' I said, 'Don't
> >>call him. I'll take care of that.' The Business
> >>Manager said, 'Aye, Aye Sir,' and then
> >>explained, 'Tom and I were Marines in WWII.'
> >>
> >>I got in my staff car and drove to the house. I
> >>was in uniform. I knocked and a woman in her
> >>early forties answered the door. I saw
> >>instantly that she was clueless. I asked, 'Is
> >>Mr. Smith home?' She smiled pleasantly and
> >>responded, 'Yes, but he's eating breakfast now.
> >>Can you come back later?' I said, 'I'm sorry.
> >>It's important. I need to see him now.'
> >>
> >>She nodded, stepped back into the beach house and said, 'Tom, it's for you.'
> >>
> >>A moment later, a ruddy man in his late
> >>forties, appeared at the door. He looked at me,
> >>turned absolutely pale, steadied himself, and
> >>said, 'Jesus Christ man, he's only been there
> >>three weeks!'
> >>
> >>Months passed. More notifications and more
> >>funerals. Then one day while I was running,
> >>Sergeant Jolly stepped outside the building and
> >>gave a loud whistle, two fingers in his mouth.
> >>I never could do that҆ and held an imaginary
> >>phone to his ear.
> >>
> >>Another call from Headquarters Marine Corps. I
> >>took notes, said, 'Got it.' and hung up. I had
> >>stopped saying 'Thank You' long ago.
> >>
> >>Jolly, 'Where?'
> >>
> >>Me, 'Eastern Shore of Maryland. The father is a
> >>retired Chief Petty Officer. His brother will
> >>accompany the body back from Vietnam...'
> >>
> >>Jolly shook his head slowly, straightened, and
> >>then said, 'This time of day, it'll take three
> >>hours to get there and back. I'll call the
> >>Naval Air Station and borrow a helicopter. And
> >>I'll have Captain Tolliver get one of his men
> >>to meet you and drive you to the Chief's home.'
> >>
> >>He did, and 40 minutes later, I was knocking on
> >>the father's door. He opened the door, looked
> >>at me, then looked at the Marine standing at
> >>parade rest beside the car, and asked, 'Which
> >>one of my boys was it, Colonel?'
> >>
> >>I stayed a couple of hours, gave him all the
> >>information, my office and home phone number
> >>and told him to call me, anytime.
> >>
> >>He called me that evening about 2300 (11:00
> >>PM). 'I've gone through my boy's papers and
> >>found his will. He asked to be buried at sea.
> >>Can you make that happen?' I said, 'Yes I can,
> >>Chief. I can and I will.'
> >>
> >>My wife who had been listening said, 'Can you
> >>do that?' I told her, 'I have no idea. But I'm
> >>going to break my ass trying.'
> >>
> >>I called Lieutenant General Alpha Bowser,
> >>Commanding General, Fleet Marine Force
> >>Atlantic, at home about 2330, explained the
> >>situation, and asked, 'General, can you get me
> >>a quick appointment with the Admiral at
> >>Atlantic Fleet Headquarters?' General Bowser
> >>said,' George, you be there tomorrow at 0900.
> >>He will see you.
> >>
> >>I was and the Admiral did. He said coldly, 'How
> >>can the Navy help the Marine Corps, Colonel.' I
> >>told him the story. He turned to his Chief of
> >>Staff and said, 'Which is the sharpest
> >>destroyer in port?' The Chief of Staff
> >>responded with a name.
> >>
> >>The Admiral called the ship, 'Captain, you're
> >>going to do a burial at sea. You'll report to a
> >>Marine Lieutenant Colonel Goodson until this
> >>mission is completed...'
> >>
> >>He hung up, looked at me, and said, 'The next
> >>time you need a ship, Colonel, call me. You
> >>don't have to sic Al Bowser on my ass.' I
> >>responded, 'Aye Aye, Sir' and got the h-ll out
> >>of his office.
> >>
> >>I went to the ship and met with the Captain,
> >>Executive Officer, and the Senior Chief.
> >>Sergeant Jolly and I trained the ship's crew
> >>for four days. Then Jolly raised a question
> >>none of us had thought of. He said, 'These
> >>government caskets are air tight. How do we
> >>keep it from floating?'
> >>
> >>All the high priced help including me sat there
> >>looking dumb. Then the Senior Chief stood and
> >>said, 'Come on Jolly. I know a bar where the
> >>retired guys from World War II hang out.'
> >>
> >>They returned a couple of hours later, slightly
> >>the worst for wear, and said, 'It's simple; we
> >>cut four 12' holes in the outer shell of the
> >>casket on each side and insert 300 lbs of lead
> >>in the foot end of the casket. We can handle
> >>that, no sweat.'
> >>
> >>The day arrived. The ship and the sailors
> >>looked razor sharp. General Bowser, the
> >>Admiral, a US Senator, and a Navy Band were on
> >>board. The sealed casket was brought aboard and
> >>taken below for modification. The ship got
> >>underway to the 12-fathom depth.
> >>
> >>The sun was hot. The ocean flat. The casket was
> >>brought aft and placed on a catafalque. The
> >>Chaplin spoke. The volleys were fired. The flag
> >>was removed, folded, and I gave it to the
> >>father. The band played 'Eternal Father Strong
> >>to Save.' The casket was raised slightly at the
> >>head and it slid into the sea.
> >>
> >>The heavy casket plunged straight down about
> >>six feet. The incoming water collided with the
> >>air pockets in the outer shell. The casket
> >>stopped abruptly, rose straight out of the
> >>water about three feet, stopped, and slowly
> >>slipped back into the sea. The air bubbles
> >>rising from the sinking casket sparkled in the
> >>in the sunlight as the casket disappeared from
> >>sight forever....
> >>
> >>The next morning I called a personal friend,
> >>Lieutenant General Oscar Peatross, at
> >>Headquarters Marine Corps and said, 'General,
> >>get me out of here. I can't take this anymore.'
> >>I was transferred two weeks later.
> >>
> >>I was a good Marine but, after 17 years, I had
> >>seen too much death and too much suffering. I
> >>was used up.
> >>
> >>Vacating the house, my family and I drove to
> >>the office in a two-car convoy. I said my
> >>goodbyes. Sergeant Jolly walked out with me. He
> >>waved at my family, looked at me with tears in
> >>his eyes, came to attention, saluted, and said,
> >>'Well Done, Colonel. Well Done.'
> >>
> >>I felt as if I had received the Medal of Honor!
> >>
> >>
> >>A veteran is someone who, at one point, wrote a blank
> >>check made payable to 'The United States of America'
> >>for an amount of 'up to and including their life.'
> >>To serve is an Honor, and there are way too
> >>many people in this country who no longer
> >>understand that.
> >>
> >>
> >>Your Freedom Wasn't & Still Isn't Free!
> >>



Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Olaf De Koning
09-20-2012 09:16pm
The Colonel mentioned in this last Memory was undoubtedly the kind of officer that any of us would follow into battle.  We all experienced soldiers like that, whether officer or enlisted and would do nearly anything for them.  In 1965, most of us were thinking about what girl we liked and analyzing ways we could convey that to her and possibly obtain a date.  Between that, getting the hottest car we could, getting out of high school and thinking about college, vocation or combination of the two, we ebbed out two to four years.  For a lot of us, 1967 found us in the position of 'high school kids' having endured a few weeks of BCT at Fort Ord, CA., then training at 'Tigerland' in Fort Polk, Louisiana.  A month after that, we were in the paddies of Vietnam humping patrols with an M-60 and a couple of hundred rounds of belt link 7.62.  Needless to say, we grew up in a hurry.  My wife and I now live in Oceanside, fairly near Camp Pendleton, USMC.  We have marines on every side of our apartment.  When I talk to these brave kids, I sometimes mention my service in Vietnam.  Most of them look at me with some sort of awe and thank my for my service.  That humbles me, especially if they have been deployed to Afghanistan or Iraq and are being sent off again.  At night I often pray for these kids to come back safely;  or to just come back alive.  I see them at the VA when I go for appointments.  Their eyes often tell their stories.

A few months ago, I had the great honor of once again standing on the beach of U.S. Military property at Camp Pendleton to give my daughter away.  It was my duty to give the 'Charge to the Bride and Groom.'  The outgoing Commanding General of Camp Pendleton had arranged for us to use the base for her wedding.  I can tell you my eyes filled with tears more than once in commencement of the wedding, knowing that so many brave souls on the base are serving overseas in the war zones.  I, perhaps more than 'normal,' am especially thankful, having been born in Holland and being allowed TO CHOOSE to become a U.S. citizen, for the freedom that our troops keep securing for us and am honored to have served in Vietnam with many of the rest of you.  Please, NEVER take this precious country for granted;  God has blessed it and continues to do so in spite of all it's ailments.


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
Quote in Reply
Ronald MacPherson
10-05-2012 01:23am
Just revisited this site again. Wanted to mention that last year I was finally given a welcome home that was not where I was spat on and called a baby killer. Her in Hawaii the FoodBank put on a ceremony honoring those that received a purple heart. I am one. One medal, that if I could go back and never receive it, I would. Also just finished reading a book that hit home fully. Greg Gomez, if you haven't read it already, I strongly recommend you pick up a copy of Fredrick Downs, Jr. s book Aftermath.. It hit home in so many ways. Finally felt like coming home was not a bad thing. Aloha to all the others who served.. In country from June 66 to May 68. Bravo Company, 3rd Amtrac Battalion, 1st Marine Division..


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
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Juliet(Julie) Kalman Fuller
06-22-2014 12:32pm
Here's a cool Navy tribute...Jacksonville area where we live is a Navy town so we're surrounded by some of these wonderful guys - active and retired:
http://blog.theveteranssite.com/a-fun-us-navy-tribute/?utm_source=social&utm_medium=vetfan&utm_campaign=a-fun-us-navy-tribute&utm_term=20140620


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
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Juliet(Julie) Kalman Fuller
08-29-2014 11:48am
I connected with Tommy Taylor '64 on FB today and he mentioned another FB site, specifically for Vietnam Vets:  Vietnam Veterans from Redlands, California.  Many from our class have joined but if not, check it out...


Re: Veterans' Memories, Thoughts - Classmate Comments
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Juliet (Julie) Kalman Fuller
02-26-2015 09:14am
Olaf DeKoning (thanks, Olaf!) just sent a link to a wonderful video about Vietnam Vets 40 Years Later  that is so touching and sobering, yet uplifting.  Here it is:

http://www.youtube.com/watch_popup?v=LemllfcAY8A&sns=em


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Julie Kalman Fuller
06-09-2015 03:21pm
Lucy Villafan Saldana is preparing posters of veterans and deceased vets for the reunion...will you all reply to this if you know of class vets?  Thanks





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