Vietnam Veterans Posts

Dishonorable Soldiers

Ditty

Soldier Jeanie Ditty and her boyfriend.

Most often I am compelled to write about the ways in which we need to honor our veterans and military families. This compulsion is the result of growing up a Gold Star daughter during the height of the Vietnam War. I wrote After the Flag has been Folded (William Morrow) for the very purpose of setting the record straight about those who served, and how they and their families were mistreated as a result of simply doing what their country required of them. I knew my father to be a more honorable man than the crazed soldiers depicted in all those Vietnam war flicks that Hollywood was cranking out. Most soldiers I’ve come into contact with over the years have been honorable people. They don’t seek the limelight. They don’t consider themselves heroes. They go out of their way to serve others. And most importantly, they are there for each other. read more

Death without a Funeral

Twins

This was going to be the blog post in which I announced that daughter Konnie and her husband are expecting wee ones.

I had it all written in my mind.

I was going to share with you how long a struggle this has been – five years. And I was going to talk about how many prayers have been poured out on behalf of this couple who have longed to be parents.

I’ve mentioned their infertility struggle in a couple of other posts. We’ve had those discussions about how our society has turned adoption and infertility into money-making ventures of the highest order. So please, understand, I’m not interested in continuing that discussion right now. read more

HEROES OF HOPE AND HEALING

This was posted first at the Vietnam Memorial Wall Foundation blog. 

By Karen Spears Zacharias

Some people know them as the “Yellow Hatters”, the familiar park service volunteers dressed in bright yellow shirts and matching hats who stand ready at The Wall. Ready to help with a pencil tracing of a name. Ready with a ladder. Ready with a bottle of water. Ready with pack of Kleenexes. Ready to tell people to turn off their cell phones. Oftentimes, they are ready just to listen, and to offer a welcome hug.

Around our house, we know them simply as “The Uncles.” They are the men who served in Vietnam and then came home to do just as they promised to do – Never Forget. They pay their deepest respects by volunteering at The Wall. Digging deep into their own pockets, they travel in from across the nation and spend days standing guard at The Wall, in wicked heat and blustery wind, handing out pencils and sheets of white paper, guiding people to names they cannot find. read more

The Things Unspoken

Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.

– John Adams-

The park ranger welcoming us to the old house at Peacefield wore a twine and bead necklace snug against his neck. I noticed it before he turned and unlocked the door to the library that John Quincy Adams son built for him.

He’d asked, in his will, that the library be built of stone, and the son complied — eventually. It took Charles Adams twenty-two years to do it, but the library, known as the Stone Library, stands today as a testament to thought and detail that went into the construction. read more