Sunday, January 27, 2013

Vietnam "Peace" Plus Forty Years January 27, 2013

Every year on this date, I reflect on "Peace" in Vietnam, achieved by a document from the Paris Peace Talks after years of negotiations, and years of war.  Actually, I think about the Vietnam "Conflict" somehow almost daily.  My twenty West Point classmates who died as a result of the war weigh heavy on my heart frequently.  As a veteran of the Conflict, I pray that we, as a nation, learned something that makes the losses and expense worthwhile.  I still can't tell if we did.  What do you think?

I've blogged about this before, including:  peace-in-vietnam-39th-anniversary

38th-anniversary cease fire in Vietnam

Memorial Day, Grief and The Wall ,

 Memorial Day: The Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Below are some of the images that remind me of various aspects of my year in Vietnam serving as a helicopter pilot, instructor pilot, maintenance officer and other roles in the Aviation Section of the 45th Engineer Group. I took almost all of these, except those with me in the picture.  Included are Vietnam 45th engineer Group venues in I Corps (we flew for our three battalions and Group HQ), Saigon, The Bob Hope USO Show on Christmas Eve 1970, R&R in Sidney, Australia, Khe Sanh during Lam Sanh 719, and a few faces of Vietnam- my favorite of which are the Montagnards with cross-bows).


  1. These pictures bring back memories of an era we would all like to forget; however, today reminds me more and more of Viet Nam. Why do we have to kill each other for what? I believe Churchill said it... "It is better to jaw jaw, than to war war." Maybe some day we will learn! mas

  2. Thanks for your comments, mas.
    I always liked the reminder about war from Pete Seeger,"Where Have All the Flowers Gone?"

    "When will they ever learn?" apj

  3. They are not learning very fast, and they are making many of the same mistakes. I may not be a great admirer of Chuck Hagel, but I am very distressed at the questioning. The bravest warmakers always seem to be those who never went to war, and won't be fighting this one...

  4. Just found your blog by accident; we probably crossed paths, I was the 45th Group photographer during Lam Son 719. I volunteered for that position after the previous guy rotated out, I started as quality control on roads, air strips, and fire base construction. I drove to Khe Sanh several times, and flew up there in a helo a few times - you may have been the pilot. I am now a retired college professor, and Vietnam is never far from my thoughts.

    1. Hi Jerry and thanks for your comments and your service. Do you still have those photos? It was an interesting time and historical process in Lam Son 719. Peace, Pat

  5. I have a few photos taken with my personal camera - the ones taken for the Army (slides and B&W) were all turned in. I will dig around and see what I can find and send you some.