Tuesday, March 24, 2015

During my first tour of duty in Vietnam, 1970, I was serving with a military intelligence unit in the Delta Region. One evening a friend took me to eat at a local restaurant near the ferry landing. Two young Vietnamese men walked by our table and spoke to my friend Bob, who was fluent in their language. He then asked me if it was alright for them to join us at our table. We have a great, real and lively conversation about our lives and future hopes, not once did we talk about the war or what my job was in the Army. Later that evening, when Bob and I returned to our unit he told me that one of the men was a Captain in the North Vietnamese Army and the other was a Sargent on the Viet Cong. That moment changed my view on the war and what was it really about. That evening was just about four young men sharing all that we had in common; family, friends, and hope for the future.

—Neil O’Donnell