March 30, 1973, saw the withdrawal of American troops from South Vietnam. Unlike previous and current wars, many returned home to the scorn of citizens. Due to negative portrayals in television and movies, many hid their service to America for years.
Thanks to U.S. Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., ranking member of the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs, March 30 was designated as “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day” in 2010, to give thanks and honors to Vietnam veterans they did not receive long ago.
Burr said, “Our soldiers served honorably and bravely in Vietnam. Unfortunately, they arrived home to a country in political turmoil, and never received the recognition they deserve. By setting March 30 aside as a day to focus on our Vietnam veterans, we can show our unified gratitude for their service and the sacrifices that these veterans made on our behalf.”
Few communities around the nation took notice.
I hope all take just a moment this week and reach out to any Vietnam veteran you may know and just simply say “thank you and welcome home.”
Soldiers don’t get to choose their wars, but communities can choose to thank them for serving.