Richard Young

>Richard YoungRich, who lives in Clarkson, Wa, served in Vietnam during the Tet Offensive (1967-1968) with the United States Navy. He is the owner/moderator of the on-line chat group, English Practice and World Peace on Paltalk.


The pain of a thousand
Veterans in my ears:
Paltalk brings me
To tears…

Wanting to share
Wanting to care

As if tears can wash
Away the ravages of war

Gone to serve
Gone to say an oath
To serve God and Country.

Not wanting to die –
But suffering worse –
To live when close
Friends die instead.

Bitter feelings of
Coming home:
Of why me not him?
Then the country
Turning Treason on Vets
Who served proudly.


Anger with our
Country and our people
Who forced us
To go to war.

Who drafted us
Into service, then rejected us
For serving!


What did we do wrong?
Serve proudly?
Yes we did!!

Fight bravely?
Yes we did!!
We are the proud.
We are the ones.

Our country has broken us
Even when the enemy
Could not.

We were defeated, not by Vietnam
But by the USA.

We were defeated
By our own family,
Friends, loved ones

And all those who
Did not support us
Like Hanoi Jane Fonda!

You broke our hearts
And our minds.
Our bodies
And our spirits…
More than the bullets
Killed us on the battlefield.

Your words and actions
Killed us
When we returned to you.

You spat on us!!

You rejected us!!

Then accepted with honor
Those who ran to Canada
To avoid duty.

You took our honor
And gave it to traitors!!
Gave us shame!!

Through our depression
A strange thing happened –
We awoke…
This sleepy thing
Called Veterans


And we united
All Branches of service
Together as one

As an armed forces combined
To give comfort
And caring and sharing.

We will overcome!
We will be proud!
We will hold our heads high!

Through our shame we have arisen!
As a force of one army
We shall change
We shall change

We shall defeat all those
Who tried to shame us.

We stand proud
And say this to our Country…

You have stained the flag
With the blood of our fallen Brothers and Sisters!
You have made Veterans take their own lives
After they returned home!

Their blood is on your hands now.

Because when you shame us…
You also shame yourselves
Because, my friends –
We are you!!

We are your Sons and Daughters
Your Grandsons and Granddaughters
We are your Aunts and your Uncles
We are your Cousins
We are your Brothers and Sisters
We are your Loved Ones.

We are in essence

Now who has the shame?
Now who has the pain?
Not us!
We finally hold our heads high
And say proudly to you…

Yes we are Vietnam Veterans!!!!

We are the ones
Who fought the fight!
We never ran
We never crawled away…
Even though, by God, sometimes we wanted to.

We tasted fear…
As all soldiers do.
We overcame our enemies over there
And now
We will overcome you.

Perhaps if only one thing happens
From this event
And then we will be proud of America.

May America never again be ashamed
of her Vets who proudly
served and died

But more importantly
May the Vets who proudly
Served and Died
For their Country


Author’s Note: This is dedicated to my fellow brothers and sisters and freely given to them for their use to be shared or printed anywhere anytime for no profit – if printed for profit then it is my profit!

And most importantly…

Welcome Home!!!