It has been 47 years since our forces came home from the war in Vietnam. As in all conflicts, these Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coasties did not ask to go to war. Our country sent them, and they willingly and bravely stepped forward to do their duty. Some volunteered to go; some were drafted; all served honorably and accomplished their missions. And after enduring the hardships and horrors of war, they returned to an America that did not do right by them. As a country, we should be ashamed of the way we treated these great young Americans who had served in an environment that most cannot imagine.
But these tremendous Veterans did not retreat upon their return. They suffered the insults, the misperceptions, and the misplaced anger, and continued on with their new mission: readjusting to the civilian world, and rebuilding their lives. They did this with the quiet professionalism and focus with which they had succeeded on the battlefield. And they did this with the solemn commitment to never allow America’s Veterans to be treated that way again. Their commitment is paying off daily as we welcome home today’s Warriors, and provide them the welcome and support that were denied the heroes of Vietnam.
Today all of America should pause to remember and thank our Vietnam Veterans. We at Homes For Our Troops thank you for your sacrifice, service, and dedication to making life better for today’s Veterans. We are better able to assist these returning women and men because of your insistence that America recognize and care for our returning service members. You have our utmost respect and admiration. Welcome home!