July 27, 2015

Gloucester, MA. July, 2015

For those of us of a certain age, it's almost impossible not to have some emotional reaction to memories of the Vietnam War. (I had won the era's draft lottery -- my birthday had come up #16 -- and I was summoned for my physical. Which I failed. A long story.) Earlier this month, 'The Wall that Heals,' a Vietnam Veterans traveling memorial came to Gloucester and I went to see it just as it was opening to the public one Saturday morning. Of course, I got teary. And so did another early visitor, a big, butch Vietnam veteran who seemed mighty uncomfortable letting people see him cry. The Veterans Aid volunteers approached him gingerly, and it was touching to hear them ask, "Are you OK, buddy? Can I help you out? Want to take a walk?"

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