Local VFW doesn’t allow water damage to dampen National Vietnam War Veterans Day
By WVUA23 Student News Reporter Caleb Aguayo
Tuscaloosa Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6022 held an event on March 29 to recognize local Vietnam veterans on National Vietnam War Veterans Day. The 29th of March was chosen to honor Vietnam veterans because it is on March 29, 1973, that the United States pulled its last combat troops out of Vietnam.
Celebrations like this are one major change from the time of the Vietnam War, said VFW member Dwight Blake. For most Vietnam veterans, there was never an official “welcome home,” he said.
Instead, when veterans came home on planes and walked through their local airports they weren’t treated well.
“Nobody came up to shake their hands or tell them what a good job they did,” Blake said.
That lack of appreciation is one reason why VFW Post 6022 chooses to serve its veterans and community. Members said they host events for holidays and other occasions with the support of the community.
Despite gains made by the group, problems arose just before the Vietnam War Veterans Day event. The main event room could not be used because it was flooded due to a busted water pipe. A local company was vacuuming water from the room during the Vietnam veterans ceremony.
“Well OK, today we had a flood. So we decided to go ahead and do it anyway because a little water is not going to deter us from welcoming home our Vietnam veteran friends, our brothers and sisters that fought in Vietnam,” said Post 6022 Commander Walter Turner.