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Letter: Memorial Day reawakens traumatic wartime memories

As we near another Memorial Day weekend I hope everyone appreciates and respects all those who served.

As the saying goes “War is Hell.” And for anyone who served in a war zone no explanation is needed. I came home from a war zone 50 years ago April 20.

As a 19-year-old Marine, I found myself in Vietnam fighting for my country and my own self-preservation. We were young and soldiers was a movie and it was also what the fighting force in Nam consisted of, teenagers.

Back in the 60s we went from high school to military service and usually within six months you were in Nam trying to stay alive. Talk about a culture shock, it was like a real-life twilight zone. All my friends growing up on Seneca Street are veterans and most went to Nam and way too many are deceased.

Soldiers in all wars from World War I to Afghanistan have suffered from their tours in combat and everyone reacts differently.

Weather it’s post-traumatic stress disorder, physical disabilities or the ghost in the room Agent Orange. They all keep claiming Vietnam veterans every day, and yes, “War is Hell.”

And finally, to all the Veterans who served. Thank You for your sacrifice and service, job well done.

Phil Ryan, Vietnam Vet


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