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Return to Vietnam

A veteran, his daughter, their journey

Lighting a candle for a fallen friend

November
11

On our way back to Ho Chi Minh City today, we drove by a Catholic church in Cu Chi – probably the same parish that helped supply those rabbits my father’s unit gave to the villagers 40 years ago. The church was closed, but my father left a lit candle in the courtyard as a Veterans Day tribute to his friend Lt. Joe Lingle, the Virginia Military Institute graduate killed April 25, 1967 – a month after he and my father had arrived in Vietnam.

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Joe and my father had met at the Infantry Officers Basic Course at Fort Benning, Georgia, and had served as instructors with the school’s weapons department before they were both assigned to the 25th Infantry Division in Vietnam.

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On Memorial Day a few months ago, my father escorted Joe’s mother at the unveiling of a war memorial in Hanover County, Virginia, honoring the county’s fallen soldiers. Mrs. Lingle was very moved by my father’s participation in the event, and she dedicated a brick for Col. Neroulias on the memorial walkway.

Through this blog, the Lingle family is now following his return to Vietnam and the places where he and Joe served together.

This entry was posted on Sunday, November 11th, 2007 at 3:08 pm by Nicole Neroulias. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
Category: Vietnam veterans, Vietnam veterans

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About this blog
"Return to Vietnam" chronicles the journey of Col. Andonios Neroulias USA (Ret.) of Briarcliff Manor, NY, joined by his daughter, staff writer Nicole Neroulias, to the country he fought in 40 years ago. They are traveling with Vietnam veterans and Rotarians from Rockland County and other parts of the country. Check this blog for daily posts, photos, recordings and slideshows about their experiences.
About the authors
Nicole and Andonios Neroulias

Nicole Neroulias grew up in Briarcliff Manor, NY, and graduated from Cornell University and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She has covered religion and city news in Cyprus, Connecticut and California, where she earned several fellowships and prizes, including a national Religion Newswriters Association award. She joined The Journal News in early 2007 and also teaches journalism at Columbia.

Col. Andonios Neroulias emigrated from Greece in 1956 and was commissioned an officer through the ROTC program of the City College of NY. From 1967-68, he served in Vietnam with the U.S. Army's 25th Infantry (Tropic Lightning) Division, whose main base was in Cu Chi, known for its intricate Viet Cong tunnels. Among his military awards are the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star, the Meritorious Service Medal and the Combat Infantryman Badge. He is retired from the U.S. Army Reserve and lives in Briarcliff Manor, NY.
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