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Return to Vietnam

A veteran, his daughter, their journey

Return from Vietnam: Then and now

December
19

In the previous post, my father recalled surprising his family with his first return from Vietnam 40 years ago. babathen.jpgAs he explained, it wasn’t the smoothest transition, but several of the veterans we traveled with last month and others we’ve spoken to recently had far more challenging homecomings, including taunting cab drivers, dismissive family members and lots of physical/mental health problems. Of course, he also had the (dubious) benefit of coming from war-torn circumstances himself, and that significantly colored his family’s perspective of the Vietnam War and aftermath.

Anyway, he considered himself lucky.

It’s now been a month since my father’s second return from Vietnam.

babanow.jpg

For him, this experience brought some closure on his war memories, but also gave him new memories – of a country at peace. And, instead of losing friends, this time, he came home with new friends, too. (And a few left behind, but in a good way.)

Click on the audio link below to hear my father’s thoughts on his first and second returns from Vietnam.

Download:

Check back Dec. 28 for the final slideshow version of our story.

Happy Holidays – and especially – Peace on Earth.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, December 19th, 2007 at 12:00 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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One Response to “Return from Vietnam: Then and now”

  1. Jim Murtaugh

    I was a Marine in Vietnam in 1967-68.I first returned to Vietnam in 2000.Have returned seven times.Have vietnamese friends for life.Life changing event.Peace at last.Wish more
    veterans would do the same!

    (Sgt.)Jim Murtaugh

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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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