October 22, 2013 |
Neuris Richard Feliz, 29, a former power-generation specialist for the U.S. Army, lives in a small apartment above a Lancaster storefront. In the dining room sits his photo in green uniform, against the backdrop of an American flag. On a shelf, a horse-head profile on the yellow shield of his First Cavalry Division. Buried in a closet are the pictures Feliz hides - corpses shredded by Iraqi roadside bombs; forward-operating-base ceremonies for fallen comrades whose lives were memorialized with Battlefield Crosses made from their helmets, boots, and rifles.
October 9, 2013 |
ABC's famous late-'80s show China Beach premiered on April 27, 1988, with a shot of a beautiful young woman in a red one-piece swimsuit, walking across a gorgeous beach. She settles down, facing the ocean, perhaps to catch some rays or read a paperback. Not a minute goes by before everything is turned upside-down: We hear bomb blasts in the distance, the sounds of helicopters closing in, and screams. Men screaming in pain. The woman, Colleen McMurphy, rushes off, leaving the idyllic beach and stepping into what looks like a totally foreign universe - an Army field hospital.
September 29, 2013 |
Jose Aponte, a 20-year Army veteran who served in Desert Storm and Granada, can't sit in dark movie theaters or crowded restaurants without breaking into a sweat. He can't sleep for more than four hours every seven days. At his homecoming party in Pennsauken in 1997, he remembered how he panicked when he heard the township siren. "I yelled, 'Incoming!' and immediately ducked under the table," Aponte said. "People were laughing at me, but they didn't understand. It was serious for me. " Sixteen years after returning home, he still suffers from combat stress - never letting his guard down and always scanning the room.
September 27, 2013 |
A VETERANS GROUP wants to see some of its kind - actual vets - working at Philadelphia's self-described "one-stop shop" for the city's nearly 80,000 veterans. The Veterans Advisory Commission enjoys prime real estate on the first floor of City Hall, but neither of its two full-time employees has served in the military. Ari Merretazon and his faith-based nonprofit group, Pointman Soldiers Heart Ministry, say that could alienate returning soldiers. "There is no greater citizen than someone who is willing to lay down their lives for their fellow citizens and their families," said Merretazon, a decorated Army veteran of Vietnam.
August 22, 2013 |
Curtis J. Searl Jr., 65, of Moorestown, who retired as a consultant for Wylie Laboratories in Lexington Park, Md., in 2012, died of cancer Wednesday, Aug. 14, at Virtua Marlton medical center. A 1965 graduate of Monsignor Bonner High School, Mr. Searl was an Army helicopter mechanic from 1966 to 1969 who saw combat in Vietnam, his wife, Barbara, said. He earned a bachelor's degree in business at Temple University and then began a 25-year career as a logistics engineer for the Naval Air Systems Command office in Northeast Philadelphia.
July 29, 2013 |
A LONG-DESIRED makeover of the Philadelphia Vietnam Veterans Memorial appears to finally be close at hand. Terry Williamson, president of the memorial's fund board, said yesterday that work is expected to begin in the fall to open the Spruce Street side of the 26-year-old memorial to make it more visible to passers-by. The Society Hill memorial is walled off by eight 7-foot-high, 5-foot-wide granite panels that feature scenes of the war. Williamson said the $500,000 remodeling effort would entail having the panels repositioned in two semicircles around the heart of the memorial: the wall that features the names of the 646 local soldiers who died in Vietnam.
July 17, 2013
LOUIS NAMM of Thorofare, N.J., is the Phillies' winner of Major League Baseball and People magazine's "Tribute for Heroes" campaign that honors veterans and military service members. Namm, along with representatives of the other 29 teams in baseball, will be recognized at the 2013 All-Star Game at Citi Field in New York tonight in a pregame ceremony. Namm was a sergeant in the Vietnam War when he stepped on a land mine and lost both legs. He sacrificed his body so that his men's lives would be spared, earning two Purple Hearts.
June 28, 2013
Curtis Tarr, 88, the former head of the Selective Service System who oversaw the lottery for the draft during the Vietnam War, died of pneumonia Friday at his home in Walnut Creek, Calif., his daughter, Pam Tarr, said Wednesday. President Richard Nixon appointed Mr. Tarr as director of the Selective Service System in 1970. The nation had held its first lottery drawing for the draft in December 1969, and Mr. Tarr was responsible for implementing the changes, said Dick Flahavan, spokesman for the Selective Service.
June 8, 2013 |
For some visitors, the black wall of names slanting across a Mount Laurel field Thursday was too painful to approach. Still others stepped so close to the traveling Vietnam Veterans Memorial model that it seemed they would enter into it if they could, touching one or two among its 58,000 names of the Vietnam War's combat dead and gazing for many moments. "Even though it's so long ago, I still remember the two soldiers coming to say he's dead," said Jean M. Murray of Mount Laurel.
June 5, 2013 |
A replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, an acclaimed work of architecture and a solemn reminder of the human toll of the Vietnam War, will make its way Tuesday to Mount Laurel, where it will remain through the weekend. Nearly 250 feet long and bearing the names of the more than 58,000 servicemen and women who died in the war, the "Wall That Heals" is due to cross the Delaware Memorial Bridge about 8 a.m., travel north on I-295, and arrive with a motorcycle escort in Moorestown two hours later.