REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala -- The Vietnam War has been over for some 42 years. For the millions of Americans who served in Vietnam the war might be in the history books, but in their minds it's definitely their history. "These veterans are telling me things they haven't shared in 30,40,50 years," said Skip Vaughn.
Sharing what the veterans have told him has become Vaughn's passion. He's a long time writer and editor for the Redstone Rocket, which is Redstone Arsenal's newspaper. Since January of 2015, Skip has written a story a week about a Vietnam vet. Men, women, Marines, Army, Air Force, Navy...Vaughn has interviewed more than 130 veterans of the war, so far. "And so once I started writing these articles, I realized how many of these stories there were out there. It's amazing, these men and women who did amazing things during a very difficult time," said Vaughn.
He says the vets had a rough time in Vietnam, and another rough time when they came home. They weren't honored for their service. "They deserve our gratitude and our respect," said Vaughn.
And Vaughn is doing his part to give people a chance to know why these men and women deserve respect. He has taken more than 80 of his articles about the Vietnam veterans and put them together in a new book, "Vietnam Revisited." Vaughn believes readers will get something valuable. "It gives them a true picture of what the war was like, and lets them know these were true heroes, who never received a welcome home. And so the least we can do is listen to their stories," said Vaughn.
He's worried about one thing in particular. The veterans are getting older, many of them are in their 70s. Four who appear in the book, died in the past year. "And that's the sense of urgency I feel. I'm not going to let these stories die. I'm not going to let these stories die," said Vaughn.
"Vietnam Revisited" is available from Amazon Books. The cost is $15.00. Vaughn said if this first book does okay, there will definitely be a sequel.