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Vietnam Veterans

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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 8, 2000
Accolades to the Orange County Vietnam veterans group for belatedly offering associate membership to former South Vietnamese soldiers who also risked their lives alongside their American allies (Jan. 30). Not to look a gift horse in the mouth, but I'm puzzled as to why it took so excruciatingly long. MONROE LEUNG Monterey Park
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NATIONAL
March 18, 2014 | By Richard Simon
WASHINGTON - It took decades, congressional legislation and a review of thousands of war records, but two dozen veterans of World War II, Korea and Vietnam received the Medal of Honor on Tuesday from President Obama at an emotional White House ceremony. "As one family member has said, this is long overdue," Obama told the single largest group of Medal of Honor recipients since 1945. The presentation came after Congress in a 2002 defense bill ordered a review of thousands of war records to determine whether Latino and Jewish veterans were denied the nation's highest military decoration because of discrimination.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 11, 2013 | By Alan Zarembo, Los Angeles Times
Vietnam veteran John Otte did his best to forget the war. He got married, raised two sons and made a career working at credit unions. But as Otte neared retirement, memories of combat flooded back. Starting in 2005, he filed a series of claims with Veterans Affairs for disability compensation, contending that many of his health problems stemmed from the war. The VA agreed, and now the 65-year-old with two Purple Hearts receives $1,900 a month for post-traumatic stress disorder and diabetes - and for having shrapnel scars on his arms.
NATIONAL
February 21, 2014 | By David S. Cloud
WASHINGTON - President Obama will seek to right a historical wrong next month when he awards two dozen veterans of World War II, Korea and Vietnam - including 17 Latinos - the Medal of Honor after a lengthy Pentagon review into racial and ethnic discrimination in the awarding of the nation's commendation for combat valor. Obama will present the medals to three Vietnam War veterans, and to family members of the 21 veterans who are receiving it posthumously, the White House said late Friday.
NEWS
July 21, 1991 | Associated Press
Thousands of spectators cheered as Gulf War troops joined by Vietnam veterans marched through the downtown area Saturday in a ticker-tape parade. About 4,000 troops in desert camouflage were joined by marching bands, tanks and color guards from Ft. Hood and Ft. Bliss.
NEWS
March 6, 1986 | ROBERT STEINBROOK, Times Medical Writer
Vietnam veterans have an increased risk of premature death, particularly from suicide and motor vehicle accidents, compared to men who did not serve in the military, according to a study of the Selective Service lottery of the early 1970s. Compared to non-veterans, Vietnam veterans may be 86% more likely to die from suicide and 53% more likely to die from motor vehicle accidents, physicians at the UC Medical Center in San Francisco reported.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 28, 1991 | LINDA BURSTYN, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
A 300-foot-long replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial will make a stop in Ventura County next month, courtesy of the Vietnam Veterans of Ventura County. "It's equal to the experience of going back to Washington, D.C., and seeing the real wall," said Gary Parker, first vice president of the Ventura veterans group. "People come and spend hours at the wall, remembering and trying to bring about some healing. It can be a very good experience. It can be very traumatic, very moving."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 2, 1991 | JOHN PENNER
While patriotic parades are being held across the nation to welcome troops home from the Gulf War, some local Vietnam veterans are re-forming a support group to unite both groups of soldiers in sharing their traumatic memories of war. Vietnam Veterans Reunited plans to begin meeting semimonthly, beginning this evening. The group, which is seeking new members, will meet at 7:30 p.m. on the first and third Thursdays of each month at the Elks Club, 7711 Talbert Ave. in Huntington Beach.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 21, 1985 | GLENN BURKINS, Times Staff Writer
Buddy Love served two tours of duty in Vietnam, he says, before military doctors decided he was schizophrenic and discharged him from the Marines in 1971--without a disability pension. Today he is broke, unemployed and living at The Landing Zone, a downtown San Diego shelter for homeless Vietnam veterans. But he is better off now than he was a year ago, when he lived in the woods of Balboa Park.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 29, 1991 | DAVID CIAFFARDINI
An Ojai Valley man, inspired by a Vietnam veterans memorial, has begun a project to help the homeless. Mike Eggleston is seeking volunteers to help Operation Riverbottom, a plan to gather food and warm clothing for needy people living in the Ventura River bed and in campgrounds in the Ojai Valley.
OPINION
September 5, 2013 | By the Times Editorial Board
A federal judge made the right decision when he ruled last week that the Department of Veterans Affairs had misused its West Los Angeles campus by leasing land to the private Brentwood School, a hotel laundry service, UCLA (for the use of Jackie Robinson Stadium by the UCLA baseball team) and a soccer club, among other entities. The VA is authorized by Congress to enter into agreements to share land or facilities with organizations that provide healthcare for veterans. The VA had argued that it used the revenue generated by leasing land to help fund its programs, but District Judge S. James Otero voided nine active lease agreements, covering about 20% of the VA's 387-acre campus, ruling that they did not directly involve healthcare.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 11, 2013 | By Alan Zarembo, Los Angeles Times
Vietnam veteran John Otte did his best to forget the war. He got married, raised two sons and made a career working at credit unions. But as Otte neared retirement, memories of combat flooded back. Starting in 2005, he filed a series of claims with Veterans Affairs for disability compensation, contending that many of his health problems stemmed from the war. The VA agreed, and now the 65-year-old with two Purple Hearts receives $1,900 a month for post-traumatic stress disorder and diabetes - and for having shrapnel scars on his arms.
OPINION
May 8, 2013
Re "Reward for combat duty: loss of jobs," May 6 I'm glad The Times is naming names. The companies that failed to protect the jobs of those serving the country need public shaming so we'll know which companies not to patronize. The excuse that the law is misunderstood is the usual corporate shuck and jive. And the fact that the departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs have even one case against them is a travesty. I thought we learned our lessons when we so badly mistreated the Vietnam veterans.
NATIONAL
February 26, 2013 | By Michael A. Memoli, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - Chuck Hagel, who won two Purple Hearts in the Vietnam War, survived the turbulent battle over his nomination to lead the Pentagon, where he will confront two new challenges: potentially dramatic budget cuts and tensions with congressional critics. The Senate voted largely along party lines Tuesday to confirm Hagel as the nation's 24th secretary of Defense, making the former Republican senator from Nebraska the first Vietnam veteran in the post. The 58-41 vote marked the lowest level of support for any successful Cabinet nominee since 2007, when Michael B. Mukasey won 53 votes as George W. Bush's third attorney general.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 5, 2012 | Los Angeles Times staff and wire services
Frank Lopez Sr., a decorated Marine whose nightmares from the Vietnam War led him to launch a drive for a memorial honoring fellow San Jose servicemen who gave their lives in the conflict, died Nov. 24 of illnesses stemming from exposure to Agent Orange, the toxic battlefield herbicide. He was 64.His son, Frank, confirmed the death. The polished black granite memorial, modeled after the popular Vietnam War monument in Washington, D.C., is under construction at a downtown San Jose park.
NEWS
May 30, 2012 | By Michael McGough
President Obama has sided with those who argue that returning Vietnam veterans were spat on by ungrateful opponents of that long-ago war. In a Memorial Day address at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, the president didn't literally endorse the spitting scenario, but he gave it figurative support. Addressing Vietnam vets, he said: "You were often blamed for a war you didn't start, when you should have been commended for serving your country with valor.  You were sometimes blamed for misdeeds of a few, when the honorable service of the many should have been praised.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 10, 1985 | JAMES QUINN, Times Staff Writer
The most remarkable Vietnam War experience Paul Davis had was sitting next to the same soldier on a military flight to Vietnam and, a year later, on the way back to the United States. The coincidence, which Davis said "just never happens because there were so many men involved and the rotations and assignments were all different," led to an intense kinship between the two.
OPINION
January 18, 2012 | By Dave Zirin
Muhammad Ali turned 70 on Tuesday, and the three-time heavyweight champion who doubled as the most famous draft resistor in U.S. history remains larger than life in the American mind, despite being ravaged by Parkinson's disease. Two years ago, on a visit to Louisville, Ky., I was reminded why. In a cab on the way to the Muhammad Ali Center downtown, I saw that my driver had a Vietnam Veterans of America patch on display by his license. I asked him about his experience in Southeast Asia, and he started talking a mile a minute about his time "in country," how his "happiest days" were being a sniper in Vietnam.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 18, 2011 | By Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times
Late in Karl Marlantes' memoir-philosophical treatise "What It Is Like to Go to War," a follow-up to his acclaimed Vietnam novel "Matterhorn," the author makes a plea for how America should treat its returning veterans from current and future wars. "There should be parades, but they should be solemn processionals, rifles upside down, symbol of the sword sheathed once again," he writes. "They should be conducted with all the dignity of a military funeral, mourning for those lost on both sides, giving thanks for those returned.
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