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Discussion Starter #1
Hello:
I drove to O'Hare airport this morning to pick up my son and daughter in law. While there I saw something that brought tears to my eyes and brought back a flood of memories.

A young man in his Army fatigues just arrived home from Afghanistan and his wife and small children, brother, and parents were their to greet him.

It was very easy to see the release of their stress knowing that he made it home in one piece. People that were waiting for others started clapping for them. It was a very special moment.

When I finally arrived home from the Army my family made me feel like John Wayne returning from Iwo Jima. Not deserved, but something I will always remember.

Do you recall the time you finally came home from the service? I slept for almost 24 hours minus bathroom breaks.
Steve Balistreri
Wauwatosa Wisconsin
 

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I came home from the Army in 1967. We had to travel in Class A uniform: green jacket and trousers pants, tan shirt, black tie. I heard that those returning were not being greeted with cheers and applause, so I put everything I could on that jacket in hopes that I might look ferocious and thereby not experience the indignities some service people did. I traveled from Washington State to Connecticut with no problem or applause.
 

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I remember my cousin coming home from Nam in the late 60's. The whole family was there.
 

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Nope, no real greetings, no fanfare....but then again the old Valley Forge Hospital was not a place that encouraged visitors.

Crazy times....

Curt
 

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Buddy of mine and some of the guys he was with in Viet Nam came back in 68 and were spit on and had garbage thrown on them. They fought the urge to do something about it and just kept walking away.

To this day he says he would like to meet up with some to those people one on one.
 

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Nobody was waiting for me. I walked out of the gate, got in my truck and drove home. I took 60 days terminal leave. On the exact date I became a civilian, I was in my second month of college.
 

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When I got back to the states in 1965, I shipped my duffel bag on home via Railway Express (remember them) and caught a flight to the nearest airport near my parents home (about 60 miles away) and started hitching for a ride. Like JoeP above I had my class A's on. I walked about 5 miles before two guys stopped and said they would give me a ride about twenty miles up the road. Well, they were both drinking beer and of course gave me one. Long story short they were about half lit, when we started and got drunker as we went. They ended up giving me a ride the whole way. They were the only people that went out of their way to show any kindness or appreciation, not that I expected any. Different times back then. My folks knew I was coming home, but not exactly when. Sure surprised them, when I showed up at the door. Like Steve, I believe I slept for two days. Old room and bed was a welcome sight. I make it a point to thank any service men/women I see for their service. I want them to know they are appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Walking through O'Hare airport when I was returning home we had encountered at that time a group of bald headed freaks in capes and leotards.

There were four of us walking through the airport and they started calling us names and getting in our face. One of the guys played for a short time in the NFL and picked up one sob by the neck and gently put him down on the ground. They ran to a cop and he said he did not see anything.

Some of you know how we felt after going through that crap and coming home to a bunch of freaks. It was difficult to just keep on walking listening to their bs, without hurting them.
Steve
 

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Which time? I went to SEA 5 times, 4 179 day TDY's ( the USAF thought that 179 days doesn't count as any time but 180 days was counted as your year)and the last time I was PCSed to Korat Thailand

The only time any family was there was when I got out for good and I was coming home from Korea, my Mom and Dad met me in Omaha

But I will say that the USAF was pretty good I guess, they would give me two weeks to out and in process in the states, and I could in/out process in about 4 hours so I would drive home from Ellsworth AFB S Dak, until the last time, my section chief got chewed out because some of the top cheese wanted to see me because I was awarded a DFC, for something I did the first time I went over there, but didn't get the DFC awarded to me until I was DROSed

They gave it to me in Offutt, but I didn't go to the ceremony but my Mom and Dad did and brought it home to me, I was BFD, with that and $.10 I could buy a cup of coffee

The first time I came back I ended up going through San Fransisco International or what ever they called it and there were a bunch of hippie's talking their $hit, II was ordered to ignore it, and I did but it still torques my a$$
 
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Discussion Starter #10
Catpower:
We had a Hippie that got drafted and he was in my platoon. He came to basic training with hair down to his a--. The drill sergeants had a field day with him.

By the end of basic training he ended up being a pretty good guy. Every time I'd ask him something he'd give me the peace sign??? He went to Vietnam and was a good soldier.

At one airport they were calling any one in uniform baby killers and blaming us for Kent state.

It was a weird time in our history.
Steve
 
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