Vietnam Vet Talks Sacrifice During Valley Veterans Day Program
VALLEY- On Friday the City of Valley, along with American Legion Post 67 hosted their annual Veterans Day Program from the Crowder Room inside the Valley Community Center. The program which is normally held outside at Veterans Memorial Park in Langdale had to be moved due to rainy weather.
American Legion Post 67 Post Commander Lanny Bledsoe, a former Korean War Veteran opened up the program by highlighting the significance of Veterans Day which takes place on the eleventh hour on the eleventh day of the eleventh month.
Bledsoe thanked all Veterans who served and thanked them for their service.
Keynote speaker Ed Hogg from Atlanta, who served as a medic during the Vietnam War spoke on his service, the combat he saw, the horror he experienced, and the lack of gratitude he and other Vietnam vets received when they came back home.
Hogg served in the combat area of the Cambodian border at the height of the war and said it was the worst time of his life. He would later suffer from PTSD which led to a failed marriage, and at one point he contemplated suicide.
“When we got back, there were no parades, no bands playing, and no one there to slap you on the back and say ‘Welcome home," said Hogg.
More than 2.7 million U.S. men and women were in Vietnam, “More than 60 percent of that number faced hostile action. Almost 1,000 men were killed on their first day of combat in Vietnam. A total of 1,224 Americans remain missing in action. Today over 9,000 Vietnam veterans have committed suicide.
Hogg, who is active in Vietnam veterans organizations is 60 percent disabled today due to agent orange.
Valley Mayor Leonard Riley thanked all the Veterans and promised to always support the Veterans in the City of Valley.
The program concluded with the playing of Taps by Gary Harris.