The intent of this book is first, to provide insights into the Vietnam war and second, to express the effects of that war on both the veteran and society. Serving in a war zone necessarily affects the psyche, sometimes producing symptoms of mental illness. It also affects the veteran morally, emotionally and, too often, physically. The stories are meant to elucidate the psychological and other effects that war inflicts. Often, an affected veteran may not realize psychiatric symptoms or their cause. Veterans who read this work will recall their military service and also gain some insight into symptoms that they may have experienced, or continue to experience, as a result of their service.
The stories are a mix of fact and fiction. Some stories are based on the author’s experience in Vietnam, and on his experience in representing disabled veterans and others with claims for disability benefits. Some stories, or parts of stories, are based on reports of fellow soldiers or on impressions of what likely occurred - - the product of fact and the author’s imagination.
The poems were written during time served in Vietnam. They reflect thoughts that most GIs had at one time or another.
Hopefully, this book will help veterans cope with illnesses and disabilities that were occasioned by their time in the military. It is hoped that society will learn how to relate with courtesy and respect to those who now serve or have served our nation in its various wars.