Today as I go in to a store wearing my Vietnam Cap, people will come up to me and say “Thank you for your service.” But I remember when this was not the fashion thing to do.
I can remember the first time someone ever said those simple words to me, “Thank you for your service.” My wife and I were going into a Home Depot and a young man walked up to me as I was getting out of my car and asked, “Are those your purple heart car tags?” I said yes and He thank me for my service. I turned to my wife and said that is the first time anyone had ever thanked me. This happen thirty years after I had left the Army and Vietnam.
No one welcome me home after the war and no one wanted to hear anything about the Vietnam War. It was an unpopular war and everyone wanted to forget it ever happened.
But to many of us who were there, it was a war that will never leave our mind and thoughts. All the PTSD treatments and group meeting could not erase the nightmares each live with.
This is why this project; Vietnam Fallen Warriors Monument is needed. Not just for those who gave all but for those who still fight each day to be heard. Each veteran has a story that is crying for an audience that is willing to listen. This monument has 530 stories that need to be heard of the young service men who died for their country.
I enlisted in the Army, 1967 after high school. I was discharged from the Army in 1970 marking three years that would define me for the rest of my life. Took basic training at Fort Ord, California. From there I when to Fort Gordon, Georgia for AIT. Then to Fort Benning for jump school. Then to the friendly country of Vietnam. There I was assigned to the 3rd Brigade, 82nd Airborne and joined my unit, A Company, 1/ 505 Infantry.
Davis Ramos serves on the board for the Vietnam Fallen Warrior Monument as the finance officer and on the board for the Vietnam Combat Veterans Association.