Post-traumatic stress disorder was not recognized as a psychiatric disorder until 1980, years after many Vietnam veteran had returned home. St Paul veteran Ron Kane believes his PTSD may be the result of the split second decisions he had to make in the field that had fatal consequences for men he led.
Minnesota is home to a large number of Lao and Hmong warriors. In their homeland, they were recruited and trained by the CIA as part of its secret war and resettled in Minnesota after the war. Despite being credited with aiding the US, they are still pushing for recognition and veterans benefits
Some 300,000 American servicemen were injured in Southeast Asia. Army veteran Truedell Guerue is one of them, hospitalized for more than a year after suffering maiming injuries. Army nurse Valerie Buchan was on duty to treat the wounded and recalls the special hell that burn victims endured.
Many who fought in Vietnam were the offspring of the soldiers who fought in previous wars and enjoyed the wholehearted backing of the American public. Three Vietnam vets contrast their experiences with that of their fathers.
After his service in Vietnam ended, Army veteran Doug Bekke became the longtime curator of the Minnesota Military Museum at Camp Ripley. In that position, he interviewed scores of soldiers from every war and that has given him perspective on the meaning of military service
Every year, Minnesota veterans who fought in every conflict gather at the State Capitol to lobby state lawmakers and listen to their agenda for legislation that will impact services for the men and women who served. They found a sympathetic ear in State Senator Jerry Relph, a former Marine first lieutenant who served in Vietnam
For Trudell Guerue, a Lakota who grew up on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota, military service is part of a rich cultural tradition. Native people had the highest per capita record of service in Vietnam of any ethnic group. Guerue explains how his community supported him when he returned to the reservation after being wounded in Vietnam