Navy Captain Jeremiah Denton stepped to the microphone at Clark Air Force Base in the Philippines and spoke for all the POW's on that first plane. He said, "We are honored to have served our country under difficult circumstances."
Yes, difficult indeed. In 1966 it was Captain Denton who first let us know that our POW's were being tortured. While being filmed for propaganda purposes he managed to spell out the word torture in Morse Code by blinking his eyes.
Senator McCain spent over five years as a POW in Vietnam after ejecting from his aircraft when it was hit by enemy fire. In the process he broke a leg and both arms and was knocked unconscious. He landed in a lake and came to and was able to activate his life preserver with his teeth. He was dragged to shore by some Vietnamese. One of them shattered his right shoulder with a rifle butt. He was bayoneted in the abdomen and foot. He was later put in solitary confinement and tortured. You can read about it here.
While this candidate for President/Commander In Chief led a carefree life as a college student our POW's were being tortured. The troops on the ground were men that had been drafted and were mostly from poor or working class families. Very few came from upper class families. You can read about the unfairness of the draft here.
The Vietnam war was an unpopular war that we were never going to win. The draft was terribly unfair. Way too many lives were lost. Many are still missing.
Sadly, men coming back from Vietnam were usually not greeted as heroes. Back then no one said, "Thank you for your service."
I apologize. I was one of those people. It never even occurred to me at that time to thank anyone.
I was brought to tears when I heard Senator McCain disrespected by this particular candidate. It meant that Captain Hubert Walker, Jr. was also being disrespected. It meant all of the Vietnam POW's were being disrespected. I am so sorry. None of you heroes deserved that kind of disrespect.
I know this is long overdue.
To everyone that served during the Vietnam War...