Veterans recognized for Vietnam Veterans Day - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Veterans recognized for Vietnam Veterans Day

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Some area veterans gathered Saturday for Vietnam Veterans Day, which marks the anniversary of when the last U.S. troops left Vietnam.

It was only two years ago that the President proclaimed March 29 as Vietnam Veterans Day. The Ladies Auxillary of the Greater Plover Area and the Plover Veterans of Foreign Affairs members knew this year they wanted to celebrate.

"We were going to have something to give recognition to those who probably didn't get recognition when they did get home," said Roberta Dunlap, an event coordinator.

The groups hosted a dinner and gave out prizes to veterans as a way to thank them for their service. Dozens of veterans shared stories with one another, reflected on their years in the service, but also honored those who never came home.

To Vietnam veteran Scott Halverson, it was a homecoming long overdue.

"We haven't had this for a long time," said Halverson. "It's about time. It's a very enjoyable time to be together with these people and finally have some fun."

For many Vietnam veterans, there wasn't a big parade waiting for them when they returned home.

"We just melded into society basically, I guess this is the return on investment you might say," said Allyn Dunlap, a Vietnam veteran.

Veterans say they hope Vietnam Veterans Day will help others remember their sacrifices.

"We were kids ourselves and we had to grow up pretty fast," said Dunlap.

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