May 25, 2009
A Vietnam Nurse's Story at the Wall
Mary "Edie" McCoy Meeks, ARMY Nurse, speaks at ceremony commemmorating the 25th anniversary of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
1stLieutenant Mary “Edie” McCoy Meeksserved in the Army Nurse Corps.from 1968-1970 and served for oneyear in Vietnam, splitting timebetween the 3rdField Hospital inSaigon and the 71stEvac Hospitalin Pleiku. She is a member of Rolling Thunder, Inc. and often spends her timevisiting with the sick at Veterans’Hospitals. She now works as a clinicalspine specialist in the Hudson Valley of New York.
Wild Thing's comment.........
Two of my aunts were nurses during the Korean war and one during WW11.
As this nurse shares her story we can know too the lives she got to know even for a short time will live within her always.
....Thank you Mark for sending this to me.
3rd Mar.Div. 1st Battalion 9th Marine Regiment
1/9 Marines aka The Walking Dead
Posted by Wild Thing at May 25, 2009 06:10 PM
Awesome lady, thanks Mark and Chrissie. Spent an afternoon with some wonderful heroes, one of whom was a delightful nurse who served at Brooke General Hospital, now Brooke Army Medical Center (BAMC), during WWII. Still sharp in her uniform too. Some 70 combat vets and another 200 patriots at the ceremony, a small group but fantastic people.
Posted by: Jack at May 25, 2009 07:49 PM
What amazes me more than ever before. There are so many people out there that have had the same problems after the war, or after their tour. I keep hearing speakers like this Nurse and the one you sent Jack, and I know their story, felt the same things, loneliness, isolation and depression, for the longest time I thought it was just me. But thanks to Chrissie' site here and everyone here has helped me realize I was never alone at all. I just didn't know where to look. It has been a long rode back Thanks to everyone here.
Posted by: Mark at May 25, 2009 09:23 PM
The master of ceremonies at todays event was a tunnel rat at Cu Chi, 25th Infantry, due to his stature, another served a 6 successive tours as a grunt, a sniper, he left the theater for 5 days in those 6 tours to escort a Warrant Officer home to his final resting place. They all told tales and shared experiences from WWII through the Afghanistan - Iraq War. One question was posed to all the veterans. Are you getting over the war? It was a unanimous no from the Vietnam veterans. Thank God I wasn't called upon to speak, I couldn't have found the words, there were some burly Marines there that declined too. I for damned sure hugged two complete strangers at the waters edge as we laid a wreath in the remembrance of brothers and sisters lost. Theodores World and all here are a psychological catharsis for me and I never saw the things many of you endured, like you Mark, it has been a long road back. Thanks to all of you.
Posted by: Jack at May 25, 2009 09:47 PM
Jack, oh wow thank you for sharing about
the nurse and all what a great day.
Posted by: Wild Thing at May 26, 2009 12:25 AM
Mark,that touches my heart so much.I
wanted a blog that would be a home for
Veterans, a home online, for sharing,
laughing, ranting, tears if that too,
and Veterans being with Veterans. Thank
you for being a wonderful part of this
little home online.
Posted by: Wild Thing at May 26, 2009 12:45 AM
Jack,it means a lot to read about your
day and what happened. When we lived in
Calif. the man that worked for us had
been a tunnel rat. He wanted only to
work outside, he said he even slept
out on his patio most nights, he did not
like to be closed in. He would share and
I would listen. We still keep in touch since
we moved to Florida.
To be there with all those from om WWII
through the Afghanistan and the Iraq War,
oh wow Jack what a special day. I am so
glad you got to go and they got to meet
Thank you so much Jack for being here.
Posted by: Wild Thing at May 26, 2009 12:56 AM
Yes it was special today and rightfully humbling, This would never have happened 4 years ago, I'm still wound tight, we are not alone, thanks to you Chrissie.
Most of us RVN survivors never got any decompression time, zipped from the theater to the hostile city street in under 72 hours, having to learn how to speak, eat and act again in 'polite society' with nobody to share our feelings with, not even close family.
I know a bit about how your tunnel rat friend in California felt Chrissie, I can't imagine crawling into a tight underground hole where everything in there will kill you. It's bad enough to enter above ground abodes. For some of us sleep meant total exhaustion or an alcoholic stupor to get some rest, I never slept sound over there, some of the grunts from the 23 Inf would pull perimeter duty, Sgt. of the guard has it's responsibilities, some of them unpleasant and sleepless, God love 'em, those guys zonked out in the false security of being at base but we were probed every night, they didn't sleep sound out there on patrol but could on their guards rest period. At daybreak it was back to duty as normal. I'm not fond of monkeys or big cats either, just as worrisome as man.
I had 'something' the size of a tall German Shepard walk through my hootch one night with everyone else asleep, not a dog either, it stopped at the foot of my bunk, looked straight at me with yellow eyes in the blackout light, then walked on and out the opposite door, rest assured those damned doors were closed after that, we were in tiger country but this was nothing I could recognize, we were up against open terrain on our north providing our own security, I still have no idea what that creature was but it was wild and totally unafraid of man. It took many years but sometimes I still wake at night, it's ARTY or mortars from Ft. Lewis, vibrations from the explosions that you feel rather than hear, once identified it's blissful sleep again.
Posted by: Jack at May 26, 2009 03:40 AM