The People of Vietnam
The following sequence of photos are from collections of  fellow veterans. They were taken between Aug. 1966 and Aug. 1967. We have tried to selected photos that were representative of the everyday life of the Vietnamese people. For the most part their everyday life and surroundings are today,  the same as they were in 1967. What is not seen here is the "Countryside at War," with themselves ..... and those of us who tried to help. The evidence of that effort is located on the Memorial Pages connected to this Web Site. These photos will hopefully give a clearer view of the other side of the Vienamese people, showing that not all Vietnamese were at war with those of us who tried to help. An old Vietnamese farmer said to me once that, "For a thousand years people have been coming into my country for war, we don't want you here as we didn't want the others, but you are the best for me ......... at this time."
A Vietnamese family tending their field of Tapioca in Tay Ninh Province 1967
A Vietnamese farmer and daughter Tay Ninh Province 1967. Cattle carts were the method of transportation and work truck for a farmer. It was also his wealth.
The kids, they were always there. Everywhere you went, they were there. The Innocent of all Wars, the kids .... They were always there wanting to help with whatever you were doing, but always getting in the way, or begging for  cigarettes, their favorite past time. They always had something to sell, whether you wanted something or not. You never saw teenagers or 20 year olds. Those men and boys were either drafted into the Vietnamese Army, kidnaped to serve the Communist, or went away on their own to serve  the Vietcong Communist Guerrillas to rid their land of Foreign Soldiers.
" The Kids of Tay Ninh, South Vietnam, 1967 "
Typical Vietnamese farmer's home 1967
Anywhere there were roads in Vietnam, there were shops, especially in the area of the larger cities
Tay Ninh City 1966
Tay Ninh City 1966
Rice fields in Tay Ninh 1966. It was hard to believe sometimes that a war was going on in such a beautiful country
In sharp contrast to the simple huts of the Vietnamese farmer thoughtout the country, there were French built Villas, a reminder left over from the "French Colonial Days" when the French ruled Vietnam and it's resources. It was these contrasts of rich and poor that led to the influence of the Communist form of government in South East Asia.
When the Communist Guerrillas blewup the bridges the army rebuilt them with military ones. Waterways were a prime transportation route of the Vietnamese people. This particular one was located out side of Chu Chi, northwest of Saigon
A busy water route outside Chu Lai in the Northern part of South Vietnam 1967
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Nui Ba Den or Black Virgin Mountain, located in Tay Ninh Province, South Vietnam. This mountain rises 3200' from the surrounding flat land. It was named after a mythical widow who waits for her soldier's return.
Home of the old farmer who spoke to me of the thousand years war. His grand daughter and great grandson
Nui Ba Den 1967, A returning Soldier in 1997 found that the Vietnamese had constructed a Tramway to the top of the Mountain and built a 4 star hotel at the City of Tay Ninh for the tourist trade
Tay Ninh City street  shops 1966
Downtown Saigon 1966
Downtown Saigon 1966
The Vietnamese Imperial Palace Saigon 1966. In 1975 the North Vietnamese drove a Soviet T- 34 tank through the front gate and declared Vietnam a United Republic. By most estimates, 3 1/2 million Vietnamese died to unite the two countries as a Communist Goverment.
In 1966 and 67 this family, the mother on the right, and her 4 daughters  could be seen selling bottles of French Coca- Cola and fruit along the roadside leading into our basecamp. Over the months we got to know them well. I remember one day they were all gathered around looking at something with great enthusiasm, it was an American "Life" Magazine. They were looking at the pictures in the advertisements. With broken English and all at the same time they were asking us if this was really America. We said yes. The mother then asked us to take her daughters home to America with us when we left, and began to cry.... I choose to believe she was sincere. What she was willing to sacrifice for her kids has always stayed with me even to this day........I have thought of them often through the years.
" The Kids of Tay Ninh, South Vietnam, 1966 "
Sam Lococo and friend Chu Lai 1967
The American soldiers called these guys the "Beach Patrol" in Chu Lai 1967
Brothers, Chu Lai 1967
Caukhol Rubber Plantation in Tay Ninh Province 1967
Nui Ba Den Mountain Tay Ninh 1967
Nui Ba Den Mountain Tay Ninh 1967
Tay Ninh City street  shops 1966