American Experience
Firsthand Accounts Firsthand Accounts
Jean Ponder AllenKeith HackettMike AriasDiane Sikorski KramerJane BrotmanJim RowenJack CipperlyPaul SoglinJoe CostelloClark Welch
BeforeOctober 1967AftermathReflections

Clark Welch (1:02) video | transcript

Going to Vietnam was not a decision that I made with my wife that might be life or death, it was, "Of course I'm going to go to Vietnam. I'm going to go to Vietnam. I'm going to liberate the oppressed. It's what I've trained for all my adult life. It's why I was in the Boy Scouts -- trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, all of that stuff. Of course, I'll go to Vietnam. Vietnam is an oppressed people that needs liberating."

It would be inconvenient for my young family. My wife [was] very, very capable of taking care of two little boys, my boys. I've always felt awful that I didn't spend my life, every minute with my boys. My boys reassure me now that, "Dad, you know, you were a good dad." I'm very good friends with my sons, they are good kids. But the decision to leave them for a year was not hard to make. It was very easy. My wife was for it.

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