Veterans Gather to Honor One Another in Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Celebration

 

Retiring of the flags is performed by veterans during the, Sunday, March 29, 2015, Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Celebration held at the Tulalip Boys & Girls Club. (Tulalip News Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil)

Retiring of the flags is performed by veterans during the, Sunday, March 29, 2015, Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Celebration held at the Tulalip Boys & Girls Club. (Tulalip News Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil)

By Brandi N. Montreuil, Tulalip News

TULALIP – A celebration was held today at the Tulalip Boys & Girls Club to mark the national ‘Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day.’

Due to the unpopularity of the conflict, veterans returning home were often forgotten and abused, suffering years of post stress disorder. In 2011, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed a resolution to provide Vietnam veterans a proper welcome home.  March 30, the day all U.S. troops and support-troops withdrew from Vietnam, was designated a national day of welcome. The resolution authored by North Carolina senator Richard Burr called the resolution, “a day to give our Vietnam veterans a warm, long-overdue welcome home.”

A friendship round dance is performed by attendees to the, Sunday, March 29, 2015, Welcome Home Vietnam Celebration held at the Tulalip Boys & Girls Club. (Tulalip News Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil)

A friendship round dance is performed by attendees to the, Sunday, March 29, 2015, Welcome Home Vietnam Celebration held at the Tulalip Boys & Girls Club. (Tulalip News Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil)

On March 30, 1973, all U.S. troops withdrew from Vietnam under the terms of the Treaty of Paris. More than 58,000 members of the United States Armed Forces had lost their lives while more than 300,000 were wounded during the conflict.

Today veterans in the Tulalip community came together to celebrate all the veterans who returned home and to honor those who lost their lives serving their country.

Veterans of the Tulalip community perform a song for veterans during the, Sunday, March 29, 2015, Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Celebration held at the Tulalip Boys & Girls Club. (Tulalip News Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil)

Veterans of the Tulalip community perform a song for veterans during the, Sunday, March 29, 2015, Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Celebration held at the Tulalip Boys & Girls Club. (Tulalip News Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil)

The celebration was organized by Tulalip veteran Andy James who served in the Marines during the conflict. The event featured a potluck style meal and small pow wow.

Thank you to all those who have served. We honor your sacrifice and welcome you home.

 

Brandi N. Montreuil: 360-913-5402; bmontreuil@tulalipnews.com

Tulalip marks first Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day with potluck celebration

 

Veterans from all military branches supported each other during the first Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans celebration, organized by Tulalip veteran marine Andy James. Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil, Tulalip News

Veterans from all military branches supported each other during the first Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans celebration, organized by Tulalip veteran marine Andy James.
Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil, Tulalip News

by Brandi N. Montreuil, Tulalip News

TULALIP – U.S. Vietnam veterans have been home for more than 40 years, but due to anti-war sentiment with the American public, returning soldiers quietly rejoined their communities without receiving a national welcome home.

In 2011, the U.S. Senate, decided to change this. The Senate unanimously passed a resolution to provide Vietnam veterans a chance to be properly welcomed home by designating March 30, Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day. The designated day marks the final withdrawal of all combat and combat-support troops from Vietnam on March 29, 1973.

Welcome-Home-Vietnam-Vets-Celebration

Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil, Tulalip News

Although veteran organizations across the nation have been celebrating the day since its passing, only three states, California, Oregon, and Washington, have recognized the day officially, including flying the POW/MIA flag in addition to the U.S. flag and state flags on all government buildings.

Last year Governor Jay Inslee deemed March 30 for Washington State after Rep. Norm Jackson (Yakima) (R) introduced 2013 House Bill 1319 on January 23, 2013.  The bill passed 97 to 0 in the House and again passed 48 to 0 in the Senate and was signed by Gov. Inslee on March 29, 2013.

This year, Tulalip hosted their first annual Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans celebration in honor of their fellow veterans. Attendees included tribal and non-tribal veterans who gathered at the Tulalip Boys & Girls Club to mark the official homecoming.

Tulalip veteran Andy Jones, pictured in cedar hat, served during the Vietnam Conflict with the Marines, organized the celebration. Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil, Tulalip News

Tulalip veteran Andy James, pictured in cedar hat, served during the Vietnam Conflict with the Marines, organized the celebration.
Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil, Tulalip News

Tulalip veteran and tribal member Andy James, who served with the Marines during the Vietnam conflict, organized the event.

“I am extremely thankful and grateful for my elders, particularly the ones who put on uniforms in defense of this country before I did. We have one here today that did,” said James, referring to Tulalip tribal member and Korean War veteran Ray Moses (Te-at-mus).

“I wanted to do something to mark this day, so I organized a potluck,” continued James. “I am thankful for every veteran, and we realize it was all for the cause.  We did what we had to to defend our country, and I am glad to celebrate this day and welcome home my fellow veterans.”

 

Brandi N. Montreuil: 360-9135402; bmontreuil@tulaliptribes-nsn.gov

 

Traditional Southern Grass dancer Jeff Brown danced for visiting veterans during the Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day.Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil, Tulalip News

Traditional Southern Grass dancer Jeff Brown danced for visiting veterans during the Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day.
Photo/ Brandi N. Montreuil, Tulalip News