In the late spring of 1995, two of us were able to make another trip to DC to “The Wall”. This time we were gong to see our old friends, but had the expressed interest in visiting the nearby Viet Nam Women's Memorial.
For too long, some of the most valuable military personnel in that campaign had been mostly ignored.
On more than one occasion for each of us, my friend, Barry, and I had both been the beneficiary of 'the best care anywhere' promise of these dedicated Angels of Mercy.
After spending time with the troops at "The Wall" and offering our salutes, we moved to the Women's Memorial.
We weren't really ready for our reactions.
Standing as close as we could without desecrating the memorial, we found
ourselves having to lean against each other for support. Emotions can sneak up on you and the dam can burst at
As we later sat and talked, Barry asked what had happened to me that struck such a chord.
I explained that I had the same type of reaction whenever I watched the opening sequence of the TV show "China Beach".
There is s brief shot of Dana Delaney as McMurphy crying behind a surgical mask.
I had been on a gurney below a nurse with eyes just like Delaney's character. Suffering from a mostly superficial, yet heavily bleeding multiple laceration head wound, I was overmedicated to the point that I could not talk.
Her words still haunt me .
"YOU WILL NOT DIE ! I REFUSE TO LOSE ANOTHER SOLDIER TODAY ! STAY WITH ME !"
Apparently...I had been one patient too many for her that day.
I was unconscious and never knew how she made it.
I wish I could tell her,
"I stayed with you. We made it."
so says Hal...of the Women of War.