In the August issue of Bowlers Journal there’s a story written about me. (Petraglia remembers Vietnam) The story is well written and much more emotional than I expected it to be. There were also a few mistakes. They’re not really the writer’s fault, sometimes when you write a story and you’re listening to a tape recorder with noise in the backround you may get a word wrong. There were three major mistakes that I want to clear up, so if you end up reading the story you won’t be confused. Mistake one, When I said i was a squad leader the writer assumed I was a staff sergeant. A staff sergeant is an E-6. I was only an E-5 which is a sergeant, or more specifically in my case a spec-5. Mistake two, It says I was on the Dong Ha river. I was on the Dong Nai river. I’m not even sure if there is a Dong Ha river Mistake three, and most important The old man was in a “Sampan” not a sandbag. A “Sampan” is a small Vietnamese boat. We all know what a sandbag is. People that read the story are probably wondering how an old man was floating on a sandbag.
One last thing… In the story it tells of my incident at the airport with anti-war demonstrators. If Vietnam had one good thing it showed that treating the troops badly was a big mistake. You can be anti-war and still be pro troops. People realized that our soldiers are just following orders and their number one job is to protect us, And that’s the way it’s been for the last 30 years….. until now!
At the Democratic National Convention this week, a number of people in the audience turned their backs when the Medal of Honor recipient got up to speak, and started chanting “No more war” as if the Medal of Honor recipient had something to do with the decision of going to war…. It’s starting again, Please don’t let this happen.
I want to publicly thank my son for the beautiful note he put out on facebook. I love you John!!
cento anni’…Johnny Petraglia