According tonationalvietnamveteransfoundation.org, it is estimated that less than 850,000 Vietnam veterans remain alive today. That means of the 2,709,918 Americans who served in Vietnam, only about a third are still with us, and the conflict officially ended less than 40 years ago.
Those who remember that era know how much the war divided the nation, and the soldiers who returned home were met with scorn as much as they were praise. The welcome home ceremonies were relatively few in number, and these brave men and women were left to wonder if their service amounted to anything meaningful.
Because of a variety of factors, exposure to Agent Orange among them, it is estimated that 390 Vietnam vets are dying daily. Far too many of them go to their graves still wondering if their sacrifice made a difference.
We should all do something to erase that doubt by reaching out to a Vietnam veteran and simply saying “thanks” before it’s too late.