A significant day today for all Australian Vietnam Veterans. A day originally put aside for the anniversary of the battle of Long Tan 18th August 1966 but now a day to remember all those Australians who paid the ultimate sacrifice during the Vietnam war.
After meeting my former enemy on the Long Ride Home, I believe it should be considered a day to forgive those whom we fought against so long ago.
In recent times the Vietnamese government and local villagers who lost family during the battle have been kind enough to allow an Australian memorial to be erected (The Long Tan Cross) at the original battle site. Such a gesture is commendable, in that the Vietnamese themselves lost many soldiers in the battle and there is nothing erected there in memory of their own losses at Long Tan.
I believe that the 18th August, Vietnam Veterans Day, should be remembered for many reasons. It is 50 years to almost the day since I marched out of recruit training and prepared to meet my enemy on his own soil.
For me, the 18th August is now day to reconcile, to forgive and put aside the bad memories of the past which is all part of the healing process.
Truck Sams - Vietnam Veterans Day 2017
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