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2017-11-02

The B-17

Letters to the Editor

Dear Bev (editor),
I just wanted to tell you that I really enjoyed reading the article you wrote in this week’s Courier about the B-17. It brought back many memories for me. I didn’t know that Dennis served in Vietnam. My late husband, John, also served in Vietnam and was an officer with the Air Force. He flew combat missions in the F-100.
I had the opportunity to visit South Vietnam several years ago when my husband was still alive. We took a cruise to China, which included several other countries including Vietnam. We traveled in a tour bus from the South Vietnam coast to Saigon, which is now known as Ho Chi Minh city.
My husband made sure that I got to see and visit the war room. This War Room was located in the basement of a building near the city center of Saigon. It wasn’t what I expected. It was a small building with concrete floors and walls, narrow hallways and not much light or furniture. Very spooky for me.
Several years after the war ended and with the rebuilding of the cities, towns, and coastline, South Vietnam had become very westernized. Many of the new houses are very modern, like you would see in the United States.
South Vietnam is a small country and most of the land is used for farming, so the houses are built close together. Many Vietnam people who live in these houses along the highways have businesses; the business is located on the lower level and they live on the top level.
The Saigon East Coast has become a big vacation and tourist area. The beaches are very clean and beautiful with beautiful and modern hotels.
I was amazed to see how many trucks were in South Vietnam, and farmers using tractors. When we were in China, I didn’t see many trucks, and did not see one tractor while touring the countryside and farms. The Chinese farmers working in the fields still used the old, hand farming methods.

Elenora Dugosh Goodley

Editor’s note: Thank you Elenora, for sharing this fascinating memory about visiting South Vietnam.