Atonement -the Story Behind The Poem
14 January, 2007
author: Rebecca Ditch-Hammack (aka Dreamer)
Originally Written Oct 23, 2000
|I talked to Shiloh in length about his poem and I thought it was important to share the story of it with the readers.. As it is a bit graphic and there is a lot to it I thought it would be better to share it as separate page --Dreamer|
My poem is about a vietnam vet's suicide at The Wall in d.c. it happened the morning of the dedication -
It was really sad, because the park service didn't want to let anyone know it happened, so they brought a parks commission station wagon up, one used to transport stuff, and I saw them putting the guy into the back, so as not to attract too much attention; even at 4am, there were a lot of people around the memorial. They then put up the fences and backed everyone out until the end of the parade.
They had another wagon there, with replacement tiles, and they were taking up
the bloody tiles and putting new ones down, putting down new turf in place of the bloody
turf. they had a bunch of park rangers around, to keep people away and keep them from
seeing it. they have since replaced the entire walkway with a more
"vietnam vets account for over 85 thousand unexplained single car and unattended deaths all across the country. trees, bridge abutments, cliffs, pills, the ocean, a bullet. and all of them alone. but the end result is always the same - peace at last. "
|shiloh (220.127.116.11) -- Friday, November 9 2007, 11:57 pm|
talked to a retired D.C. cop a while back, and he said he was on horseback the day we had the parade down constitution avenue, and he and the cops with him were amazed that we vets sort of policed our own, and didn't cause any problems of any kind, other than the occasional drunk, but that the guys with the drunk would take charge of him and take him back to the hotel. it impressed him that we didn't go nuts like it was thought that we might, what with half a million vietnam vets and family in town... got to talking with him about the suicide, and he said likely the body was removed to another part of town and then "officially" found. that way it wouldn't have affected the celebration at The Wall. hell of a thing, huh?
|Dreamer (18.104.22.168) -- Monday, May 31 2010, 04:56 pm|
I still feel so honored that you shared this story with me.
I, for one, will never forget
|shiloh (22.214.171.124) -- Monday, May 31 2010, 05:06 pm|
the vet who made his statement, i feel, was dishonnored by the way they "took care of the problem." no mention in the papers, nothing officially said or done, and he was eventually listed as a suicide at a different location than where he chose to die. but i guess that goes along with war... soldiers die in locations and at times other than they would choose... so maybe his path did continue to it's proper end. it just seemed so wrong at the time, and still does.
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