Albert (Al) Hayes, Jr., Vietnam Veteran

My name is Albert Hayes. I was a staff sergeant in the Army. In 1969, I was in Vietnam with the 1st Air Calvary. We went out on helicopters and I’ll never forget the day in June of 1969. We got ambushed and most of my squad got wiped out. I got shot with a hole through my canteen and I’m very emotional right now because I’m still alive and they’re dead. I’m headed down to see the wall and I’m hoping I can set up pretty good once I get to it and see my buddies’ names on the wall.

How can we beat swords into plowshares?

I was drafted, like I said, to go in the military. I would do it all for my country again, but I hope if I ever have to go to war again or if anybody has to go to war, it’s because we’re defending the United States of America and not sticking our nose in other people’s business.

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