Vietnam Veterans Meet in Dubuque for the First Time in 50 Years

By Katie Wiedemann, KCRG-TV9

DUBUQUE, Iowa — Hailing from across the country, members of the United States Army’s 765th Security Platoon who served in the Vietnam War, were together for a reunion in Dubuque. It was the first time many have seen each other since they left Vietnam.

The group says it seems the Army’s records of their battalion somehow disappeared. That’s why many of them never expected to reunite. Until they discovered they were all looking for each other.

Even though there’s no record of their service, the veterans have the photos to prove it.

George Peterson of Alexandria, VA said, “We don’t show up in any of the records. There’s no table of organization for us. “

It was an emotional reunion for Moriah Rhaime of Galena, IL. She met people she’d only known through her father’s stories and pictures.

Rhaime said, “3 days before my dad died he wanted to get back in touch with his unit members.”

Through a quick Google search, Rhaime discovered phone numbers on a website dedicated to the long lost battalion. Her father got to chat with his old friends and then peacefully passed away.

“Because I am a Dessert Storm Veteran, they decided to adopt me as one of their own. So they are kind of like surrogate dads to me in a way. “ Rhaime said.

The Veterans are now dads, historians and retirees. But when they are in the same room, suddenly they are 19 again.

They spent the morning, chuckling about their shameless shenanigans and remembering the evils of war. That’s something they say they can’t quite explain to someone who wasn’t there.

Art Simmons said, “They’d say, you don’t get close to somebody in war, because they might not be here tomorrow.”

But so many of them are still here, looking for answers. Sifting through memories.

“I want them to find closure. I want them to get information about their unit that’s not available. I just want them to have peace,” said Rhaime.

l Comments: (563) 583-9999; katie.wiedemann@kcrg.com

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