Everything We Had: An Oral History of the Vietnam War by Al Santoli

Buffalo & Erie County Public Library Staff Review by Carol Ann Strahl:
It is difficult to believe that almost a half-century has passed since we became involved in the quagmire called the Vietnam War.  In this remarkable and poignant oral history, we share the memories of 33 soldiers, including Medics, a former POW, a Navy Seal, Riflemen, Interrogation Officers, Demolition Experts, Snipers, Pilots, Nurses, and Squad and Platoon Leaders.   
              
The reader is given a dose of reality— Nam was not a John Wayne give ‘em hell movie; it was much more complex.  The author, Santoli, served in Vietnam and it is his hope that “you will see what we saw, do what we did, feel what we felt.”   
Those of us of a certain age remember Vietnam vividly and how it split America.  This reviewer lost someone in the early days of the conflict.  If you can possibly visit the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, I highly recommend the experience.  It is a moving and sorrowful place.  When you see all the names, your first thought is of all those unfulfilled dreams.    
This book is a good reminder: We should never forget our Veterans.  We are free because of their courage and unselfishness. 
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