The Vietnam War... A Soul Destroyer?
February 27, 2007 6:23am CST
This is a report sent to me by a friend in Arizona. He lost his brother as a result of the Vietnam War... I just wanted to share it with everybody, as I feel that people outside America, don't really understand the effects this war had on the American population... "We had a very unexpected & special visitor show up to see his brothers' Quilt block while we were in Orland Park. Most of time I have a pretty good idea of who we might be seeing or meeting on our trips with The Quilts but this time I was so surprised when Ed Littell introduced himself that I was speechless! It seemed that Ed was just as surprised as we were... Ed lives in Arizona but happened to be at a convention in Chicago on business when he got a message from his sister in law that we were nearby with The Quilts. Well, it turned out that Ed didn't get a lot of business done at the convention because it meant more to spend some time with us & The Quilts over the weekend, reflecting upon the memory of his brother Stephen. Although I've never met any of Stephen Littell's family in person before, I've always had a sense of personal attachment to this particular piece... Stephens' block...mainly because I know a lot of the history & personal story behind it. I've been in contact with Stephen Littell's widow Barb for quite some time now & she has been a very good friend to me since we lost our founder, Jennie LeFevre in 2004. Barb has given me a source of strength & purpose to carry on Jennie's work. As the weekend progressed Ed Littell, Henry & I got to share a lot of hugs along with many tears reflecting upon Stephens' battle with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma caused from his Agent Orange exposure. The surprise of meeting & spending time with Ed was indeed an honor. However, there is one moment that absolutely broke my heart & I have made a promise to myself that I must try to work on a solution in the future... During closing ceremonies on the last night of the event they held a Candlelight Vigil where the family members of Veterans lost during Vietnam proceeded to The Wall with a candle which was left there in recognition of their loved one...as Ed stood beside me that night I could feel his heart breaking as he felt he should be doing the same for his brother. Ed left my side & went to stand inside by the Quilt that his brothers block is on. I know how sacred The Wall is to all of us but I believe in my heart that Ed Littell should have been among those recognizing there loved one that night..... Even though Stephen Littell came home from Vietnam he also died as a direct result of his tour of duty there...." This touched my heart, and affored my tears... so, as a tribute to all those who lost near and dear ones in, or as a result of this war. Indeed any war reaps these results, and it pains me to think about them. Please, the powers that be, let them end!
15 May 07
Oh boy... I hadn't realised the effects of Hiroshima and Nagasaki still persisted. I guess it all gets covered up by the media... and what was it all for? A small step in the strive for World Power... that all the citizens in those two areas should suffer a lifetime of misery, in seeing the effects in their children. It pains me so to think how some humans can make others suffer so. Samson... I've seen the memorial candles being floated in the river there... what an awesome and tearful sight. I watched in complete silence for ages; the distress and love which burned in those candle flames hit at my heart. I agree with you wholeheartedly... the World needs to live in harmony and respect its fellow World citizens, in order to create a war-free planet, where its children share and care for each other. That would be the ultimate achievement... World Peace. I'll join you in that prayer. xxx
15 May 07
I've found a picture of the Candle/Lantern Floating Ceremony which is held in Hiroshima, annually. An awesome sight indeed. I also would like to make you aware, if not already, of the fact that several areas of the UK remember Hiroshima in different ways, between August 6th and 9th each year. Events are organised by the CND (Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament)each year, the example, in 2006. If only the need for this hadn't arisen... too little too late, I know, but those guys who suffered and are still suffering are not forgotten. Norwich CND will be painting shadows on the pavements in the city centre on the evening of 5th August, and leafleting there the next day, alongside a stall which will have a display linking the Hiroshima/Nagasaki remembrance with U.S. plans for a new generation of nuclear weapons and missile defence. They will also help to organise a church service of remembrance on 9th August at one of the city centre churches, or in the Cathedral. Peace and love to all. x