Ron’s Mom On: Thank You Sir!

Our Vietnam Veterans



Our Vietnam veterans whose price was so high,

That they have to fight and so many have to die.

They showed us courage of men tho they were young boys,

Tho 58,000 will speak no more their hearts will be with us for ever more,

Yes, our Vietnam veterans both dead and alive payed the price for you and I.

By Ron Hayes



I’d known Lil Lonnie and his siblings since they were youngsters, playing stick ball, running from lawn to lawn, going to Aunt Willie Eva’s Park, with Ron and his siblings in tow. Lil Lonnie was the oldest, so he was the one in charge. Although my kids were slightly younger, it made no difference to them. They led them around the neighborhood, “showing them the ropes” and keeping them safe while their Gramps or I ran errands. They were also ALWAYS at each other’s houses, sharing corn bread and catsup. (lol) Ms. Josephine, their mother, was probably unaware. We were next door neighbors and in those days, neighbors loved and cared for one another.


Those were happy times, times that will never be forgotten!  There is just one thing that saddens me though, and that is, I wasn’t aware of Lil Lonnie’s Vietnam Service. I did not forget, I just never knew! We all have heard how Vietnam Veterans were treated, upon returning home from that war. We can remember those times, during the Vietnam war when, a soldier travelling through the airports was not greeted with love nor honor. Most were either spat upon, insulted, or called “baby killers”. The veterans of the Vietnam era are like a lost group. They are the forgotten veterans. For this, I’m so very sorry!


However, the war was not all inclusive of Lil Lonnie’s life, he did what was expected of him for his country. He served and protected. But, there was also the other portion; a part that I knew very little about.


My life and Little Lonnie’s life, went in different directions when he became a young man. I don’t know the history of his life after that, however, it is my sincere wish that it impacted everyone’s life that he met thereafter, just as it did my children’s and mine when he was literally, LIL LONNIE! RIP Lil Lonnie.


  1. These are very powerful and moving words Ron. Amongst the many facets of tragedy of the Vietnam War I find the anger shown to returning veterans hateful not just for showing an ignorance of the circumstances these draftees found themselves in, but also because I always had the impression it was a hate that was ‘fashionable’ and ‘cool’ to be doing If folk had felt that strongly and deeply enough they would have been showing these men compassion. For all the legends and myths the 1960s and its subsequent’ child the early 70s a lot of facets and ‘names’ can seem very shallow in retrospect.
    Take care

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I went to a funeral yesterday of a friend, age 72. He was a veteran and so his wife decided to bury him at one of the VA’s in NYS. We made the trip and shivered in the cold for a few short moments. A friend and I looked at the rows upon rows of graves and felt a sorrow that went beyond the loss of our friend. May I never take freedom for granted. Even if America isn’t perfect, I understand there are some places worse off. If it weren’t for our soldiers, I shudder to think. May they forgive us and may God bless them and restore them. Thanks for your service, Ron.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s