The Vietnam war was an era of misunderstanding,disillusionment, drugs and sexual revolution. During the height of the sixties, we entered a war that brought permanent changes to our culture and society. Perhaps you were there, perhaps not; perhaps you were not yet born. Regardless, most readers are unaware of the tragedies and triumphs of this strange and far away war.
As an impressionable young Stewardess transporting troops to the battlefields of Vietnam I saw the best and worst of times for our soldiers. My heart was stirred with these young men who faced war and the challenges they encountered returning back to an unsettling America. Weaving a tapestry of their stories along with mine and other Stewardesses led me on this journey to write.
Descending into the black, thick jungle below, the silence in the aircraft felt heavy and foreboding. Night flying was as dark as the evil below, revealing the horrors of war. Only the low roar of the engines could break the deafening silence of the night as we looked out the windows watching the vivid scenes of bombs lighting up the ground. DaNang was the most intimidating, fearful and uncertain territories to land in Vietnam. Our flights were in the early mornings while it was still dark and because we could visually see
the bombings below, it became one of the places that I hated to land.As we descended, the men began their preparation for landing. They kept their emotions within, but we witnessed the changes in their faces as they became combat ready. Our descent was rapid, and the explosions on the ground appeared close. There was an eerie silence hovering over the cabin as the wheels lowered; we knew this was our time to take our jump seats. With 165 soldiers on board, we felt protected landing in this warzone. With an abrupt touchdown, stairs were brought to the airplane for both the rear and front doors. As we opened our exits, the men stood up and ready to deplane at a fast pace. Putting our hats and gloves on, we were the first to go down the stairs
even though the company wanted us to remain on board. We said our goodbyes at the bottom of the stairs. The men moved fast down the stairs, their boots hitting the tarmac with loud thuds and they were gone from our sights. We felt the exploding bombs vibrate the ground under our feet and prepared to run to the bunkers with the soldiers who met the aircraft.