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Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion: Presidential (Through Nov 2009) Donate to DU
Feanorcurufinwe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-26-04 03:19 AM
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Veterans see Kerry as powerful symbol
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Scorned, spat upon and ignored when they returned home from battle, Vietnam veterans are finding vindication and a voice in Sen. John Kerry three decades later, several veterans said yesterday.

Its a renaissance for us, said Rick Hassett, 53, of Dorchester, Mass., who is in New Hampshire campaigning for the Democratic Presidential hopeful.

Hassett hopped a bus from Boston with about 20 other veterans to mobilize support for the Massachusetts senator among veterans before the Iowa caucuses. When the tired, gritty crew pulled into Des Moines 30 hours later, a crowd met them with cheers and applause.

It was a far cry from the jeers and derision that greeted the Bronze Star-decorated veteran when he came home from Vietnam in early 1972.

It was wonderful. I was vindicated, he said, his voice cracking slightly with emotion. That was the welcome home I never got.

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