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422: David Lucier

United States Army

I left Vietnam and the Army in December 1969 and headed home for the holidays. My family met me at the airport and greeted me with open arms and big signs. There were tears of joy that flowed over smiles of relief. Both my parents were WWII veterans ... my mom a Women’s Airforce Service Pilot (WASP) and my dad a Lt. Commander who served on a destroyer in the South Pacific for two years. Shortly after arriving home, I moved to Phoenix for a job and got engaged. In July, my father was murdered in a car bombing. In August, I was married and in September I started school at ASU. Four years later, I graduated with honors with a degree in Political Science. To this day, I couldn't tell you the name of one person with whom I went to school. I kept a very low profile. I was older than my fellow students and a Vietnam Veteran on an American campus in the early 1970s. I drank heavily on weekends for the first couple of years after my return "to the world." My wife indicated that this should not continue. I tool heed! No one really asked my about my Army/Vietnam experience and I was in no position nor was I even capable of talking about it ... so it sat inside of me for decades. I came home physically and emotionally exhausted from 12 months of heavy combat; what little food there was, was bad, I was sleep deprived, and physically injured. I'd been stabbed, blown up, and beaten. As a Green Beret medic, I self-treated and medicated. I walked through my first five years after returning in an altered state. It was one of the roughest periods in my life.

David F. Lucier, President

AZ Veterans & Military Leadership Alliance

Arizona Veterans Hall of Fame - Class of 2009