In episodes 880 and 886 of this podcast, Vietnam Veteran News, Vietnam vet Jim Crigler was featured. He is in the process of pulling off a tremendous achievement to benefit and honor Vietnam Gold Star Families. His plan is to paddle a specially fitted Wenona Canoe down the entire 2300 miles of the mighty Mississippi River. In this episode a story will be shared that provides an update on Jim’s Mississippi mission. The story comes from WCCO CBS Channel 4 in Minneapolis, Minnesota titled: Vietnam vet Canoeing Entire Mississippi River To Honor Gold Star Families that was submitted by Molly Rosenblatt.
According to the story Jim has traveled 500 miles down the river so far and expects to complete his epic trip at New Orleans in the last week of June. He is making the trip to bring awareness to a wrong he wants to right for Vietnam Vets and their families. He said “a lot of Americans don’t know what a gold star family is. It’s a family that has lost a loved one in combat, in service to their country, protecting our freedoms.”
He “wants Americans to look up a gold star family in their community, he wants them to get a stamp, and an envelope and a piece of paper, and write them a thank you note for the sacrifice they’ve made to our country.”
CLICK HERE for Jim’s website.
CLICK HERE for Jim’s Facebook page.
On a related matter, the writer of this story, a meteorologist with WCCO, Molly Rosenblatt has a story that pays a tremendous tribute to Anne Morrissy Merick who was featured in the previous podcast episode. Merick was the ABC news producer who led the way for women reporters in Vietnam. She fought for the opportunity to accompany troops in the field and cover stories on a first hand basis. Initially General Westmoreland banned female reporters in combat but she went over his head and successfully appealed to the Secretary of Defense in Washington.
Merick went on to serve as a reporter on the front lines of Vietnam for seven years. Her work in Vietnam opened doors for women in the field of reporting like Molly Rosenblatt.