By Juan Ramirez

Juan Ramirez continuously believed he may die in Vietnam. As becoming up within the San Francisco sector within the early Sixties, "Nam used to be there, simply over the horizon, just like the far away thump of artillery. His father and uncles had served in global conflict II, one other uncle in Korea. a number of cousins had enlisted. At nineteen, Ramirez made up our minds to include the warfare. In 1968, the yr of the Tet offensive, Ramirez joined the U.S. marines. bloody excursions later, Ramirez survived, yet at gigantic expense. two times wounded, undesirably discharged, and laid low with survivor's guilt, Ramirez surveys the toll of Vietnam on flesh and spirit during this attractive memoir. Ramirez tells his tale in a voice infrequently heard from the conflict, that of a Chicano soldier. by way of tracing his roots, and exploring the cultural pressures and social demons that weighed on his kinfolk and group, Ramirez bargains an unflinching examine the autumn and redemption of 1 Mexican American veteran.

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Additional info for A Patriot After All: The Story of a Chicano Vietnam Vet

Sample text

I remember it like it was yesterday there would not be one day Sergeant King did not put hands on me. On the twelfth or thirteenth day I had just gone to bed when I realized that I had gotten through the entire day without being singled out for punishment or abuse. Just as I began to feel pleased with myself, Sergeant King came crashing into the barracks. He came right to my rack (sleeping cot), where I was already getting out to stand at attention. " It was uncanny the way he seemed to know the very instant I had started to feel comfortable, as if he were letting me know I would never be allowed to feel comfortable.

Ramirez. " "Mrs. Ramirez, it's unfair to put such expectations on John. He would have a very difficult time of it even on the junior college level. Not everyone is suited for college, Mrs. Ramirez. John has other options. " I lost my patience. " I said. "Stop it! " I turned to my counselor. "Look, I've been out on my own for the last six months now. I'm able to make my own decisions. " "It is true, John, the chances are very good that you could be drafted within this year if you go to work in June.

Pedro's position as a ranch foreman paid good money, and they were able to build their own house. Life was good enough for them for twelve years; then it all changed when Pedro was killed in a farming accident. After Pedro's death, my great-grandmother and her children left La Puente with Rafael Chavez, the man who was my great-grandmother's lover even while she had been married to Pedro. My great-grandmother and her children started working the various fields of central California, picking apricots, cotton, and peaches but mostly grapes.

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