Bob Oakes, host of WBUR’s Morning Edition, will be reporting from Vietnam for the next week. Oakes traveled overseas with two Boston-area veterans for the 40th anniversary of the United States evacuation of Saigon. This special series starts today and will air every day through the week of April 27th only on WBUR’s Morning Edition.
Massachusetts sent thousands of its young men and women to Vietnam, serving a critical role in the war. The first and last United States military casualties were soldiers from Massachusetts. The lives of both of these men will be honored and profiled during this series. In addition, four Massachusetts veterans were among the final 50 at the embassy during the last days of the war. Two of those four, William Newell and John Ghilain, are returning to Vietnam for the 40th anniversary. This is the first time these marines will return to Vietnam since the fall of Saigon in April 1975.
Some highlights of “40 Years Later: A Return to Vietnam” include:
Friday, April 24: “Massachusetts Bookends the War, Part 1.” A story of Richard B. Fitzgibbon Jr., the first man killed in the war.
Tuesday, April 28: Host Bob Oakes will interview Vietnam veterans William Newell and John Ghilain in front of the same embassy gate they defended 40 years ago.
Wednesday, April 29: “Massachusetts Bookends the War, Part 2.” WBUR explores the life and death of the last man to be killed in the war, Charlie McMahon.
‘40 Years later: A Return to Vietnam’ will have special features on WBUR’s website including photos and video. For more information, visit the series landing page at wbur.org.