SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) – Every veteran has a story to tell. Now, one local author is looking to preserve those stories forever in a book.
Most of the time, after a war, veterans come back home bringing with them honor, memories, and plenty of stories to tell.
After serving in the U.S. Army in Vietnam from 1968-69 in the 4th Infantry, Gene Murphy returned home without the use of his legs…
“Lyle Bowes had actually saved my life… after I was shot up. He carried me about 400 meters. We got pinned down though for 14 hours. he actually dug a hole for me and stayed with me the whole night,” Vietnam Veteran Gene Murphy said
But with quite the story to tell.
“I guess I thought, after initially being wounded in the jungle, I thought I was going to die,” Murphy said.
His is just one of 31 stories complied into a single 450-page book written by Author Doctor Steve Feimer.
“I thought I would do six stories and have it take me six months, but actually did 31 stories and it took me nine years,” Author Dr. Steven Feimer said.
The book is titled ‘Vietnam Vets: Still Coming Home.’ It contains photos provided by the vets themselves of their times in the service. Each one is from the Midwest with a South Dakota connection. They span all branches and all ethnicities.
“You gain a greater appreciation for the sacrifice our veterans went through and a lot of them are still going through. The war just didn’t end for them when they came back from Vietnam,” Feimer said.
Like Murphy, who continues to fight for others who still need help.
“We made what we called a ‘pact,’ a contract with the good lord that I would come back to the world and do some good things,” Murphy said.
Since his return, he’s dedicated 45 years of his life to the Disabled American Veterans and several other veteran services.
“We, as my brothers and sisters, I think a lot of them needed help, so somebody had to step up to the plate,” Murphy said.
Hoping their stories can influence others, and inspire ones that are yet to be written.
“They really wanted to just be acknowledged for their contribution and appreciated for what they went through,” Feimer said.