Highway Dedicated To Vietnam Veterans
When Vietnam soldiers returned from war their homecoming in many cases was full of protests and anger.
Now the Laredo community is doing more to make up for what happened years ago.
City and county officials are paying tribute to Vietnam veterans by dedicating a highway that runs straight through the heart of the city.
“Today we celebrate and pay tribute to our local Vietnam veterans which has long been overdue.”
City, county and state officials officially dedicating Highway 83 to Vietnam veterans.
sitting proudly in front is Francisca Martinez who told us she felt like crying as the sign was unveiled.
Her five sons served in the army one of her sons died in the Vietnam war.
“I started cutting the pictures in the paper and I never thought I'd cut my brothers picture.”
A surviving son veteran Antonio Martinez was moved to tears remembering his brother..and other Laredoans who gave their lives but got little respect in return.
“They went to do their job and didn’t come back.”
He's happy for the efforts to right a wrong.
“It means a lot to us because when we came back from Vietnam nobody paid any attention to us they called us baby killers, every name on the book we were known for.”
But now the Texas Vietnam Veterans Memorial Highway runs through the heart of the city.
“What this represents to us i guess you might say thank you so what we've done.”
Martinez says the gesture mends a broken heart.
“It's past due. After 45 years Vietnam veterans are getting the recognition they deserve.”
Not only his brother died, but many of his friends.
27 Laredoan's lost their lives in the Vietnam war.
Many thanks goes to the initiation of the project by Councilman Johnny Rendon who also lost his friends.