Tom Kalinowski: Vietnam Reflections
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund and Lilly Broadcasting have teamed up to bring the "Wall That Heals" to Erie on Memorial Day Weekend.
Leading up to the arrival of the "Wall", we are featuring local Vietnam Veterans.
In part three of Vietnam Reflections, we visited with a McDowell High School graduate, who served in Vietnam for 15 months.
Tom Kalinowski arrived in Vietnam in June of 1968.
He told Erie News Now, "When you first get there and you get off the plane, you are like, why are we getting attacked?"
His duties included communicating with family members, after soldiers were injured. "It was an experience that I will never forget, letting families know that soldiers are surviving."
After he returned to Erie, his frustrations grew. " We were called dope smoking baby killers. One of the worst experiences I had, was serving as a recruiter. It was an impossible task for four years."
Kalinowski has five brothers and they all served served. All but one brother retired from the Military.
Vietnam Reflections runs every Thursday on Erie News Now at 6:00 p.m.