James Hertner Featured on Vietnam Reflections Series
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund and Lilly Broadcasting are teaming up to bring The Wall That Heals to Erie on Memorial Day Weekend.
Over the next ten months, Erie News Now will feature Vietnam Veterans and their families.
James Hertner graduated from Academy High School in 1963.
He entered the Military in 1965 and served for four years.
He did a 12 month tour of duty in Vietnam.
Hertner has visited the Vietnam Wall in Washington D.C. a number of times, the last time with his wife of 52 years. "A lady came up to my wife and said, why is that man crying? She said, he served in Vietnam and lost several friends. The lady started to cry, then my wife started to cry."
He also had a moving experience in Meadville four years ago, when the Moving Wall made its way to Crawford County. "I went over to extend my hand to a Veteran and thank him for his service, he grabbed me, then hugged me and cried like a child for minutes. My only thought was, how long was this man holding all of this emotion in?"
Mornings are difficult for the 77 year-old, but he's coping every day and enjoying his life.
After decades in the Real Estate business, Jim will retire on May 31st, 2022.
Vietnam Reflections runs every Thursday night at 6 & 11 on Erie News Now.
We are also looking for volunteers throughout Memorial Day Weekend and we have a sign-up sheet on our website, erienewsnow.com/vietnam.