ALCOVE (3)  1968 - 69

VIETNAM VETERANS OF OREGON

LIVING MEMORIAL

VIETNAM VETERANS OF OREGON

LIVING MEMORIAL

VIETNAM AND OREGON

. . . War Events (3) . . .

On Vietnamese New Year's Day of 1968, North Vietnam attacked 100 towns and cities in South Vietnam and for a few hours occupied part of the American embassy in Saigon.  Though quickly repulsed, this show of military force by the North (combined with over 24,000 casualties by the end of 1969) led to more anti-war protests at home.

 

Faced with a dramatic loss of public support for his advocacy of the war, President Lyndon Johnson did not seek re-election.  Richard Nixon, LBJ's successor, began to gradually withdraw US ground forces but also increased the air war and extended it to Cambodia.

 

. . . Home Events (1) . . .

 

As usual, there was both good and bad news.  A Creswell man died when North Koreans captured the USS Pueblo off their coast.

 

Here at home, voters rejected budgets for 100 school districts.  Down in Lakeview, students undertook a counter-measure.  When their new Teen Center opened, they invited the whole town to a "get acquainted" dance.  In Enterprise, a high-school graduate went off to West Point and another was crowned "Ideal Girl" at Oregon St. University.

The high school in Coos Bay was proud to have its biology teacher chosen as the best in Oregon.  And at North Bend, across the bay, the school superintendent retired after 43 years of teaching.  He never missed a single day.

. . . Home Events (2) . . .

There were two more 43-year celebrations.  In Turner, the postmistress retired from 43 years of service.  In Jefferson they gave a gold medal to the school bus driver who never had an accident in 43 years.

Jefferson also made news when Armstrong, the town's champion frog, leapt 14' 3" to win the jumping contest at the Mint Festival.  And the Albany JayCees erected a permanent memorial that listed those from Linn County who had lost their lives during 20th-century wars.

. . . Home Events (4) . . .

There were, as well, many efforts of civic improvement.  Toledo passed an ordinance to forbid the growing eyesore of junked cars.  In the town of Coquille, an ambulance was purchased after many years of having to depend on a mortuary hearse for service.

Coquille also had some unusual foreign exposure.  Japan's champion high-school wrestling team arrived for matches with the local boys and stayed at their homes.  And there was the Coquille man who brought his adopted Vietnamese daughter back home to start a new life.

. . . Home Events (5) . . .

The bad news in Coquille was the "Flood of '69" where a man trying to rescue his stranded cattle was drowned.  A Lakeview man at the Joseph Rodeo was thrown from his horse and killed.  In one coastal community, a young man shot the town policeman and then shot himself.

But there were so many happy occasions, all those annual celebrations that so many places anticipate: Amity's pancake breakfast, Redmond's Potato Festival, Pendleton's Round-Up, and the Oregon State Fair which had just passed its one-hundreth year.

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