Missing-in-Action: A Case Unresolved (Vietnam War)

Discussion in 'Past Life Memories' started by landsend, Aug 30, 2018.

  1. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    The Secret Repatriation Program

    Browsing around on the internet in 2018, I came across a book written by POW wife Barbara Birchim called ‘Is Anybody Listening?’. The book details Birchim’s journey to understanding her husband’s disappearance in Vietnam, as well as the discrepancies behind her husband’s missing status. In the book she talks about a ‘secret repatriation program’, which was run like a witness protection program. Basically, this program was designed to bring back men who were left behind after the war in a way that would not have political ramifications for both the USA and Vietnam. In other words – no one would ever know.

    The only way that such a program would work is if the repatriated men agreed to take on a new identity, a new life. Utmost secrecy would be essential to its success. But how would you ensure that secrecy was kept by all parties, and, what sort of men would the US government be interested in bringing back? Unless, of course, the US were only interested in bringing back those who would be useful, and those who could be kept under government control – those like Terry and Jim Birchim who were Special Forces trained.

    As far fetched as this sounds, I have read separate references to such a program.

    In June 2018, I found an article referencing the aforementioned program on a POW/MIA website. It stated that George Russell Leard, an Airforce communications and computer specialist, claimed to have worked behind scenes on such a program, although he did not testify before the Senate.

    Also interesting is the story of Rosemary Conway. Conway was a CIA agent captured and detained by the Laotians on espionage charges in the 1970’s and released in 1975. In 1987 whilst working as an English teacher in Bangkok, Thailand, she met another American man who claimed to have been a POW. He told a story of being sent to a Soviet Bloc country, and escaping via a neighbouring Scandinavian country. He said he was returned to the United States in 1979 and given a new identity, sent to a school in Florida before being sent to work in the Middle East where he met his wife, a Thai woman.

    The man claimed that his name was Robert Greer. To Conway’s surprise, this name was already familiar to her. In 1984, she had seen a document that had said that Greer had been given a new identity.

    Robert Greer had been missing-in-action in Vietnam since 1964. The US claims to have repatriated his remains in the form of teeth and a jawbone, extracted from an old grave site – his family accepted these remains, even though the dental charts were provided by the US government. The doubt remains that the teeth did indeed belong to Greer.

    My thoughts based on what ‘Greer’ said that he was working in the Middle East backs up my assumption that this man was working for the Government.

    In 1992, Brig. General Lacy testified before Senate that he knew about a secret repatriation program where some MIAs were bought back to the country and channelled via the Veterans Administration. He claims to have personally met one such man in a Veterans Hospital in Oklahoma in 1989.

    On Sep 1, 2018, I came across a newspaper article on a whim to check the newspaper archives for any correlating information. It paraphrases a book written by Mark Sauter and Jim Sanders called, ‘The Men We Left Behind’.

    Again, it tells an all too familiar story. The article quotes an unidentified ‘Major’ who claims to have received an anonymous phone call from an old war buddy called ‘Glen Lane’. Problem is, Glen Lane went missing in Laos in 1968 whilst working on a sensitive SOG mission. These were highly secretive Special Forces operations, run undercover in territory where US forces were not legally supposed to be. It was no secret that such missions were CIA funded and run.

    The ‘Major’ met his old buddy in a bar, and instantly recognised him. The two reconciled over a beer or two, and then Glen Lane told his story. Lane was living under a new name, and identity ‘Gary Brubaker’. Apparently he’d been a POW in Laos, but was left behind after the 1973 Paris Peace accords. He had been switched back and forth between Laos/South Vietnam, then, suddenly, in 1977, his guards gave him some clean clothes and a chance to shave. He was sent to Hanoi, then onto Bangkok where he met a US official. He indicated that he wasn’t the only one to come out during that time.

    Glen Lane, under this new identity, claimed to be still working for the US Government. If you look up Glen Lane on the internet, you will find him still listed as MIA/PFD (Presumptive Finding of Death). The same status held by Terry, and many others.

    In conclusion, although still far-fetched sounding, what I felt to be true for Terry seemed to have some basis in reality. What was most stark of all is that I had seen Terry shot in America back in 2007 before I had even known his true identity. I had seen him board the airliner in Vietnam after all the POWs were supposedly home. And here are people saying very similar things, from different sources.

    My visions were pointing towards being sent to the Soviet Union, as Greer claims to have been in that article. But if Terry was sent to the Soviet Union, then how did Terry get back?

    In September 2018, a succession of memories came to me. Some of them related to Terry’s life after returning to the USA, which I’ll discuss later. For now, I want to discuss memories of what appears to be Terry’s escape from the USSR.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2019
  2. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    If in Doubt, Head For Switzerland

    On the 25 September 2018, I was meditating when a very disturbing image came to me.

    I’m staring at a small wooden row boat in the middle of a lake. The lake is surrounded by mountainous evergreen forest.

    I then get the impression of a dead body, wrapped in a blue shroud which is tied together with a blue chord. I’m aware that the dead body is on the boat. I watch in horror as the shrouded body is thrown off the boat, falling deep into the depths of the lake.


    That imagery disturbed me to the point I opened my eyes. My mind ran in a frenzy, jumping to conclusions. What now? Had I killed someone? Could my past life memories get any more depressing? Just as I was beginning to feel I was resolving my previous life memories, this threw a spanner in the works.

    I spent the day trying to understand what had gone on. After some reflection, I told myself that this most likely was not a murder. Dismissing the imagery as imagination helped me settle that thought. I was going through some personal issues, trying to adjust to the present moment. I didn’t want to deal with yet more issues from Terry. Despite that, the restless feeling that there were things still unresolved ate at me.

    The next day, I had a free moment so I decided to meditate again.

    Reoccurring imagery of marching down the Ho Chi Minh trail came back to me, I had further details of the other American with me, including a potential name for him. What was clear is that he was not the same man seen in other visions, the one I had called ‘Brownie’.

    I ask to go forward in time.

    The lake, and the boat came back to me.

    Again, I can see the lake and the boat. The area is cold, mountainous, craggy. I can even see the colour of the soil here – it is light brown. I’m standing on the shore of the lake.

    It seems this is somewhere on the European Continent, possibly Siberia. It’s an isolated place, in the middle of nowhere.

    I’m aware that I am not alone. There is at least one other guy, possibly two, plus the dead body in the blue shroud. One of the men stands out, he has a shaved head, and a name similar to 'Sergei'. He appears in his mid-thirties, looks Siberian or Slavic ethnicity. There is the thought/feeling that these guys were Special Forces type, but not American. Possibly working or collaborating with Western forces. I trust them with my life, and have great respect for them. These people were helping me to escape.

    I have no shoes on. Looking down at my feet, they are bruised and sore, perhaps from many days of walking. Perhaps I have taken my shoes off to help push the timber boat out onto the water. I helped place the dead body into the shroud. The shroud is the blue tarpaulin taken from the boat, and we used the rope which tethered the tarpaulin to the boat to keep the makeshift shroud in place around the body. It is not clear who the dead person is, only that he was travelling with us. Possibly he was one of the men who was helping to coordinate the escape. It is not clear how he died.

    I watch from the shore of the lake as one of the men drops the dead body from the boat and into the deep water. I sign myself with the cross, and kiss my thumb and forefinger on my right hand. I say a prayer to myself.

    Again, questioning where this was -- Siberia comes to mind. Questioning where we were heading -- Switzerland.

    I see myself holding an hunting rifle, either a Remington, or similar. It seems to have a long metal barrel. I watch the sky above the lake after the body is displaced, and sees a large bird of prey, possibly an eagle, flying above.

    Questioning why these men are helping me. The answer -- they were on the 'inside', and they are assisting me either for monetary gain or political reasons. They were helping me to reach a certain point, before they would depart. 'Minsk' comes to mind, and then up to the border -- of Czechoslovakia via Ukraine.


    Where had this occurred? Where had I escaped from? A couple of months before I had the impression of being held in, or near the Ural Mountains. The USSR was such a vast territory that it could have been anywhere.

    The visions continued:

    My hands are cuffed. I’ve been reprimanded near the border/between the borders of countries -- possibly Czech/W. Germany or Czech/Austria. Either way, it seems I’m on Czech side when I’m reprimanded. 'I see a border guard wearing a thick green winter jacket, a fur hat and holding a rifle in his hands. The guard is leading me somewhere.

    They put me in a room, an interrogation room with blank walls and a table. I’m still cuffed. I know that I appear unkempt and sick from months of walking and travelling. In this room, a big stern man (middle-aged) questions me, asking me who I am, and where I have come from. The impression is that I have worked on a cover story. Possibly saying that I was a journalist who was travelling through and got lost. Either way, I state that firmly that I am a US citizen, and that I want to return to my country, that I have misplaced my passport/documents. I talk in a mixture of jilted Russian and English. The feeling is that I played down my knowledge of Russian to appear like a hapless tourist.

    The interrogator leaves the room to make a phonecall. When he comes back, I am placed in the back of a vehicle, and driven somewhere. There appears to be no explanation of where I am going.

    The place I am driven to is of a building with white stone, an old historical building. It appears to be evening, or early morning, everything is dark. There's black wrought iron details, and a stone statue of an eagle on a post. The pavement is made of cobble, grey stones. The building appears to be on a sloped/hilly area, narrow. The building is possibly an embassy, because there is an American flag outside. Prague/Czechoslovakia comes instantly to mind.

    The guards lead me up to this building, my hands still cuffed at the front.

    They take me inside. The building inside is very decadent. A young American woman receives us. She tells the Czech guards that the handcuffs would not be necessary, and they free me. She then leads me through to the back rooms.

    I’m met by a man in a suit. The man appears to be an official of some sort, he has an air of importance about him. He wears an overcoat, a white shirt and a red tie. He's a tall man, taller than me with broad shoulders and a square face, greyish brown hair. The man reaches out to shake my hand. The man wears leather gloves, presumably from being outside in the cold. For this reason, it would appear that the man was called out to deal with me at short notice. The man leads me to a room through a door on the left wall of this inner lobby.

    The room looks like an office space, probably the man's office. It has a large desk with certificates/books lining the walls. The man as he enters the room takes off his coat and gloves and places them on a coat stand. He then sits behind the desk. Behind the desk is a window. There's an impression of two armed security guards standing either side of the window, near the wall behind the desk.

    The man has his hands steeped as he observes me. I sit opposite the desk. The man talks to me, relaying to me that I tell them the truth of who I am. He asks me to tell him where I came from, that it was important. I relay to him my full name, the date I was shot down in Vietnam, the years of captivity followed by the years spent in the USSR, then my eventual escape through Soviet territory. The man stares blankly at me, not quite believing what he was hearing. He asks me if I’m being absolutely truthful. I cannot believe he is questioning me. The man then appears to pick up a chord telephone on his desk, and makes a phone call.

    I’m led back out the room by security as the man speaks in private on the telephone.

    When I am ushered back in, I stand in the office with the security personal situated behind me near the door. The man is still seated at his desk, and he now addresses me by my name. The man then stands to receive me. Without warning, he walks up to me and embraces me. Then he stands back, his hands gripping my shoulders. The man looks me square in the eyes and says, 'Welcome home.'

    I couldn't believe the reaction. I was in shock, disbelief. Emotion overcomes me. I didn't know what to expect, but certainly not this. I break down and start to sob. The man also was crying, and wipes a tear from his eye. The man tells the security personal behind me to get me some clothes, food and a doctor.


    Finally, I opened my eyes, and felt the tears on my present face. I could still see very clearly the man who had said to me 'Welcome home'. I wondered if he was still living... he would be amongst the few who knew that men were left behind.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2019
    Speedwell, fireflydancing and glia21 like this.
  3. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    PART SIXTEEN – Repatriation

    Terry was shot down in March 1969. If my perceptions are accurate, and he arrived in the US Embassy in 1984, that’s almost fifteen years between captivity, and freedom. I was born in Oct 1990. That gives Terry six years on American soil before he his ultimately shot, and killed.

    In hindsight, I looked up the US Embassy in Prague and it did match some of my perceptions -- it was on a narrow cobbled street, hilly, and in an old building:

    Vlašská_US_embassy_Prague_5955.JPG
    US Embassy Prague

    The date of 1984 came to me after looking at the US ambassadors in the late 70s/early 80s. That date matches the time frame of the ambassador who most matches my perceptions. But I do take in consideration that this date could be wrong if the man who I met was not the ambassador.

    In May 2018, I had some brief imagery come to me. The imagery was of a medical facility of some kind. My thoughts were that it was an isolation unit where Terry was held prior to repatriation. There was no contact with outsiders in this place, and he appeared to be alone the majority of the time. Other times they either were interrogating him, or doing medical tests.

    Then of course there was the debriefing on Brownie, which I feel happened in this same facility. Later, I saw how detailed they examined him, down to taking photographs of his face and profile. This backs up my strong feeling that certain people know about the efforts to repatriate these forgotten prisoners from the Vietnam War.

    Again, the impression from this was that Terry was given a new identity, which included a new name, new place of birth, and instructions on where he could and couldn’t live. He was not to contact his family. The reasons behind this I gather are many fold, but the strongest reason for not contacting family members was to keep the secret repatriations secret. The POW/MIA families were a strong community, and if one family member learnt about this, it wouldn’t take long for other family members to wonder where their missing family members were, too. And then they would demand answers from the government(s) who had so blatantly lied to them over the years.

    There were too many powerful people who had too much to lose by the secret coming out.

    In short, it couldn’t be done. It is also my feeling that many of the repatriated men continued working for the government. By doing this, they were continuing to live under a guise of a secrecy. The government could keep a close eye on them, and their activities. Many intel folk live under different aliases and handles – this really was no different.

    One of the repeated imagery I see is of driving a red pick up truck. It is the red pickup that I see myself driving shortly before the shooting incident. I recorded the following on the June 27 2018:


    ‘I’m driving a car. This car is most likely car that I was driving prior to the shooting incident. It is a red colour. It has a silver/metal grill at the front. 'Chevy 65' comes to my mind. Possibly I did some farm work, hence why I was driving a pickup. I’m driving through countryside. The country is expansive, can see far in the distance, sparse vegetation (no mountains, no dense forest), could see fields, and long straight roads. Driving occasionally past farm buildings. Location appeared North American based on buildings, roads, landscape. I was driving on the right side of the road, steering wheel to the left.’


    1965chevypickup2.jpeg
    A 1965 Chevy pickup -- similar to that I saw

    On the first of September 2018, I had a very brief flash of a house. It was crystal clear like viewing a photograph, it appeared for a second, and was gone. I drew a very rudimentary sketch. I could see that the house was isolated, wooden, painted white and it had orange/brown roof tiles. There was patchy grass outside and the red pickup appeared to be parked out the front. To the left of the house there appeared to be a silo of some kind, or perhaps a tree. There were no other houses around. It appeared to be out in the country.

    nebraskafarmhouse.jpeg
    A Nebraska farm house -- similar to the house

    From that imagery, at first I considered if this was one of the houses that Terry may have lived in, perhaps whilst being stationed at Washington State prior to his final tour of Vietnam. But then, after considering that the red pickup appeared to be parked outside, and the fact the house was isolated/in a country setting drew the conclusion that this was either the place Terry was working after being repatriated to America, or the house that he was living during that time.

    As I wondered if this was Terry’s house, a brief thought passed through me. If this was his house – did he live there alone? It didn’t look like the sort of place someone would live alone. And with that thought came the thought – did he remarry? And, if he remarried, did he have any more children?

    On September 5th, more clarity came to me during a meditation.

    I’m at a house, it appears to be my house because of it’s familiarity. It’s daytime, the sun is bright out and feels warm. I park my car (the pickup) outside the property. The grass here is patchy and dusty. The house itself is two-story. There appears to be something to the left of the house, perhaps a silo, and a tree to the right. The surroundings are isolated out in the country, surrounded by farmland.

    I enter the house. Inside, can see the property is wooden. The layout downstairs is open plan, the front door opens to the lounge, and there’s stairs that go up to the bedrooms. The kitchen was at the back, square in shape -- there may have been a barrier, or a table between the kitchen and the dining area but maybe not.

    Entering the kitchen, and can see that there is a woman there. She is wearing a dark green top, which is stretched over her stomach. She is pregnant. The woman has long blonde hair with a fringe (bangs), and big blue eyes. She was an attractive woman and appears to be in her mid-thirties. The knowledge comes to me that we met each other in a bar.

    Next, I see how we met each other.

    I’m sitting in a rural bar, drinking a beer. I have an impression of how I now look – I’ve grown out a small beard which is dark grayish brown in colour, my hair has grown out, too, a similar colour to my beard. I’m wearing a trucker cap. Underneath the cap my hair reaches the nape of my neck, it’s sort of curly and bedraggled. I’m wearing a jacket which had patches on it – what the patches were I’m not too sure.

    I’m keenly aware of the fact that I’m still very thin, that I’ve not put the weight fully back on since being a prisoner of war. Feel bedraggled and downbeat.

    From the corner of my eye I notice a woman with blonde hair. She’s wearing jeans, a blouse, and a cowboy hat. She notices me watching her, and comes over to where I was sitting at the bar. She strikes up a conversation. She takes a look at my ring finger and notices I’m not wearing a ring.

    Not sure why she was attracted to me. There’s the impression that she notices that I was a Vietnam Vet, and that she felt sorry for me. There’s another element here, that we both were talking about being married in the past. The feeling is that she was once married to a Vietnam War veteran, either he died during the war, or after. Perhaps that’s the main reason she was attracted to me.

    We go and we dance together. It’s then that I become keenly aware to the fact that I’ve not been with a woman for a long time. One thing leads to another.

    I wake up in some sort of motel, or small room that maybe I was renting out at that time. She was in the bed, and I was rushing to get dressed as if I had some place to be (work?). She was asking to see me again. I didn’t want to make any false promises, but maybe left her a number.

    The imagery switches back to that ‘present’ moment in the wooden house.

    There’s the impression that I’m away for long periods of time from the house for some sort of ‘work’, and then would return to the house. The other impression is that we, this woman and myself had a child together, a baby boy.

    The last imagery is of myself with my hair cut short and neat, my face clean shaven and myself wearing something smart like a gray suit having just come back from this ‘work’ of mine.

    The imagery jumps ahead a couple of years.

    I’m watching the little boy playing on a seesaw outside the house. The boy has straight blond hair like his mother, and big blue/green eyes. The name ‘Jack’ comes to mind. Again it appears dusty and warm out the front yard, this gives me the impression that the area where we lived got hot during the summer months.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2019
    KenJ, Jim78, Speedwell and 1 other person like this.
  4. Totoro

    Totoro Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2011
    Messages:
    254
    Likes Received:
    248
    Location:
    Tampa, Fl
    Maybe you were the one who posted it, or it must have been one of my military buddies on facebook..

    There was a former POW who was still living in Vietnam, despite having been declared dead and having remains shipped back to the US and buried. He was openly living as himself in Vietnam.

    I absolutely think these things happen, but it makes you wonder what's going on if 1. they convince them to give up their families and 2. they then later live openly as themselves.

    I'm impressed with your research! This is quite fascinating!
     
    Speedwell likes this.
  5. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    Totoro if you can post a link / recall the name I’d be very interested to know more.

    I’m still trying to figure out why all of the secrecy was necessary. Most likely there’s a combination of reasons. Those who were repatriated were working for the government, they needed to keep the issue buried (perhaps to avoid another war in South East Asia for one), the conditions for repatriation probably was to keep a lid on the issue—this meant no contact with family members. It was of benefit for both the US and Vietnamese governments to keep the whole thing quiet.

    I’ve read quite a few books on the issue now, as well as reading experiences of POW/MIA families and of researchers /politicians and the overwhelming evidence is that there were men left behind and it has been covered up.

    I’ll continue with my findings and memories as time allows.
     
  6. KenJ

    KenJ Assistant Archivist and Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2014
    Messages:
    1,565
    Likes Received:
    1,033
    Location:
    SW Ohio, USA
    Landsend, I just saw this today and thought you might like seeing it.
     

    Attached Files:

    • MIA.jpg
      MIA.jpg
      File size:
      235.8 KB
      Views:
      7
    fireflydancing and landsend like this.
  7. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    Thanks KenJ, that’s interesting — I’ll have to ask Terry’s son if he knows more about this. He was saying about filing another FOIA request himself to see if he can get more info on his dad’s case. I know that in the past when he and his family members have requested information the various agencies (think it was the DIA) have flat out denied knowledge of things that have been in their father’s file. At the moment I’m researching the defector mentioned in the Ba To sightings and have found some potentially interesting information that I’m looking in to.
     
  8. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    Some of you here may know that I'm currently going through some turbulent times.

    I was lying in bed yesterday, thinking about the parallels between mine and Terry's lives. There are quite a few, not exact replicas of situations, but parallels, and sometimes reversed roles. To name a few, we both married young within the catholic institution, had three children before the age of thirty, first child was born abroad whilst young (and naive). He was often away for work, leaving his wife alone. I've been often alone with my kids, while my other half has been off working.

    My relationship with my husband has been healthier, and we share responsibilities. We have strong friendship, and trust, which is the basis of our marriage. This was not the case with Terry and his wife.

    I've often wondered if, subconsciously, I made this situation out of guilt for my past actions. Lack of foresight and wisdom was definitely there, too.

    Things have pretty much taken a turn for the worse since turning twenty-eight last October. Terry deployed for his final tour to Vietnam shortly after turning twenty-eight in December 1968.

    Things on the home front weren't rosy. There was strain and cracks in his marriage. It was with sadness, and darkness that he left his house for that final time.

    My marriage is currently suffering to the point I don't know if it will survive. I'm at a crossroads, at the point in my life where something important is about to happen. I have an appointment with my doctor on March 6 to discuss if she would be willing to put me on the pathway to start taking testosterone. I'm conflicted whether to go down this pathway, even if my body is saying 'yes'. My mind is telling me it will be the end of my marriage.

    Terry was shot down in his Cobra gunship March 6, 1969. That was the critical turning point in his life. It's now 2019. Exactly 50 years ago.

    He would spend the next portion of his life in torturous conditions, suffering in isolation. I've spent much of my life in isolation, things have been very inward. Considering the mirror effect between me and Terry, it may be that the next portion of my life will be more outward looking.

    One rare morning when I could wake up slow without kids charging in, several images danced through my mind. One of them involves myself as Terry, visiting a chapel in a vulnerable moment. I won't detail here the exact reason for the visit to the chapel, as it details something personal that I'm not entirely comfortable with sharing in this moment. But I do want to share with you the chaplains advice to me back then.

    16 Feb 19
    2nd Vision

    See a church aisle, it's more like a small chapel than a church. It's dark, and empty but for the priest or chaplain who stands near the altar.

    I'm walking up the aisle, wearing my service uniform, and holding between in hands my beret. I can feel myself twisting the beret between my hands, feeling the wool material and the curve. Despite being empty, the church is imposing. Fear engulfs me.

    Now I have an impression of a conversation, between myself and the chaplain. He was an older man, grey hair, about 40-50 years old and pragmatic. I asked the man to talk to me with the strictest confidence--perhaps military strict type confidence. After finishing telling him, the priest sat next to me and reflected on my confession.

    He told me something along these lines in return:
    'Stop blaming God for this, you need to take the matter into your own hands. God is not to blame. He hasn't got to solve this -- you have.'

    I recall my feelings whilst there -- very lost, confused, in a world of pain. I did not like letting my guard down, but needed to. The weight I was carrying on my shoulders was too much.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2019
    tanker likes this.
  9. Totoro

    Totoro Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2011
    Messages:
    254
    Likes Received:
    248
    Location:
    Tampa, Fl
    LandsEnd, sorry to now just get back to you!

    I don't recall the person's name.. I'm sorry :( It was one of those links that open within facebook, so you never see the website or address either.

    http://boredomtherapy.com/vietnam-pow-found/

    This is a similar story though.. however the man I read about looked like missing soldier and spoke English, while this one was a fraud. However, the article is interesting because it says how SOG soldiers had no identification etc as they were in sovereign countries without permission. They were probably disavowed as well, so it's quite possible if somehow they lost contact etc, they became rogue citizens, as the US wouldn't acknowledge them, rather than admit guilt and it was easier to classify them MIA or KIA. I think it's all quite in alignment with your research.

    So you're in contact with Terry's son? How did you approach that? I was watching over a warrant officer in Vietnam and I was able to find his family online but they wouldn't talk to me. I feel it's best to be gentle about these things, but that was my only attempt and opportunity.
     
    landsend likes this.
  10. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    I've read about that guy before, and I do know about SOG mission being highly secretive. Folks went with no identification and their missions were not recorded. Often they were sheep dipped. I have a book about SOG that I'm meaning to read. There's still some information I want to understand from my own memories before researching further.

    I approached Terry's son/family with extreme caution, and after much deliberation. If his son did not have a website detailing his dad's MIA case, I'm not sure if I would have reached out. At least I would have been more reluctant. Either way, I approached with the research I'd found from various newspapers, and then, after some time, told him about the 'dream' I had of his mom and dad's wedding, including all the finer details, such as his mother being pregnant at the time of the wedding. From there, we were able to discuss other details I knew about his childhood and his father. We still chat now and then about his dad's case and any findings I have. One day I'd like to meet him/his family, but leaving the ball in his court. Not sure it'll ever happen.

    I understand folks reluctance to talk about those times. Vietnam still feels very painful.
     
    glia21 likes this.
  11. Totoro

    Totoro Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2011
    Messages:
    254
    Likes Received:
    248
    Location:
    Tampa, Fl
    Ah, I see, so you already had an "in". I didn't, other than an angle about being a writer, I had really no reason to want to talk to them and I wouldn't blame people for not wanting to open up about it. I had the same goals as you though, to verify some things I knew or thought.

    I think this guy in particular is an in and out-er. I think it was in Newton's books, he describes a thrill seeking time that jumps in and out of lives really quickly. Doing a search for him, I recently found another solider who died in Iraq, with the same name (first, middle last) that bears a resemblances along with some personality as well and I wouldn't be surprised if it was him!

    I'm happy though an "in" presented itself and it worked out for you :)
     
  12. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    I wrote this reflection on the 50th anniversary of Terry going MIA.
    ---


    When the Flowers Bloom

    March 6, 2019. I’m twenty-eight years old and five months. Flowers blooming, the camellia in my garden swells open, Oriental pink petals with buttery gold threads. Mandalas. Light seeps through them. Days don’t seem real that I am here, two daughters and a son birthed from my body. Hanging out washing, blowing bubbles, pushing the girls on the swing, taking photos with a phone. Feeling a sad happiness, that wants to be elsewhere.

    My stomach cramps up, back aches. Feel old, worn. Nothing comes. Day is full of demands, cleaning crap from diapers, spills off the floor. Same old. Soaked head to toe in weird yellow weather, it soaks the crap out of me, Vietnamese style. It’s warm, not cold. Not British. Tropical almost. Canned soup, and instant coffee doesn’t take off its edge.

    Am sitting writing wearing a duck hunter cowboy hat, dated 1969, bought it off a guy who bought it off a Nam Veteran who kept it in storage all these years. After all, it’s big enough to fit a dink's head, which means it’s big enough to fit ol’ Gray’s head. My head is going grey, now, too. At twenty eight I’ve got a chiselled frown, and enough grey hairs to notice. A lifetime of sorrow coming out in three years will do that to ya. But they say it’s genetics.

    Today’s the day that Terry went missing, fifty years ago, twenty eight years old and three months. In this warm rainy weather, can’t help but think of him. Since it turned March, he’s been there every day. Hear him in the police choppers flying low over my house, the rotary blades roaring along the rooftops. Searching for something.

    I close my eyes. Hear a man, every time I close my eyes in a quiet moment, it’s the same. Hear him crying. Never heard a desperate sound like that before. But no tears break. These are the crying sounds of a man that never cried, and couldn’t. The broken sounds of a man who wouldn’t be broke.

    He’s hanging on for something. For what? Sharpened bamboo stakes, straight through the shoulder blade flesh, holding him up – for what?

    I see it, frantic scenes, running through his house, looking for– what is he looking for in the heat of that desperate anger, and fear? His wife is crying, telling him to stop. The boy, what did the boy do? Can’t see it, won’t see it. Feel my head shake, NO! No, no. Myself, I’m hyperventilating, can’t breathe. Won’t see it, can’t see it. Can’t break. Wake up. My husband lying next to me tells me that he could feel the darkness coming from me. It’s the sort of darkness that kills people, y'know.

    He tells me we need help. We need help, but who is there to help? An old Hip-pie friend sends him a message in that moment, how are we doing? It’s almost comical, but no one is laughing.

    Standing over my toilet, I hold a silicone device that looks comical, a comical caricature of the real deal. It makes me feel like a man if I squint, and watch myself standing and doing what should be natural. (But it’s no more natural than a silicone breast.) I squeeze it, and the last drops of piss fall from the end. Do up my zipper, flush it away.

    I hear the same words repeating. Dark days, doors closing. He was never found. We did not have enough evidence. To declare. Him. Dead.

    Is he dead? Does he live on in me? Truly? Does this prove it? My legs, they are curled under me, foetal position. The only comfort I have, curled up with an aching back, and a cramping stomach. Less a man, not a woman, more a thing. Kids always demanding in the background.

    But still, the flowers bloom, and I see them. I miss them, and they have no idea. How much I loved them. Thought of them. Still do.

    IMG_4418.jpg
     
  13. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    PART SIXTEEN – II The Haystack Broadens

    It’s a strong feeling of mine that, while in captivity, John dreamed of what his life would be like if he ever got out. This of course would have been essential for his sanity in the long periods where he was shackled up in darkness. One of the things he dreamt about was of owning a ranch in his native Texas, perhaps having some cattle and a couple of horses.

    The imagery that has appeared to me during meditations seems to indicate that this is indeed what he pursued after repatriation, minus the Texas location. I find it very doubtful that he would have been allowed to relocate to Texas, considering his family were still in and around that area. It was too obvious, too risky. Investigating witness protection programs confirmed this line of thinking. He would’ve been located somewhere no one would imagine he would be.

    It’s clear to me that the ranch he owned was somewhere in a mid-west type setting. I have seen him driving along a very flat landscape, with big skies, long roads; it’s sparsely populated with warm, dry summers. Conversely, I’ve seen him hanging out in a mountainous setting with a dog, fishing, sharpening a knife on a stone in a river. He looked very much like a hobo in that vision – I do not know when that occurred. It could have been prior, or long after the ranch purchase.

    I still do not know where he was, or rather, where the ranch was. I’ve tried my hand at dowsing. The results were inconclusive. I’ve asked in dreams. Again, no answer. But I know the ranch is there. I know it is real. My recollection of the ranch is as vivid, if not more vivid than my recollection of his house in Texas – the house he owned with his first wife. And I’ve been able to confirm aspects I knew of that house in Texas, thanks to Terry's family. But the aspects I knew, were aspects that only Terry would know – such as how the lighting of that house was affected by the brown wood cladding on the walls, how warm and stuffy it got in summer, how dark it was due to the blinds being drawn to block out the sun. The open plan kitchen/diner. How I entered the house – through the side – parking my car on the curb after being too drunk to attempt the driveway. Sneaking through the side door to hide my guilt. How the house was -- one story, small, house was on a very very slight gradient, long drive, houses in street looked similar, grass outside, etc.

    I recall all that of the house in Texas, but did not recall the exact street location, nor the name of the street despite looking at maps. It wasn’t until Terry’s son pointed out the address for me that I could see it on Google Maps. I did find a house that looked –very- similar based on an address I found whilst Googling, but it was not the right house.

    Screen shot 2019-03-26 at 11.30.00.png Screen shot 2019-03-26 at 11.27.27.png Screen shot 2019-03-26 at 11.27.35.png
    photo of the ‘wrong’ house crappy 5 second sketch photo of the real house


    I realise that the ‘wrong’ house does not match my crappy sketch (which was made very quickly prior to first speaking to Terry's son sometime in July 2017), but the real house does match more – notably the location of the driveway/grass area. I did, however, note that the kitchen was on the right side of the building when in fact it was on the left side of the building. Perhaps you could get to the back yard from either side of the building -- that might account for me seeing myself going down the right side. I remember saying to Terry's son that I didn't recall the tree at all, or at least it wasn't that big out on the front yard. He agrees with me that it was never that big when they were young, and that it may have been planted after his dad went MIA.. It certainly was not prominent like you can see now on Google Street view.

    Despite accuracies, there is a serious fault in my previous life memory recall. I can remember broad details, but struggle with name places, finer details. At times I’ve likened it to being Jason Bourne from those novels. He wakes up and doesn’t have a clue who he is, and recalls snippets along the way, but he has strong urges, strong feelings and follows these clues to the next clue, and so on. Just like when I kept hearing Terry as ‘Jerry’, my subconscious merging John with Terry. Occasionally I’ll have a Eureka breakthrough, and a very vivid detail will strike me (such as knowing the last name of Brownie), but otherwise I have puzzle pieces, or symbolic memory and have to put together the fragments or decipher the code.

    This all makes locating the exact position of Terry’s ranch incredibly difficult. Welcome back to the Giant Haystack.
     
  14. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    On Sep 7, 2018, more details came to me:

    I’m working on my pickup, looking at the engine under the hood (bonnet). I’m wearing overalls, and holding a rag. Can see that the area surrounding me is open, flat.

    Then on Sep 11:

    I enter the house via front door. Enter into open plan living area. Lounge on front with stairs leading to the upper floor. Kitchen diner at the back.

    On Sep 16, another vision of the ranch:

    I’m at the ranch where I am living now. It’s a little ranch type house, wooden, in the middle of nowhere. We have a couple of horses and some cattle. I see a brown horse, a mare and a stud and a couple of colts.

    It’s a bright, sunny day and I come into the house through a back door to the kitchen area. My wife is standing there, cleaning or cooking. She asks me if I want a drink. My sleeves are rolled up, and I have dirt on my hands as if I had been working outside.

    On the 20 September, yet more snippets:

    I can see my boy wearing a red/blue check shirt and dungarees. He’s reaching up to get something off the table. He has brown/blonde hair. Rosy cheeks, big smile. There’s a grey dog. Looks like I’m kneeling down, fixing something.

    Now I appear to be chopping wood outside the house, there was a wood heater inside the house. The house was basic, it was isolated and had limited facilities.

    I hear my wife calling me something similar to ‘Terry’.

    More details of the house:

    Outside the house on the roof there’s a weather vane, a metal cockerel. The house has a small porch outside, a wooden deck, maybe a step up to the house.

    On 27 Oct 18, I saw aspects of the main bedroom:

    I’m in the main bedroom. It has a sloping roof, a small low window, wooden beams that were exposed, dark. The room is very simple. There’s a double bed with white sheets. I go to the low window and look through. Can see the yard. There’s a small barn with large painted bottle green doors.
     
  15. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    As idyllic as it all sounds, I’ve seen things that show me it aint no Little House on the Prairie. Terry had problems following all he had been through. Drink had been a problem prior to his POW experiences. Drink, once again, became his only solace.

    This imagery has repeated since before I knew of Terry’s repatriation memories. There I was, at a desk, deeply troubled by something.

    11 Sep 18

    I’m sitting at a desk, looking at some papers, or documents. Have a cigarette poised between my fingers, there’s an empty whiskey bottle on the desk. I’m sobbing uncontrollably, dry heaving sobs. Can’t stand to cry, and cover my face with my arm.

    I’m so drunk that I lose consciousness. See myself ‘out-of-body’. My wife is at the door. She runs to my inert body, which is slumped over the desk, my hand limp over the edge. I see her fumbling to find my pulse at my wrist with a look of terror sheer on her face. She thinks I've killed myself.

    20 Sep 18

    There’s an impression of something that happened. I suffered a severe flashback. See myself holding my wife at the neck, I’m choking her. She’s looking at me, pleading with me.

    Didn’t even realise I was hurting her. I was just – gone. Didn't even know where I was. She’s trying to ask me what I’m doing, or trying to say my name. Maybe she says it. Don’t know. Something brings me back to ‘now’, and I realise in horror what I’m doing.

    I rush out the house, get in the car and drive off.


    On Oct 10, more details of the drink problem:

    I’m having a heated conversation with my wife, something along the lines of her accusing me of staying up all night drinking. She tells me something along the lines that I should get some rest, that the drinking had to stop, and that she didn’t want to bury another husband. She pretty much tells me that she couldn’t bear to lose someone else like that.

    I don’t take too kindly to being told what to do. Am very angry. Grab my jacket, and a hunting rifle and leave the house.

    It seems his second wife also had her fair share of problems. A reoccurring image is of going with her to visit the grave of her deceased husband in what appears to be a military grave. This is a major lead. If it turns out that her husband died during the Vietnam War, his details will be out there somewhere. That makes her, and her family traceable. Trouble is, I only have fragments of a name (or similar sounding name) to go by and so far I’ve not been able to find him. If he died after the war, then it will be a lot harder to find him. His name wont be on the memorial in Washington D.C.

    It first appeared to me on Sep 11, 2018:

    I’m walking with a woman, my wife. I’m wearing a suede jacket, a cap, jeans and boots. My hair comes around the back of my neck. I’m thin. There’s an impression of a patch sewed on the arm of my jacket.

    Have my hands in my pockets, my wife is holding on to the crook of my arm. We appear to be visiting a sort of memorial for veterans, which was also a cemetery. My wife convinced me to come along.

    My wife is wearing a white dress, a summer/spring type dress. She has in her free hand some flowers. There are rows of white coloured grave stones amongst the grass.


    I see her putting the flowers on a grave. I’m on the pathway, a respectable distance away. Feel great discomfort at being here, like I shouldn’t be here, don’t want to be here. I look away as she stands near the grave.

    Try to focus on the name engraved on the grave, but the words are jumbled, can’t see clearly. There is a capital ‘E’ and a g in the name, perhaps the last name.

    My wife is drying her eyes with a tissue. Again, I look away. Don’t want to be here. Being here with all these war graves makes me very uncomfortable.

    Finally, there is an impression of seeing the raising of an American flag on a pole. Soldiers dressed for ceremony are saluting, and cannons going off. Unsure of timeframe for this, or if it was during the grave visit.
     
    Kenz1010 likes this.
  16. Totoro

    Totoro Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2011
    Messages:
    254
    Likes Received:
    248
    Location:
    Tampa, Fl
    landsend, do you have a problem with alcohol or substance abuse now?

    I'm curious about what you've experienced, if so. Both of my past lives had substance abuse issues that stem mostly from my ADD. In this life too, I had a drinking problem and addictive tendencies that I've gotten over and I'm now looking at ADD medication.

    Depending on which life you look at, my substance abuse was either applauded or ridiculed. For me, it's a constant source of shame, even though no one knew what ADD was until now, I still can't help but feel bad over the way I've acted and treated myself.
     
  17. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    Totoro, sorry to hear you've had problems with drink, too.

    I don't have a problem with alcohol or substances now. It seems to be about the only problem I don't suffer with in this life. Jokes aside, I've had a healthy respect for drink, and an aversion, even a fear to it throughout this life. My estranged granddad was an angry, abusive drunk, so maybe it was drilled into me as a kid not to overindulge. Either way, if I over drink it makes me ill so I don't tend to drink. If I drink when I'm angry, it makes me more angry so I try to avoid it to escape. I'm practically T-total in this life apart from the occasional beverage. Feels good to drink for pleasure, not for pain.

    As for substances, the only time I did soft drugs (marijuana), it caused me to open to my more horrific past life memories. I'm not doing that again any time soon.

    Really I think my aversion to this stuff stems from Terry. Don't want to go back to those times.

    But, despite this, I'd say I have an addictive personality. Not to drugs, but to other things. I also have mild obsessive compulsive behaviour that flares up when I'm stressed. I'd say that was interrelated.
     
  18. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    Beyond the Veil

    One of the unexpected parts of recalling the life subsequent to this one is the recall of connections, family connections for the most part.

    Terry's brother. Today is in fact his birthday.

    Where to begin with this one?

    Back in 2004, I remember buying Jack Johnson’s album ‘In Between Dreams’. No reason why. It wasn’t the music I typically listened to back then. I was at the peak of my angsty teenage years and was into punk rock and grunge. Not exactly cheerful music.

    Around this time sitting in the living room either with my Sony Walkman (yeh, I’m that old), or perhaps it was on the stereo system -- either way sitting and listening to Mr. Johnson strum his ukulele and sing in his soft lullaby voice, I was overcome with an acute lonesome feeling. Another time it happened on a long car trip while the CD played in the car. That very same feeling.

    How can I describe it? It was like a longing to go somewhere. I missed something very dearly, maybe it was Hawaii. Maybe it was something in Hawaii. Or someone. All this was confusing at best to a pimply angsty kid who lived in the Middle of Industrial England. Actually, maybe it’s not so hard to imagine why I’d dream of ‘Paradise’ whatever that was. But this was something more. I recall that it brought tears to me thinking on the longing to be there in Hawaii.

    I wanted to go there, but had no real reason why. I mean, why not Fiji? The Maldives? Hell, the Canary Islands are closer and easier to get to from where I am. Why there? Was Mr. Johnson’s dulcet tones just too much for that overly hormonal teen to bare?

    Around this time, my dad, who often frequents the Sunday ‘Car Boot’* that we have over here bought back some trinkets. He gave two to me, one which was an overly ‘happy’ fertility symbol (three kids later, thanks dad) -- and the other is one I have kept with me all these years and now sits on my desk -- a CocoJoe’s Hapa Wood ‘Long Life Tiki’. Made with ALOHA in Hawaii.

    IMG_0731.jpg IMG_0734.JPG

    Sure, it’s tourist trash and throwaway material (if it really granted long life, who’d sell it?) but I kept that little fella on my shelf for years. Moved countries, moved house a handful of times and ended up back at Square One. Lo and behold, found him in a box in the attic. Down Mr. Tiki Long Life came again and landed on my desk.

    Fast forwards around twelve years to 2016 when I began to recall Terry’s memories. The knowledge that I had a brother back then pretty much dropped into my head. I saw him associated either with the Navy, or Marines. The boat aspect stood out to me, and one of the first things I recall about him is one of those huge ships out in the ocean, the aircraft carriers. There was something about him, too. Jealousy, perhaps? Definitely an unsaid jealousy. There was a lot of competitiveness between us either way.

    When I recalled Terry’s wedding day, he was there. He was my best man. Again, that was a knowledge that dropped into my head as fact. I could see my best man, he’s my brother -- and he’s in the Navy -- I see him wearing his fancy navy suit with the brass buttons. Now whether he did wear the Naval dress clothes or not is another thing, but think my subconscious wanted to illustrate a point (more on that topic another day).

    It kinda miffed me he looked far more handsome than myself on my own wedding day (but wouldn’t have let him know that). He had very vivid blue eyes, brown hair. The ladies loved him.

    In my research, I found an article in the digital newspaper archives that confirmed Terry's brother was his bestman. I found his name. Sometime later I found an obituary for Terry’s mother who passed on in 1961. From there I could see the obit stated she had two sons, one (Terry) serving in the US Army, the other in the Navy, Pacific Fleet.

    Some time later, on an ancestry website, I found the date of his Terry’s brother’s death. He died in his 50’s in 2004. The cause of his death was not written. But the place? Hawaii.

    (TBC)



    *A carboot is the quintessentially British past time of buying other people's trash from their car boots in a muddy disused field, usually in the early hours of Sunday morn.

    ** for my American cousins car boot=the trunk of car
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
    glia21, Li-la and tanker like this.
  19. SeaAndSky

    SeaAndSky Senior Registered

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2014
    Messages:
    984
    Likes Received:
    701
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    Hi Landsend,

    I thought this quote and article might be interesting to you:

    William Gladstone, a British prime minister during the 19th century, offered a timeless formula: “Show me the manner in which a nation or community cares for its dead, and I will measure with mathematical exactness the tender sympathies of its people, their respect for the law of the land and their loyalty to high ideals.”

    The article: https://news.yahoo.com/jim-webb-remember-south-vietnam-100011883.html

    Cordially,
    S&S
     
    tanker, landsend and Li-la like this.
  20. landsend

    landsend Senior Registered

    Joined:
    May 22, 2017
    Messages:
    623
    Likes Received:
    841
    Thanks for posting that article, S&S. Glad those men are finally being put to rest.
     

Share This Page