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THE VETERAN

Page 34
Download PDF of this full issue: v43n2.pdf (20 MB)

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Dear Greg: Letters From My Father

By Gregory Ross

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5 February, 1978 @ 2101-10th St., Berkeley "Dear Greg...First of all I really don't recall a disagreement with you in regards to Viet Nam. As a matter of fact, we really haven't discussed it too much; have we? Feel free to say what you want not only about the war but about a lot of other things; what I mean is simply that you are not a child any more and you should have no hesitation in relating your feelings...the only thing that's important is what you do with your own life, UNDERSTAND?...so think where you want to be when you are, say, my age[56]...think of how many roads I was on to get to the right one...some of the wrong ones was my doing and some weren't...Write soon. Love Dad"


16 July, 1978 @ 2101-10th St., Berkeley "Dear Greg...the four years you spent in the Navy; remember the brawls, broads and drunks forget why you did any of them but, never let the 'War Time' become important. We all did things that would not have been done under normal times...you've had over seven years since any problems because of Viet Nam or leaving home the 'The Good Little Boy'...we all had doubts and problems...the difference between me and the guy in the loony bin is I just remember the good times...so work on what's to come and get more out of life than you are, be more to life than you are and love more of life than you do...it's there Greg...I refuse to believe you have as many hangups and problems as you think...so lets find that ladder we all are expected to climb and climb it. Love, Dad"


28 July, 1979 @ 1543 Addison St., Berkeley "Dear Greg...Viet Nam is over. It was an evil and wasteful time of life; including wastes of lives. When it started I believed so much that tried to get involved some how and failed physical on teeth. I don't know if I just enjoyed running off to camp or was addicted to wars...and always had an invisible sob and wail for any fatality or hurt that went with the area...Then the wrongness of being in some rice paddy...with Death...I no longer owed my life to my country... after that I stopped having my nightmares of Pearl Harbor and Korea...I am not being morbid, I am trying to say, some times it takes a long time to find what way peace of mind is directed and all of a sudden compassions change and storms that have existed inside all your life suddenly are quelled and sort of peaceful... I'm only trying to say if you want it, contentment and pacification of what you want will come and when it does it is so much simpler than you could imagine. Love Dad"


2 April, 1980: Progress Notes Standard Form 509 [Rev. 11-77]: Initial Treatment Plan; Identifying Data: Name: Gregory Ross....Age 32...Birthdate 7-19-1947... Marital Status, Single...Occupation, Laborer...Last Employment, February, 1979...Probation Officer, None...Significant Other: Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Ross, 173 Laverack Ave, Depew, NY. Complaints Resulting in Admission: depressed and suicidal. Legal Status: voluntary. Admitting Date, 4/2/80. Valuables, None. Cash on Hand, $4.97 [$10 from Patients Funds]. Hospital Course: transferred to the Young Veteran's Program on 4/4/80 where he began an intensive program of group and individual psychotherapy and milieu therapy. Approved by, Fred Gusman, MSW, Program Director.


17 July, 1980 @ 3801 Miranda Ave Ward 324C1, V.A. Hospital, Palo Alto "Greg, enclosed find something I made myself [money]...hope things are looking up for you. Know this, I have faith that this time you'll work it out...I'm behind you and I really ain't a pusher or shover where you are concerned. Hope to hear from you soon. Love Dad."


15 January, 1981: Mr. Ross was hospitalized on Ward 324C1 of the Menlo Park Division of the Palo Alto Veterans Administration Hospital from 4/2/80 until 1/15/81. The Young Vets Program is an inpatient treatment program for young veterans, particularly Viet Nam combat veterans. Mr. Ross's diagnosis is: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Delayed Type...It was medically inadvisable for Mr. Ross to be employed or attend school...due to depression, apprehensiveness, intermittent suicidal ideas, insomnia and anxiety...this period he attended an intensive group therapy program...began a Vocational Rehabilitation Program. This letter is being written for the purpose of calculating an extension of his GI Bill Educational Benefits...Sincerely, Joseph R. Magliozzi, M.D. Staff Psychiatrist, Ward 324C1, Menlo Park Veterans Hospital.


5 January, 1982 @ 597 El Dorado Ave. #3, Oakland "Dear Greg...hope you can understand we won't be able to come to your wedding...don't have the money... Love Dad"


19 September, 1983 @ 597 El Dorado Ave. #3, Oakland "Dear Greg...coming to see you, your wife and my grandson... Love Dad"


Gregory Ross: Navy, the Gun Line off coast of Viet Nam with the 7th Fleet [1968-69].Graduate of a VA drug, alcohol and PTSD program [1980]; Acupuncturist, Detox specialty [since 1989], laid off [2011] published in "Veterans of War, Veterans of Peace."


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