In 1968, 80 young men from Washington state stood in their white shirts and thin black ties in the echoing state Capitol and listened to then-Gov. Dan Evans praise them, the Marine Corps’ new “Evergreen State Platoon.”
By evening, they were on their way to boot camp in California. Many ended up in Vietnam.
On Saturday, 40 years to the day from that hot summer afternoon, about two dozen of the men returned to the Capitol to rekindle old ties and pay their respects to those who never came home.
The men, some with their wives, gathered Saturday afternoon at the state’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial, where the names of Washington’s war dead are carved into a stone wall. Half a dozen of the names belonged to platoon members.
Here’s a slide show with photos from 1968 and today.