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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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CdA’s Freedom Tree to be removed during park renovation

A Norway spruce in a Coeur d’Alene park chosen to honor a Vietnam War prisoner 40 years ago will be cut down. The Freedom Tree, as it’s known, will be removed soon to make way for a new parking structure in a $20 million makeover at McEuen Park downtown.

Reserve deputy justified in fatal shooting

The Stevens County prosecutor won’t charge a reserve deputy who shot and killed a man in October at his rural home located between Valley and Springdale, Wash. John E. Peterson, who was 65, aimed his gun at reserve Deputy Nick Wolfe, who then fired one round that killed Peterson, a Vietnam War veteran.

Hanoi opens 3 new areas in search for MIAs

The Vietnamese government on Monday agreed to open three new sites in the country for excavation by the United States to search for troop remains from the war, the minister of defense told U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta during a meeting here.

Vietnam vets thanked for service — unlike in the ‘70s

Twice during a Veterans Day event Friday at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, friends called to thank Bob Poe for his service — a far different greeting than in the years immediately following the Vietnam War. "The thing we never heard was, 'Thank you for your service,' " fellow Vietnam vet Bob Hamilton said. "We didn't get that when we came back," Poe said.

Spin Control: Honoring all Vietnam vets seems decent thing to do

OLYMPIA – It’s never really clear whether coincidence or fate juxtaposes certain events, but there was a peculiar one here last week. For those who didn’t notice, Friday was the 10th anniversary of the start of the war in Afghanistan. It’s a milestone that was mostly honored in its breach; perhaps the 20th will be a bigger deal if the United States is actually out of Afghanistan.

Vietnam memorials adding photos

OLYMPIA – If you have a photo of Air Force Col. Gallileo Bossio, of Deer Park, of Marine Pvt. 1st Class Rocky Hanna, of Addy, of Army Pvt. 1st Class Melvin East, of Colfax, or of Navy Lt. Cmdr. Edwin Koenig, of Spokane, veterans officials from both Washingtons would like to hear from you. The same goes for photos of nearly 600 other Washington state service members killed in Vietnam, about half of all the state’s fatal casualties from that war.

When Heaven & Earth changed places

The word “ecology” I discovered while working with Vietnamese, British and Canadian researchers in Vietnam was not incorporated into the languages of the people of Indochina until the 1990s.

Veterans at Vietnam memorial moving wall recall their losses

She was with some of those men whose names are on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial wall as they died, said Becky Branson, of Moscow, Idaho. But she can’t say who they were because there was never enough time to learn their names. Branson was a nurse at Chu Lai in Vietnam from 1969 to 1970. “We had a lot who lived,” she said. Medical care improved as the war progressed, but it was never enough.

43 years after rescue, pilots finally meet

MODESTO – Wayne Hague always wondered whatever happened to the pilot whose crippled plane he refueled and escorted to safety over North Vietnam in 1967. Ron Catton always wondered about that pilot who kept him from having to bail out of his F-4C Phantom fighter and right into a suite at the Hanoi Hilton.

Hmong gather for memorial service to honor revered leader

The Hmong community in Spokane is mourning the death of the man they view as the father of their people. They held a memorial service Saturday at the East Central Community Center for Gen. Vang Pao of the Royal Army of Laos, who led Hmong guerrillas in the CIA-backed fight against communists during the Vietnam War. Pao died Jan. 6 of pneumonia in Clovis, Calif. He was 81.

Hmong lose revered leader, 81

FRESNO, Calif. – Vang Pao, a fabled military hero and beloved father figure among the international Hmong refugee community, will be honored with a massive funeral “fit for a king” in central California, the general’s son said Friday. Vang Pao led Hmong guerrillas in their CIA-backed battle against communists during the Vietnam War. He died Thursday night in a hospital near Fresno after battling pneumonia he caught while presiding over two Hmong New Year celebrations in California’s agricultural belt. He was 81.

Monument to honor bravery of Spokane soldier and father

When Army Sgt. 1st Class Bruce A. Grandstaff volunteered for duty in Vietnam in 1966 he left his two young daughters behind. When he lost his life on May 18, 1967, in Pleiku Province, Vietnam, Grandstaff left not only a legacy of heroism for saving at least eight of his men and giving warning to other platoons, he also left personal legacy of bravery for his children. “He was the primary caretaker for my sister and I,” said Grandstaff’s daughter Tami Grandstaff-Chamberlain, standing next to the new monument last week. “He had two little girls. It was a huge responsibility for him to be a father and a soldier at the same time.”