May 27, 2016
The eventful life of Sammy Lee Davis takes yet another interesting turn next month when he does what tens of thousands of other Vietnam veterans have done: He will return to Vietnam.
"June 12," Davis said, "will be the first time I've been there since '68."
Davis' specific destination is Cai Lay, in the southern end of the country. There, on Nov. 18, 1967, he did something for which he received praise and glory but for which he also endured years of nightmares and inner turmoil.
"I don't know if 'closure' is the right word for it," Davis, 69, said. "I've learned you're not supposed to forget. You're supposed to remember. Your memories are like tools. You can use them to fix your life."
He had not been drafted into the Army. He had enlisted. Eighteen months after graduating from Mooresville High School he signed up.
About 270,000 Vietnam veterans would later suffer from post traumatic stress disorder, according to a 2015 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Davis was among them.
"I did crazy things," he said, declining to elaborate. Said his wife, Dixie: "Sammy still has moments."
read more here
At an event with the Orlando Nam Knights, Sammy was the Guest of Honor and in this video, Sammy talks about what it was like coming home. It was a story I had not heard before. His Medal of Honor Citation is being read in between so that you know what he did before he came home and mistreated at the airport after getting out of the hospital.
In this one, Sammy and Dixie talk about making peace with all of it and not forgetting it.