A Minnesota PBS Initiative

Everywhere We Went, We Walked

Willie Pargo joined the Marine Corps as part of the Delayed Entry Program while he was still in high school. Six months after joining, he was sent to Vietnam, and he was shocked to learn how different Vietnam was. Upon coming home, Willie turned to alcohol to self-medicate and treat what would later be diagnosed as PTSD. Now, he urges all veterans to take advantage of social services for treatments, saying "veterans make America great."

You have to wake up and decide what you're going to do. Are you gonna live as a casualty for the rest of your life, or are you gonna cast that cloak off and live?

Willie's story was captured with the help of TPT's Minnesota Remembers Vietnam team.

Biographical Details

Primary Location During Vietnam: Marble Mountains, Vietnam Vietnam location marker

Story Subject: Military Service

Military Branch: U.S. Marine Corps

Dates of Service: 1966 - 1969

Veteran Organization: Military Order of the Purple Heart

Story Themes: Addiction, African American, Bloomington Picnic, Boot Camp, Brooklyn Park, Combat, Coming Home, Da Nang, Delayed Entry Program, Drugs and Alcohol, First Impressions, Marble Mountains, PTSD, Terrain, The VA, Watch, Willie Pargo

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