Tag Archives: Virginia War Memorial

Remembering Phyllis Galanti on her birthday … quiet POW crusader

[Today would have been Richmonder Phyllis Galanti’s 75th birthday. This gallant woman who passed away in April of 2014 was remembered today by her husband, Paul, in a loving tribute on his Facebook page.  I decided to rerun this post written when learning of her death. At the time, Commander Galanti left a comment that read:

“Lynn, Thank you for this blog post. I think it is the finest of many articles about my wife, Phyllis. Her memorial service on April 29, 2014, at First Presbyterian Church in Richmond was the largest such gathering I’ve seen in Richmond. And that was despite the deluge that flooded the city and environs. Phyllis would have been gratified to have been there. She will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery at 1:00 PM on Tuesday, September 2, 2014. – Paul Galanti, Commander, U.S. Navy (Retired)”]

Paul Galanti 1

“Lonely the days and nights, my love, that we have been apart. It seems almost forever since I held you to my heart. The moments are as restless as the waves that move the sea, but every second means a step nearer, my love, to thee.”
—POW Paul Galanti’s words to wife Phyllis after his release as a POW during theVietnam War, a poem he had shared with her before they married.

Phyllis Galanti burst onto the world stage when her husband, Paul Galanti, a Navy fighter pilot shot down over Hanoi in 1966, became a prisoner of war during the Vietnam War. She had never wanted to be in the spotlight, this quiet and unassuming lady, but in 1971, five years after her husband’s capture and imprisonment at the infamous “Hanoi Hilton,” she took her battle to have him released to the people of Virginia, America, and the world, and became a national celebrity.

Sometimes the quiet reluctant ones are the chosen leaders. That was Phyllis Galanti.

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Vietnamese community commemorates 40th anniversary of Fall of Saigon at Va War Memorial

Tony Pham 3By Tony Pham
Guest Post

Tony Pham 2On April 26th there will be an event at the Virginia War Memorial with the Vietnamese community. We will be remembering the fall of Saigon and the sacrifices of the many Marines, Soldiers, Airmen, Sailors, and our patriots who fought for the Republic of South Vietnam. It will be an emotional day for sure.

However, while I honor, I will also remember how blessed we were by God’s grace, 40 years ago, to have made it to the land of freedom and opportunity. I see my parents’ faces light up with pride when they talk about how I am running for public office. Enduring sacrifice, heartache, and struggle went into building the young man who seeks to serve the very community which provided us our start in America.

To each and every single one of you, good or bad, THANK YOU for being a part of this journey. Thank you for welcoming our Phamily 40 years ago and helping us.

It is now my turn to return the favor and “reignite the promise of America!”

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On this day in 1945 … the final hours of Clarence Osborne, U.S. Army

??????????By Lynn R. Mitchell

On this day in 1945, the uncle I never knew was killed in Europe just six weeks before the end of World War II. He was my mother’s oldest brother. She was a student at Thomas Dale High School in Chester, Virginia, when her brother Clarence, the oldest of nine siblings, died. She still remembers her mother’s reaction that fateful day when the official government car drove up the driveway of their Chesterfield County farm many decades ago, and how her mother’s knees buckled as she realized the presence of that car meant her son had been killed. Mom says her mother, who lived into her 80s, never completely got over the loss.

After retiring, Mom spent hours researching to fill the void of not knowing exactly what happened to her brother and eventually found Clarence’s sergeant, Dock Roberts, living in Texas. Another soldier buddy, Emelio Albert, lived in California. She traveled to both places to talk with them to learn about her brother’s journey as a U.S. Army soldier through war-torn Europe and his final hours, and she documented the treasured research for our family history.

Italian Campaign
The Italian Campaign was one of the most difficult of World War II, and some of the most difficult battles for foot soldiers were in Italy which was very mountainous with heavy snows in the winter of 1943 and heavy cold rains in the late winter and spring of 1944. The earth turned into a quagmire and foxholes were filled with water. Mud was so deep it was nearly impassable for vehicles as well as men on foot. In the summer of 1944, the ground turned to dust which swirled at the least disturbance. The unit veterans’ most vivid memories of the Italian fighting was the weather and terrain.

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George Allen: ‘International trade is at the heart of Virginia’s economy’

George Allen 52By Lynn R. Mitchell

Former Governor and U.S. Senator George Allen gets it. America needs jobs and economic growth, and voters are concerned about the lack of both.

In Sunday’s Richmond Times-Dispatch, Governor Allen authored an op-ed about that very issue, a recurring concern of his throughout the years (see Allen: International trade at the heart of Virginia’s economy). He wrote:

A clear message from last month’s elections is that Americans are anxious about the economy. In fact, a look at the Virginia exit polls shows that the economy was the leading issue among half of all voters.

Members of Congress are now deliberating legislation on funding for the rest of the fiscal year — through September 2015 — that has the potential to boost economic growth. As they do, it will be important for them to view investments in international engagement as a way to promote our economic interests around the world and to create jobs at home.

As a longtime champion of Virginia’s economy, I’ve seen firsthand how our economic fate is tied directly to actions and markets around the world.
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Richmonder Phyllis Galanti … quiet POW crusader passes away, leaves legacy

Paul Galanti 1By Lynn R. Mitchell

“Lonely the days and nights, my love, that we have been apart. It seems almost forever since I held you to my heart. The moments are as restless as the waves that move the sea, but every second means a step nearer, my love, to thee.”

— POW Paul Galanti’s words to wife Phyllis after his release as a POW during Vietnam War, a poem he had shared with her before they married

Phyllis Galanti burst onto the world stage when her husband, Paul Galanti, a Navy fighter pilot shot down over Hanoi in 1966, became a prisoner of war during the Vietnam War. She had never wanted to be in the spotlight, this quiet and unassuming lady, but in 1971, five years after her husband’s capture and imprisonment at the infamous “Hanoi Hilton,” she took her battle to have him released to the people of Virginia, America, and the world, and became a national celebrity.

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