Terry B. Burkett
My brother Lt. Col. Kenneth Burkett served on an Army advisory team in Pleiku in the Central Highlands of South Vietnam in 1969-70. While he is not a Texas Vietnam veteran, he is one of my heroes and was an inspiration to me and my service in the U.S. Navy.
Ken was a member of the Iowa National Guard and in 1968 was called to active duty to serve specifically in Vietnam. As he always did, Ken served God, his family, and his country when it called.
In October 1969 Ken spent a five day R&R with me and my fellow crewmen in Cam Ranh Bay, SVN where we were flying Operation Market Time combat air patrols. A strange place for two brothers to meet and an even stranger place for one of them to spend an R&R. I am sure it is not unlike other stories of brothers that met in that far away place and were thrown into the hell that became Vietnam.
Ken and I both proudly served our country and the people of SVN and when the time came we returned home safely to our families and our lives after Nam. So many others did not return and it is fitting that we never forget the honor and courage of all those that served.
Soon after Ken returned home to his family and business he retired from the U.S. Army. He continued to support his family and his community until his untimely death in a farming accident in 1997. His life was and is an everlasting inspiration to me.