Vietnam era soldiers who later served in HPD To be recognized at Union’s Nov. 3 meeting

Tom Kennedy

All Vietnam War veterans who went on to become Houston police officers will be specially recognized at the Union’s Nov. 3 general membership meeting.

The HPOU and Operation Lone Star laid out this special recognition as their part in the U. S. Department of Defense’s commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War. Honoring Vietnam veterans will continue to be a primary part of the special commemoration.

Operation Lone Star’s Jim Conley, also a veteran, told the Badge & Gun that he dares to say that most – if not all of HPD’s Vietnam War era veterans have likely retired. “I figure that the youngest of these veterans of the Vietnam War era would be aged 60 or 61 right now,” Conley said.

“We’re just trying to get out the word and plan to recognize Vietnam veterans whether they are current or retired officers. We have already recognized retired HPD officers from the Vietnam era but have also invited them to this November ceremony at HPOU.

“The chances they are still active on HPD is very slim,” Conley said, saying that he has not heard from any current officers who are Vietnam veterans since putting out the notification of the ceremony.

“Operation Lone Star also wants to make it clear that we want to include officers who served in the military service during the Vietnam War era even if they served someplace else besides inside Vietnam. No matter where they served, they did their duty.”

Conley (HPD Retired) said the event will be very similar to a ceremony at a recent meeting of the Houston Police Retired Officers Association “in which we recognized Vietnam and Vietnam Era veterans who are members.

“Each veteran received a t-shirt and a Vietnam Veteran lapel pin.”

Operation Lone Star-Texans Supporting Our Troops is a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to supporting our active-duty military personnel, veterans and their families.

“HPOU is our strongest supporter,” Conley said. “We requested the opportunity to thank the Board of Directors and the members for being there for Operation Lone Star and the veterans and military personnel we serve. We specifically asked for time at the November meeting because Veterans Day is Nov. 11 and we felt it to be the most appropriate time.

The Department of Defense is currently honoring all Vietnam and Vietnam Era veterans with a Commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War.

“These great veterans of the military service,” Conley said, “are receiving special recognition for their service during a difficult time in our country’s history.

“We will then honor our remaining veterans and each will also receive a “Proudly Served-Veteran” lapel pin.

“Due to the limited amount of lapel pins we will give only one to each veteran. Partners and/or HPD friends must be present to receive a lapel pin.”

Conley also added, “As a Vietnam veteran and the father of two veterans, I look forward to honoring our HPD veterans at the November meeting.”