Called to Serve: Draftees’ Stories from the Vietnam War
Tom Weiner – retired schoolteacher
Friday, February 24, 12:15PM
Strong House, 67 Amity Street, Amherst
The Vietnam War ended more than 40 years ago, but its effects are still being felt. Tom Weiner, recently retired after teaching for 40 years at the Smith College Campus School, will talk about his book, Called to Serve: Stories of Men and Women Confronted by the Vietnam War Draft. He interviewed 62 people around Pioneer Valley who shared with him their decisions about how they responded to the draft and the circumstances and back stories behind the choices they made.
It is the only book that presents all of the possible options for those drafted including from serving to resisting, from leaving the country to being a conscientious objector, to “beating the draft” with a high lottery number. This book focuses on 32 stories of men and women whose lives the draft directly impacted.
The book was subsequently adapted into “The Draft,” a play by prize-winning playwright Peter Snoad. It premiered in Boston and was performed at the Academy of Music in September 2015. Tom’s dual purpose in writing the book was to preserve these gripping, emotional stories and to aid in the healing process that still is taking place 40 years after the fall of Saigon.
Join us with your lunch in hand. We will provide coffee, tea and cider for you as you listen to the presentations. The 30-minute program will begin promptly at 12:15 with seating and beverages ready just before noon. The lectures are free and everyone is welcome to attend.
March 10: Kitty Burns Florey, Amity Street
March 24: Susan Snively, The Heart has Many Doors
April 7: Richard Cairn, Primary Sources, A Hands on Lecture
April 21: George Naughton, From Arkham to Amherst: HP Lovecraft and New England Folklore
May 5: To Be Announced