WHAT: Days of Reckoning, Lives of Promise – commemorating a split-second decision 42 years ago that saved and changed the lives of thousands of Vietnamese, many of them your neighbors.
WHEN: Sept. 30th - Oct 1st from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. each day
WHERE: Veterans Museum, Balboa Park, San Diego
WHAT: San Diego premiere of the documentary “The Lucky Few” followed by first-hand accounts from those who were there
ALSO: Copies of the documentary will be made available. Large-scale replica of the USS Kirk, which led the rescue effort saving 30,000 lives, will be displayed.
Good deeds go unnoticed, heroic stories go untold and important events are sunk when people don’t care.
Let’s not make that happen to the USS Kirk, a piece of America now in the waters off Taiwan.
This ship, leased to that country after the Vietnam War, is more than a piece of metal. She is an unsung heroine that saved more than 30,000 lives after the fall of Saigon in April and May of 1975. But as the Taiwanese government awaits replacements from the U.S., this piece of history may be sunk far away from home.
We were not on that ship to witness the heartache of people losing their country, people being tossed out of helicopters to the deck of a ship, a baby dying, medics going among hundreds of small boats caring for injured and ill people – the drownings, the fear, the terror and the escape –all to insure the survival of 30,000 people uncertain of their destiny.
On Sept. 30th - Oct 1st of this year, at the Veterans Museum at Balboa Park in San Diego, this experience will be related by people who were there – people who made history – as the Asian Heritage Society hosts the San Diego premiere of the documentary “The Lucky Few,” about the largest humanitarian effort ever undertaken by the U.S. The movie will be emceed by Kirk skipper Capt. Paul Jacobs followed by panel discussions led by crew members and Vietnamese rescued during those last days who gained a fresh start and became an asset to America. Capt. Jacobs will have a large-scale replica of the Kirk, in all its detail, to refer to as the story is told, and discuss efforts to get the Kirk back home to America before she is scuttled. Students from area high schools are being invited to participate as part of a special history field trip.
Capt. Jacobs and some of the crew will also be available to autograph color photos of the USS Kirk replica .
You can help by underwriting this event with a tax-deductible donation of $500 or more. The money will be used to furnish transportation for Capt. Jacobs and some crew members and to support insurance, handling and transportation for the replica to San Diego, as well as coordinate the event. Underwriters will receive special recognition during the program, copies of the documentary “The Lucky Few” and the Asian Heritage Society’s historical narrative “Pho For The Soul.” Underwriters will also be acknowledged on screen, in the program and receive commendations from San Diego’s congressional delegation.
Underwriting support may be made out to the Asian Heritage Society, 2920 1st Ave. (G), San Diego 92103 or by going to Pay Pal here.
There have been and will be more wars. But in each war, there is a moment that can change the course of history and impact generations to come, as the Kirk and crew did for the sons, daughters and grandchildren of those 30,000 people. Losing someone we know is always difficult. Losing a piece of history because of neglect, ignorance or lack of caring is a tragedy.
Let’s work together so that doesn’t happen.