Fallbrook High School alum Don Bick has completed a project that many in his position would never even begin to attempt. Bick, a graduate of the Class of 1967, penned a book, “The Boy Died in Vietnam,” which was published last year.
The book details Bick’s experiences in the Vietnam War and his resulting, painful 42-year struggle with chronic Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
“I never dreamed I had been affected to the extent it now appears [I have],” wrote Bick, at age 62. “I can look back on my life and see it has been a classic case of the disorder since my return from the Vietnam War.”
A popular high school athlete who grew up in a solid family, Bick said that he envisioned a “picket fence” future, but when his life’s journey took him into the Marine Corps and ultimately to Vietnam, it changed which path his life would take and certain images were destined to remain forever etched in his mind.
Bick’s primary assignment location during the war was in the Dong Ha area of Vietnam. Because he was trained to speak Vietnamese early in his military career, he was selected for certain tasks.
Amidst the devastation caused by the war, Bick was assigned to transport children that had died from wartime injuries back to their homes and families.
“Without exception, the child would weigh next to nothing when I lifted him or her and carried them out to my vehicle,” related Bick. “It was up to me to express (on behalf of the U.S. military) our condolences to the mother and father when I returned a deceased child back home.”
“When you hear or read in the news that so many militants died