Veterans History Project

Excerpt from part one of a four-part interview series with Vietnam veteran Donald MacIver, Jr. at the Central Branch of the Brooklyn Public Library (BPL). In this segment, Don describes his initial aspirations toward the Green Berets and his performance on the Special Forces Battery Test during Army training. Throughout the series, Don creates an engaging narrative arc that spans his early work in politics, basic training, service in Vietnam, and his leadership roll in the Gay, Lesbian, & Bi-Sexual Veterans of the Greater New York Area office post-service. Click here for the full interview. Parts two through four of the series are listed below. 

The Veterans History Project records the personal accounts of American war veterans and makes them available so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand the realities of war.

Please e-mail nhiggins@bklynlibrary.org or call the Brooklyn Public Library at 718.230.2745 to schedule an appointment to record your story or to find out how to volunteer as an interviewer.

Recordings will be stored in the permanent archive at the Library of Congress in Washington DC and will also be made available in the Brooklyn Public Library's Brooklyn Collection archive.

Lubin Hunter, World War II veteran, discusses studying B-17 bombers in the United States and the importance of military secrecy during the war. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum on February 22nd, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Ed Terry, Vietnam veteran, describes arriving in San Francisco after a cross-country journey post-service and negotiating with a grocer for food for him and a friend. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum on February 22nd, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Alan Ceruti, Vietnam veteran, discusses his most memorable military experience. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum on February 22nd, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Richard Haile, WWII veteran, discusses communicating with friends and family while stationed in Japan, finding his brother-in-law by unusual means, and his luck as a soldier. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum on February 22nd, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Susan Soto Phillips, Persian Gulf veteran, describes arriving at base camp, her experiences as a woman in the Persian Gulf, and her service in the Air Force Honor Guard. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum on February 22nd, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Cassio Norwood, Vietnam veteran, discusses his appreciation for the pilots who did their jobs and his experience with anti-war sentiment in the United States upon returning home. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum on February 22nd, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Jason Scott Cofield, veteran of the Air Force during the Cold War era, discusses the reality of combat and the beauty of the military. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum on February 22nd, 2014. Click here for full interview.

Daniel Collins, veteran of the Marine Corps and Air National Guard, compares his experiences in both branches of service. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock National Cultural Center and Museum on April 16th, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Valesta Lynch, veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, discusses her military duties and cultural observations on Afghanistan. This interview was conducted at Medgar Evers College on May 12th, 2014. Click here for the full interview. Richard Mallin, Jr., WWII veteran, describes pre-training for heavy cruiser operation in Newport, Rhode Island, his first ship dive in Bermuda, and sleeping under the torpedo tubes on the ship. This interview was conducted at his home in Brooklyn, NY on April 12th, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

James Henry Phillips, WWII veteran, describes being on the trail of General Patton in France and Germany and his subsequent deployment to the Philippines. This interview was conducted on the Shinnecock Indian Reservation on March 11th, 2014. Click here for the full interview. James Keith Phillips, Navy veteran, discusses the influence of military service on his later life. This interview was conducted on the Shinnecock Indian Reservation on April 5th, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Robert Tomlin, Navy veteran, discusses his induction into the Navy at the time of the Vietnam War and the discrimination against homosexuality in the armed forces. This interview was conducted in Brooklyn, NY on April 28th, 2014. Click here for the full interview. Arthur Williams, Sr., WWII veteran, discusses his medical duties, being bombed by the Japanese in New Guinea, his medals, bad rations, and the rainy season in the Pacific. This interview was conducted on the Shinnecock Indian Reservation on April 6th, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Donald Williams, Sr., Air Force veteran in the aftermath of WWII, discusses becoming a man during service, his communication with home, and the end of his service in Japan. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock Indian Reservation on April 12th, 2014. Click here for the full interview. Florine Judah, Navy veteran, discusses the issues surrounding her discharge. This interview was conducted in Brooklyn, NY on March 18th, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Harry Williams, WWII veteran, recalls his equipment responsibilities during deployment in Europe. This interview was conducted at his home on the Shinnecock Indian Reservation on March 29th, 2014. Click here for the full interview. Walter Wise, Jr., WWII veteran, describes his first experiences in the Army after enlisting. This interview was conducted at the Shinnecock Nation Cultural Center and Museum on April 12th, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Donald MacIver, Jr. details some of the duties of the Special Forces A Team medics in Vietnam in the second part of a four-part interview series with staff members of the Brooklyn Public Library. This interview was conducted at the Central Branch of BPL on April 14th, 2014. Click here for the full interview.

Donald MacIver, Jr. describes treating the local population as a Green Beret medic in Vietnam in the third part of a four-part interview series with staff members of the Brooklyn Public Library. This interview was conducted at the Central Branch of BPL. Click here for the full interview.

Donald MacIver, Jr. describes traveling to Washington DC to protest DADT legislation at the White House in the final part of a four-part interview series with staff members of the Brooklyn Public Library. This interview was conducted at the Central Branch of BPL on May 13th, 2014. Click here for the full interview.