TOWANDA, Pa. -- Vietnam War veterans from the Northern Tier received something they weren’t entirely used to – a thank you.
Veterans from Bradford, Susquehanna, and Sullivan counties were honored for their sacrifices at the American Legion in Towanda.
This past Friday was Vietnam War Veterans Day in the U.S., so lawmakers from the area wanted to thank these veterans for their sacrifices.
It was a truly emotional experience for the vets.
More than 150 Vietnam War veterans filled the room. Among them was army veteran Richard Powell, who was wounded in the battle of Hamburger Hil.
“I'm one of the lucky ones that survived it. I lost some friends and so forth but I made it through it,” Powell said.
Some veterans said coming home after the war was somewhat of an uncomfortable experience.
“I was even told to take my uniform off when I got into California because of dangers of being a military person on the street,” Powell said.
“They didn't even know us. Our own hometowns didn't even know us,” Army veteran Allan Wilbur said.
Each veteran was given a pin and a certificate, what lawmakers said was a long overdue thank you.
“It's mind boggling. It's hard to say - it's just, we're not used to it,” Army veteran George Eddy said.
Each pin symbolized thankfulness. On the back it read, ‘a grateful nation honors you,’ which ended up being closest to the veteran’s heart.
“It gives you a little pride for being there and the rest of the people that were there, besides just us,” Army veteran Duane Walker said.
Three veterans were also awarded with quilts made by Quilts of Valor and Friendship Quilters of Wysox. Each quilt was unique.
“It's fantastic. It's a surprise to receive this blanket and I'm very honored with it,” Powell said.
“It makes you feel good right here that you have helped these men,” Quilter Ruth Clearwater said.
Veterans we spoke to said events like these go a long way to make them feel appreciated.