Vietnam Vets Reflect On "Blind Bat" Mission - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Vietnam Vets Reflect On "Blind Bat" Mission

A secret mission during the Vietnam War was relived at a conference in Biloxi this weekend. On Sunday morning veterans who were apart of the classified operation "Blind Bat" and their families sat down to swap war stories and try to get some closure.

From 1965 to 1970 the men flew out on night bombing raids over the Ho Chi Minh Trail to keep supplies from north Vietnam from reaching the South. In all about 75 veterans from all over the county came to the conference. Before this weekend some of them hadn't seen each other in more than 30 years while others met for the first time.

"Whenever you do something in life you're never quite sure whether you finished it did it right and whether it's over or not," said veteran Bob Kellock."I think this was finishing period for a lot of us. We wanted to make sure that what we had done was good and we needed a little bit of affirmation that we were okay."

One of the highlights of the conference was when a Vietnam Veteran who had been carrying around the knife of a comrade killed in action hoping to give it to a relative presented it to the man's son, Tom Brotherman of Texas.

"I think it's healing in both ways for me," said Brotherman. "I get to know what he did and I get to be with some of the guys that knew him and these guys get to tell their stories and share with each other."

Organizers say they hope to make Batfest a bi-annual event.

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