loading image

During the Vietnam War, commercial airliners, along with their crews, were chartered to fly U.S. troops into combat zones. In addition to bringing personnel into and out of the war zone, commercial airlines were also used to transport servicemembers on rest and recuperation leave (R&R). All deployed U.S. military personnel qualified for a five-day R&R once they served in Vietnam for three months. The military established a number of R&R destinations in the Pacific region including Honolulu, Tokyo, Manila, Hong Kong, Sydney, Bangkok, and others. After leave was over, soldiers on the return flights often needed the same emotional support that they received on their initial flights to Vietnam. This was often more difficult because the soldiers now knew what awaited them. See “Flying the Freedom Birds: Airlines and the Vietnam War,” on display, pre-security, in the Aviation Museum and Library. http://bit.ly/FreedomBirds This image was posted on January 14, 2020.