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By Team MOC

The Vietnam War, for many reasons, was an exceptionally divisive conflict in American culture. In fact, even today, the echoes of the debate over drafting, what it means to be patriotic, and the role of America’s military around the world can be felt. When troops came home, for most, it was not to parades and fanfare. Many found themselves unwillingly embroiled in the public and political controversy surrounding every aspect of the war.

Today, we salute all who served:

These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
POWs celebrate as their American plane begins taxiing down the runway in Hanoi. (Photo: US Air Force)
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
Lt. Magnolia Lilly, Army Nurse Corps, works in an emergency room in South Vietnam. (Photo: Texas Tech University)
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
Two brothers-in-arms support an injured third in the jungles of Vietnam. (Photo: Stars and Stripes)
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
Vietnam-era nurses form ranks for an inspection. (Photo: Texas Tech University)
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
Air Tech. Sgt. James R. Cook, a POW, salutes as he is carried aboard a plane to freedom during Operation Homecoming in 1973. (Photo: U.S. Air Force)
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
Service members entertain each other during some down time. (Photo: National Archives)
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
John McCain–then a newly released POW, now a Senator–waits to board a plane to finally leave North Vietnam. (Photo: US Navy)
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
The family of a POW reunites with him in the Philippines. (Photo: CNN)
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
A plane of POWs from North Vietnam arrives on American soil. (Photo: woah.org)
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
Civilians celebrate over a banner welcoming troops home.
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
A family reunites with their service member.
These Photos Will Remind You of the Sacrifice of the Vietnam War Generation
People line the street to welcome some returning troops home.

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