Vietnam

KUNC

Robert Wideman adjusts his glasses and runs his hand through his gray hair. He's sitting at his desk in his Fort Collins home looking at a grainy, sound-less film.

"I've never seen this," Wideman said. "Never."

It's from March 4, 1973. That's the day that Wideman and dozens of other prisoners of war were released in Hanoi, North Vietnam. KUNC found the rare historical footage in reporting this story.

Courtesy Ted Hummell

A few years ago, Ted Hummell got an odd call. It was the Department of Defense and they wanted his help in their efforts to identify the remains of his uncle, William Hellstern. Hummell, a 67-year-old Jaguar dealer who lives in Castle Rock, knew his uncle through his late mom.

"She cried every Dec. 7," Hummell said.

As the youngest in his family, Barry Romo grew up with nephews his age. In fact, one of them, Robert Romo, was just a month younger than him. Barry says that he and Robert were raised like brothers.

Both of them served in the Army during the Vietnam War. But only one of them made it home.

"I enlisted in the Army, to go to Vietnam, that was my intention. And he didn't want to go in the military but he got drafted anyway," Barry recalls on a recent visit with StoryCorps. "They sent him to Vietnam, and he ended up being in my brigade."

When you think about Vietnamese food, you might think of savory beef noodle soup, or endless fields of rice paddies. But chocolate?

As the world's demand for chocolate grows, Vietnam is making a bid to become one of the world's newest high quality suppliers.

Samuel Maruta and Vincent Mourou are two players in the country's small but growing cocoa industry. They founded Marou, an artisan chocolate company, three years ago in Ho Chi Minh City.

Colorado Farmers Told To Sit Tight For Final Trade Deal

Mar 6, 2014
Bill Wheelhouse / Harvest Public Media

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is telling farmers to be patient while his office hammers out a major trade deal with a group of Asian countries, called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

Bill Battle peers through the window of a pickup truck at his catfish farm, Pride of the Pond, near Tunica, Miss. The land is pancake-flat, broken up by massive ponds, some holding up to 100,000 pounds of catfish.

Cormorants fly low over the ponds, keeping an eye out for whiskered, smooth-skinned fish. Battle keeps a shotgun in the front seat; business is hard enough without the birds cutting into his profit.

Vo Nguyen Giap, the Vietnamese general who masterminded the defeat of French colonial forces at Dien Bien Phu and the Tet Offensive that turned many Americans against the Vietnam War, has died at 102.

Giap, whose legacy in Vietnam is second only to Ho Chi Minh, the revolutionary communist leader, died Friday at a hospital in the capital, Hanoi, a government official tells news agencies.

Four decades ago, Ho Van Thanh fled the fighting in his native Vietnam, disappearing into the jungle with his infant son, Ho Van Lang. This week, father and son emerged for the first time — an enfeebled Thanh carried in a stretcher, and Lang wearing only a loincloth made of tree bark.

According to the Vietnamese newspaper Dan Tri, Ho Van Thanh, now 82, was last seen in 1973 running into the jungle, after his wife and two other children were killed by a bomb or land mine near his home.

Recent news out of Vietnam intrigued us here at The Salt. Ho Chi Minh City is set to get its first McDonald's sometime in the next year, according to the company.

It seems Vietnam is ready for the iconic American food, and McDonald's is confident that Vietnamese consumers now have enough disposable income to get hooked on shakes, burgers and fries.

That got us thinking about the global reach of one of the world's most iconic food companies.

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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm David Greene.

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