Ed Garza


Ed Garza






Miriam Entin-Bell


Ed Garza

OHMS Object Text

5.4 Ed Garza Latino Lorain Fall 2022 Oberlin College Library Ed Garza Miriam Entin-Bell 0 https://media.lib.oberlin.edu/media_objects/0g354f27r Avalon https://media.lib.oberlin.edu/ video &lt ; iframe title=&quot ; Garza, Ed&quot ; src=&quot ; //media.lib.oberlin.edu:443/master_files/2b88qc23w/embed&quot ; width=&quot ; 600&quot ; height=&quot ; 337&quot ; frameborder=&quot ; 0&quot ; webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen allowfullscreen&gt ; &lt ; /iframe&gt ; 31 Early life in Lorain: Childhood, Family Values, Adolescence I was born in Mansfield Ohio, uh, August 18th 1950, and we lived there about a year or so and then moved up here directly, to Lorain, and that's where I was raised. Mainly in South Lorain area, then the West Side, then all over Lorain, what are you gonna do... Mr. Garza speaks about his early life in Lorain, gives background on his parents and siblings, and describes some of the family values imparted on him. His parents are both from Texas, his father working on railroads in Pennsylvania and in shipyards, and his mother cooking and at one point owning a restaurant in South Lorain. He describes his siblings, five brothers and two sisters, and reflects on his early life and how they were raised. Mr. Garza recounts first jobs at a carwash and doing neighborhood errands, and talks about his father's value of hard work to earn a living. He mentions his parents' divorce and how it affected him as a young adult, citing this as one reason he made the decision to go into military service. Finally, he speaks about his first girlfriend, framing it as a formative moment in his life. Family ; Girlfriend ; Railroad ; South Lorain ; Texas Coming of Age ; Family Values ; First Jobs ; Work 351 Pressure to Enlist, Fatherhood, First Love Next thing I know [sigh] I went and told my mom about that, she just stood there, sat there looking at me... she said what you need to do is go into service and take care of business. Mr. Garza describes the situation of his first girlfriend's pregnancy and the reactions of those around him, mainly his mother. He speaks about how she told him to go into service to 'take care of business.&quot ; He briefly describes his path into service, basic training, and returning to Lorain on leave. He explains that on leave, he attempted to see his girlfriend, but she was no longer living in Lorain and had put their son up for adoption. He then tells a more current story about reconnecting with both his first girlfriend and son. Finally he speaks on a few pastimes, such as playing sports, learning guitar, and swimming in Oakwood Park, that were memorable in his early life. Fort Knox ; Oakwood Park ; Uniform Adoption ; Basic Training ; Fatherhood ; Guitar ; Service ; Sports 555 Formative Moments, Mentors, and Friends I never knew anything about well he's different, she's different, or this and that, it didn't even enter my mind. I spoke to whoever I wanted to, got along good, you know just I started seeing the world changing when I came back from 'Nam. We knew about the protests going on, we would hear it on the radio... Mr. Garza talks about what life was like before and after he was stationed in Vietnam. He tells a story about anti-war protesters in Lorain, and a conflict he had with them while in uniform after his return. He then speaks about several friends and role models in his early life including Chief Rivera, his father, and many friends from his time in service. He then tells a story about a good friend who was killed during training at Fort Knox. He reflects on his fathers values towards work and family and how he has realized those values in his life. Finally he lists some jobs he had after returning from Vietnam including police and security work, being a bounty hunter, and working at the courthouse in Elyria. Bootcamp ; Chief Rivera ; Fort Knox ; San Fransisco ; Vietnam Change ; Family Life ; Father ; Protest ; School ; Work 878 Process of Enlisting and Relationship to Military Service My older brother Al, he was in the Air Force for six and a half years, you know. Matter of fact we were in service at the same time together, but he was in the Air Force and I was in the Army, the Army wears green, the Air Force wears blue. And uh, then there was my brother Ernest, he was in Marine Corps, there was my brother Rich, Richie, he passed away a month after he retired, he was in the Marine Corps, my brother Gill he was in the Army, and my brother Henry also. Mr. Garza explains his family's history with military service and lists the branches his brothers were involved in. After saying a little about each of his brothers, he talks about the role of military service in his community, the draft, and his path towards enlistment. Calling back to the initial story about his first girlfriend's pregnancy, he describes his mother's reaction to his request that she sign his enlistment papers, due to him being a minor at the time. U.S. Air Force ; U.S. Army ; U.S. Marines Brothers ; Draft ; Recruiting 1057 Experiences with Basic Training and Combat Oh yeah, back then 'cause you know, we're talking the late 60s, middle 60s... and by the time '69 rolled around I was already combat coming back home. Didn't take long did it. It takes one day to get killed, you know that, and one second. Mr. Garza recounts his experiences with training and combat during his time in the military. Topics include his relationship with his platoon, reactions after combat, the challenges they faced, and his feelings against war. He then goes into more detail about his training at Fort Knox, mentioning some friends and pictures from that time, and learning new military technology during the war. He concludes with discussing the reality of combat compared to training. Fort Knox ; Glory ; M16 ; Patrol ; Platoon ; Vietnam Combat ; War 1345 Leaving Home Well I would go to Texas, you know, when I was younger, fifteen, sixteen. I used to drive down there, when I was sixteen, I couldn't do it now though, too long. Two and a half days to get there right, to Texas, you think? Mr. Garza speaks about trips to Texas when he was younger, before he went into service. He details his family connections to Texas, saying that he has family that fought in the Alamo. He tells a story about his great-great grandfather who was a captain in a cavalry unit, the history of his surname, and his ancestor deserting his post due to ideological differences with President Santa Anna. He then talks about recent trips to Texas, where he met his oldest son and other relatives. Alamo ; Son ; Texas Family History 1549 Assignments During Service, Reunion I guess my scores came out pretty good, where I could work specialist, a finance specialist. At fort Benjamin Harrison I would take care of all the military's paychecks. So nobody wanted to bother me back then, because I hold your paycheck up. Mr. Garza describes his path during service, his M.O., and a chance reunion between him and his brother. He explains the role of Finance Specialist, saying that his main duties involved dealing with other soldier's paychecks at Fort Benjamin Harrison. He then states that he was moved to Fort Lewis, in Washington state, where he dealt with in-processing of soldiers returning from Vietnam. He recalls them looking unshaven, tired, angry, and disgusted, and that at the time he did not understand why. He then tells the story of a chance reunion with his brother Al, who was in the Air Force stationed in Alaska, and highlights a night out after they were finished with work. Finance Specialist ; Fort Benjamin Harrison ; Fort Lewis, Washington ; Incoming Troops Processing Brother ; M.O. ; Reunion 1757 Receiving Orders of Deployment to Vietnam I think, when I was stationed in Fort Lewis, I got orders to go to 'Nam. I was t'ed off that day, I was mad...I got pictures of me when I was standing on the porch of my uh, barrack where I was at, and my buddies said 'Hey Garza' and took a picture of me. 'You look like you're mad' and I showed him what I had... 'Oh man you're going to 'Nam?' and I said 'Yep, I got my orders.' Mr. Garza describes receiving his orders for deployment in Vietnam, returning to Lorain on leave, the process of traveling to Vietnam, and briefly speaks about what life was like while he was stationed there. He explains how he reacted when he received his orders, and how he was allowed 2-3 weeks of leave before his assignment in Vietnam began. During this time, he returned to Lorain and visited his mother, who was extremely upset to find out about Garza's deployment. He then describes the process of arriving in Vietnam, giving descriptions of the flight and the ground transportation it took to arrive in the rural Cu Chi Province. He then recounts a few pastimes he had while he was not on patrol or in combat, such as listening to music and admiring the scenery. However, he describes the majority of his time in Vietnam as challenging, and had few positive memories about the experience. Agent Orange ; Cam Rahn Bay ; Cu Chi Province Home ; Leave ; Music ; Orders ; Travel ; Uniforms 2050 Challenging Parts of Service and Career Influence &quot ; When you're in combat getting shot at everyday how are you going to have time to write home? Even if they give us half a day, we're too tired to write home.&quot ; &quot ; I learned a lot from the military. I liked looking sharp...combat is not good for anybody. I'll tell you right now the reason this stuff goes on is because the politicians. That's no lie, I'm just telling you like it is.&quot ; Mr. Garza says hand to hand was the most challenging part of service. He didn't want to kill people, but he had to otherwise he &quot ; wouldn't be here&quot ; . He didn't have time to write home during service, but he learned about the &quot ; gig line&quot ; --keeping his uniform buttons, shirt, and belt buckle aligned. Mr. Garza enjoyed having a straight gig line and attributes this to going on to work for security, the court, and the police. Career ; Combat ; Law Enforcement ; Writing Home 2278 Vietnam Discharge and Tunnel Rat Interviewer: &quot ; Do you remember the day that you came home?&quot ; Mr. Garza: &quot ; I felt like a tired old man.&quot ; &quot ; Not just me but anybody, even you ladies, if you were being shot at every day for 365 days, that's no good. It messes your mind up, your body, your feelings, your health, everything.&quot ; Mr. Garza left Vietnam in 1969. He remembers being in the field and having lost three or four friends and getting mad at his platoon leader and saying he wanted to go home. It was complicated to leave friends in the service behind when he left. When he got to Bien Moi airbase on his way home he was offered cash if he re-enlisted. Mr. Garza talks about how being shot at everyday for two years messes up your body, mind, and health. He recalls being a tunnel rat--being tied to a rope and lowered into tunnels in the ground for two and a half weeks and looking for Vietnamese soldiers--as a particularly terrible experience. Mr. Garza realizes that this interview is taking place exactly 53 years after he came home from Vietnam. Bien Moi Air Base ; Discharge ; Mental Health ; Physical Health ; Renlisting ; Tunnel Rat ; Vietnam War 2697 Veteran Discrimination and Experiences in Lorain &quot ; I remember coming home in my class As, that's the uniform itself and I had my duffel bag...waiting for the cab I was sitting in the corner, I see one coming over the hill, he saw me and kept going. You know why he kept going? The uniform, he didn't want no part of me.&quot ; &quot ; As I got older I realized he's just some guy that wants to protest the war. Don't take it out on me. I was just doing my job. Like a cop, like anybody else. If you do your job too good sometimes they don't like it. It's not my fault I made it back alive. God brought me home, I didn't. I was scared every day.&quot ; Mr. Garza talks about returning to Lorain after service and being treated badly because of status as a Vietnam veteran. He was not picked up by a cab at the bus station because he was wearing his Class A uniform. He visited his buddies in his uniform and they were trying to hassle him. They called him names: doper, rapist, murderer, baby killer. He remembers going to his mom's restaurant when he was home in Lorain and drinking. She was a &quot ; short lady&quot ; who worked all her life. When Mr. Garza was 21, he took a trip to California and played with Carlos Santana. Discrimination ; Drinking ; Uniform ; Vietnam War 3018 Discipline and Racial Segregation in Service &quot ; When we go back to main branch we would go back in there and wash up and shower up and relax until you go back out on patrol again. But when we're there everybody individually they stick to their own corners. Mexicans here, Latinos here, Italians here, whites over here, negros here. I don't know why but then when it's time to go back in combat again we marinate real good. You got to otherwise you won't make it. You leave your own self thoughts behind in combat. You either work as a unit or you're not going to make it. Go all Americans.&quot ; Mr. Garza talks about how the military taught him about discipline and how to stand up for himself. He says everyone has their individual likes and dislikes and explains how different racial and cultural groups self-segregated at the military base when not on patrol, but came together across racial and other differences in identity to fight together in combat. Mr. Garza says that politicians these days need to come together in this way and &quot ; go all American.&quot ; He learned to survive in the military--be quiet when you got to and speak up when you got to. Combat ; Discipline ; Politicans ; Politics ; Racism ; Segregation 3237 Reflections on the Politics of War &quot ; Can you imagine what the kids nowadays they see going on they think it's okay for them to be out there when they get older it's no good. if this keeps up we're not going to have no more world. Why not? because these morons from different countries are going to blow it up. We got to put a stop to it. This is why we are a great country--because we don't take no crap from nobody.&quot ; Mr. Garza says that the USA lost a lot of wars, and got beat in Vietnam because of politics. He says that we, as Americans, have got to stay together as a strong unit or else we will fall apart. Talks about being an altar boy with his brother at the original Sacred Heart chapel on Vine Avenue and getting caught sneaking wine from the Priest's office. He offers a message from his experience in the military: be kind to each other. Mr. Garza critiques the United States Government for being run by politicians who think about themselves instead of &quot ; us&quot ; . He hopes for a world better for the youth for his granddaughter and for the interviewer. Altar Boy ; Drinking ; Politicans ; Politics ; Sacred Heart Chapel 3577 Reflectings on Peace, Politics, and Faith &quot ; I pray for God to keep our country intact. Keep everything in peace. Enough of this nonsense already--beating each other up, mugging the old folks, you know putting their lives out. There's no need for that. Who wants to go to war? I came back when I was nineteen years old and I already felt like a tired old man.&quot ; Mr. Garza urges everyone to take care of themselves in terms of their health, keep the faith if you believe in God, keep the peace. When asked if by peace he means no war he says, &quot ; yeah, who wants to go to war?&quot ; He was nineteen years old when he came back from war and he felt like a tired old man. He came back from the service and slept all day because he was so tired. He urges everyone to be who you are, what you are, but don't push around nobody else. You don't have to rob nobody, don't hurt nobody. Anti War Movement ; Faith ; Mental Health ; Politicans ; Politics In copyright. video All rights reserved. 0 https://oberlincollegelibrary.org/ohms-viewer/render.php?cachefile=LL_Garza_Ed.xml LL_Garza_Ed.xml

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“Ed Garza,” Latino Lorain , accessed September 21, 2023, https://latinolorain.oberlincollegelibrary.org/items/show/130.