Kat Fitzpatrick

Writer | Researcher

How can we teach about a war that everyone hates? The Vietnam War created wounds that are not yet healed yet Vietnam is a country, not a war. The history contains myriad human stories and in those stories there is some modicum of love.

My chapbook, The Fight to Write; What the Vietnam War Taught Me About Truth & Writing is a short powerful piece that can help you teach your students about the role Vietnam has played in American history and students them to discover the power of their own stories.

My father had a unique role at the end of the war. He nearly did not get out. He cabled my mom: “Doing ok.”
My family was one of the few foreign families “permitted” to live in Saigon just before the Fall in April 1975.

My father’s story is one filled with love for Vietnam and can inform your lessons about the Vietnam Era.

In 2015, I traveled back to Vietnam to retrace my father’s final footsteps as he fled the communists in April 1975.
My mother’s letter to her parents on August 7, 1974, and a 2015 street display. “The Liberation Army attacked and occupied Thuong Duc County (Quang Nam Province) in August 1974. The success of this campaign has increased the determination to liberate the South within two years (1975-1976) of the Politburo and the Central Military Commission. (Source: Vietnam News Agency)
Christmas before the Fall:
Just before Thanksgiving my mother wrote home:
The VN situation really does not sound good – – we hear that there will be a Dec. offensive against the south – – I told Jim that it is good that we will be in Thailand so that they do not have to evacuate us and we can just stay there.
We lost. America lost. Period.
Banner at Tan Son Nhut Airport, 2015.

Coming soon to this site: Additional resources to help you engage your students in a meaningful way about one of the most critical junctures in our nation’s history.


Are you teaching about the history of the Vietnam War? I have unique resources that can help.