Photo of USTDC courtesy of Les Duffin

Thursday, March 18, 2010

And Away We Went

Since I first created this blog, I've posted several pieces about the withdrawal of American military personnel and their families from Taiwan.  Some of those articles had to do with the immediate aftermath of President Carter's announcement of the withdrawal, including the demonstrations that took place in the Taipei area, and the "nuts and bolts" of the whole withdrawal process.

Bill Kling has suggested that it might be interesting for many of us to know what the departure meant on a personal level for those who were there.  I know that at least a few readers were there at (or near) the end and I'd very much like to hear from you.  Because those comments could be rather lengthy, I think it would be better for me to post them, rather than just having you use the comments section of this piece.   Of course each article would likely draw its own comments and that's fine.  Just send me an email at the address shown toward the upper-right of this page.



Here are a few ideas that Bill and I came up with to get you started:
  • What facilities in the compounds were still open and which had already closed?
  • When did the China Seas and Linkou Annex clubs close?  Did they offer full service up to the end?
  • Where did everyone stay during the last month or so, including those living in the hostel?
  • Did you and your family feel at all threatened or uncomfortable as you moved about the city?
  • Were any facilities looted that you're aware of?
  • How was your relationship with your amah, yard man, houseboy, etc., after the announcement?
  • Did you dispose of your appliances, car, etc., before departing?
  • What do you remember about AFNT and the changeover to ICRT?
  • When did the hospital close and how did that affect you?
  • Did local merchants (furniture makers, etc.) offer any special deals to those leaving?
  • Did the Navy Exchange and Commissary offer any special deals?
  • What was your feeling as you went to the airport and boarded your flight?
I'm sure there are probably dozens of other questions I haven't even considered, but these should get you started.  I'd really appreciate it if you could take a few minutes to put your memories into words and send them to me.  It must have been a difficult time for all concerned and I'd very much like to record your stories about it.

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