Life Advice



Ask Amy: Vietnam War casts long shadow over family

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: More than 50 years ago, my sister married a guy who skipped the States after being drafted into the US Army (it was during the Vietnam War).

I was also drafted and served, including going to Vietnam.

My mother was totally against my sister marrying this guy because he was on the lam.

I was asked to meet with his parents when they came to my Mom's house, with instructions from my parents to make it very clear that they were totally against this marriage, making me the bad guy in this scenario.

My sister told our mom that if I wanted to attend the wedding, the invitation was left on top of my mom's refrigerator. I took it personally because I was married and living with my wife and son and the invitation should have been sent to our home address.

I did not attend the ceremony.


They still live outside the country, but their children – my nephews and nieces – are American citizens and live here. They are grown and have kids of their own.

They greet me with respect and call me uncle.

My sister and I never got close again. I have yet to meet my brother-in-law in person.

They are now alone in a foreign country with no intention of coming back.


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