George D’Angelo volunteered for the Air Force after graduating from Duquesne University in 1965. He trained as a fighter pilot and was assigned to the 12th Tactical Fighter Wing at Cam Ranh Air Base in Vietnam, where he flew the F-4 Phantom II fighter-bomber on bombing missions over Vietnam. He didn’t have much interaction with the Vietnamese apart from that. “I’m sure what was happening on the ground wasn’t pretty,” he says.
George remained in the Air Force and rose to the rank of colonel before retiring in 1990. He has since served as special advisor to the United Nations in conflict prevention, humanitarian affairs, and peace-keeping operations.
He received a Ph.D. in conflict prevention, coordinated the UN’s International Day of Peace, and founded the International Day of Peace vigil. George is also founder of Friends of Danang, a non-profit made up largely of Vietnam veterans that does humanitarian work in Vietnam. He is active in trying to establish a U.S. Department of Peace.
In April 2013, Vietnam veteran George D’Angelo joined us for our first veterans oral history educational project at Winchester-Thurston School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He was part of our effort to work with teachers and students to provide an interesting workshop covering the oral history process, appropriate interview questions, special considerations when interviewing veterans, active listening skills, and oral history ethics.
George’s story begins at 3:24.
Winchester-Thurston School Veterans Oral History Project 2013 from Veterans Breakfast Club on Vimeo.