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Vietnam Veteran Marine Richard Wayne “Dick” Mullen has finally gotten the welcome home he deserved after serving in the Vietnam War. Unfornately, it came at his funeral in Wichita Tuesday.
Mr. Mullen died April 8 in Vonore, Tenn., following complications after a fall. He was 69 years old. He was born and grew up in Wichita, but moved to Tennessee after his service in Vietnam.
Mr. Mullen earned a Silver Star, Purple Heart and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Palms, before he came home to a country that didn’t care or want to know about the blood and death he had witnessed.
A military graveside service was held at 2 p.m. today at the Wichita Park Cemetery, 3424 E. 21st St., a welcome home to Wichita his three siblings will give him the welcome home they think he deserved but never got.
“Unlike the heroes of today who serve in Afghanistan and Iraq and come home heroes and are welcomed by everybody, the Vietnam heroes were forgotten,” said Bob Mullen, a brother and a highly decorated Vietnam vet himself. “Dick is a man who did what so few guys did during his time,” . “He went to war. He was one of the ones who suffered and suffered for years afterward. But as much as anybody did, he lived a life of sharing and caring for all the people around him.”
Mr. Mullen was born April 28, 1942, at St. Francis Hospital in Wichita.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Out of the Shadows, an organization benefiting veterans with post traumatic stress syndrome, in care of Bob Mullen, P.O. Box 774402, Steamboat Springs, CO 80477; or to the Wounded Warrior Project at www.woundedwarriorproject.org.