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"Our base camp held 25,000 men and 25 women." (Video interview, 15:32)

   Bernadette Agnes Payla Miller
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Bernadette Miller, An Khe, Vietnam [5/1970]
War: Vietnam War, 1961-1975
Branch: Army
Service Location: Fort Sam Houston and Fort Hood, Texas; Central Highlands and An Khe, Vietnam
Rank: Captain
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Captain Bernadette Miller was just twenty-one years old when she arrived in Vietnam for duty as a post-operative nurse. Considered the baby of the hospital, the other nurses took her under their wing, helping her to cope with the stress of the job. Her first night there, a rocket attack roused her out of bed and into the hospital, where she evacuated patients while wearing a flak jacket over her pajamas; after that, she slept in her fatigues. Because she worked at a field hospital, where most patients stayed for only a few days before being transferred elsewhere, she never knew how her patients fared after they left her care.

Interview (Video)
»Interview Highlights  (3 clips)
»Complete Interview 
Download: video (41 min.)
»Photo Album  (5 photos)
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Hardest part of the job was not being able to save all of the patients; dealing with mass casualty incidents; notable incident in which she treated a patient from near her hometown. (01:59) Taking care of and interaction with Vietnamese civilians; treating pregnant women and POWs; dealing with stress; treated very well because of the scarcity of women on base. (04:03) Rocket attack her first night at the hospital. (01:20)

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  October 26, 2011
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