Re "A friend long gone, but never forgotten" (Dan Morain, March 30): Thank you for publishing the recent article on Rocky Cole, a young man who was cut down in a rice paddy near Duc Pho, Vietnam on March 29, 1969.
Several years ago I cut out Cole's obituary, placed in The Bee by a childhood friend every year on the date of Cole's death, and pasted it on a wall in my kitchen. I am of the same era, a 1970 graduate of Santa Monica High School, but comfortably separated from Vietnam by gender and college prep status.
The price of that war still haunts us: more than 58,000 Americans and 2 million Vietnamese were killed, and for what? The annual placement of this obituary honors a gentle man and challenges us to reflect on the heavy costs of war, including the taking of innocents.
-- Ellen Sward, Carmichael