Wareham Vietnam Veterans remembered, honored at memorial brunch

Apr 1, 2018

The sacrifices of four Wareham residents killed in action during the Vietnam War were honored once again at the annual Pfc. Carlos James Rose Memorial Brunch on Saturday morning.

Now in its 11th year, the event was organized by Ervin “Tootsie” Russell, himself a Vietnam veteran who served in 1971. Russell serves as chaplain for the Dudley L. Brown Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2846.

Rose, a Marine, was a friend of Russell’s who died May 12, 1969 at Hamburg Hill in Vietnam.

“There are times when mere words seem inadequate and our deeds speak better than words,” said Russell during the event’s invocation.

Rose’s portrait was displayed alongside photographs of the three other Wareham residents who died in the war: Richard Arruda, Ronald Bumpus and James Crowley.

William Lopes, Rose’s son, said he was grateful his father was still being remembered many years after his death. Three years old when his father passed, Lopes said he didn’t have any memories of him. However, many people still do and seeing them come out for the event was touching.

“Many veterans didn’t come home to a great welcome after the Vietnam War,” said Lopes, a Bourne resident. “But it’s nice to see people taking the time to honor my father and the others who died, all these years later.”

Saturday's event was held to coincide with National Vietnam Veterans Day, which was officially designated as March 29 by President Donald Trump. Previously, the day had been held on either March 29 or 30 through a patchwork of state resolutions.