Saturday, July 20, 2024

Vest from Chinle Chapter insults former delegate

Vest from Chinle Chapter insults former delegate

When an injured Eugene Tso returned to Chinle from Vietnam, a medicine man told him not to talk about his time in the war and to leave the bad stuff behind him and live his life.

For nearly 50 years, Tso never opened up about his experience, not once as he struggled through the injuries that made him a 50% disabled veteran. He continued his life’s journey until he became Chinle’s Council delegate.

Not until two weeks ago, when he was a guest speaker at the “Prayers for our Active-Duty Personnel” ceremony in Window Rock, where for the first time, before close friends and the public, he gave a brief insight into what he endured. He also shared what veterans faced coming home and what it means to be told, “Thank you.” He gave an emotional prayer for past and current soldiers before stepping down.

He was presented with the Navajo flag, a letter of appreciation from President Buu Nygren, and then two vests from Chinle Delegate Shawna Claw.
Claw worked closely with Tso at the Chinle Chapter for over eight years, becoming friends as they both advocated strongly for Chinle and its veterans.
She gave him one vest from her family and another from the chapter.

Tso gratefully took the items, later saying in a Navajo Times interview that this was the first time since he returned from the war that he felt appreciated for serving and sacrificing for his country.

Read the full story in the May 4 edition of the Navajo Times.

About The Author

David Smith

David Smith is Tódích’íi’nii and born for Dziłt’aadí. He is from Chinle and studied at Northern Arizona University. He studied journalism and English for five years while working part-time for NAU’s NAZ Today and the Lumberjack newspaper. After graduating in 2020, he joined the Navajo Times as a sportswriter for two years before leaving in September 2022. Smith returned in February 2023.


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