The sound of his voice was always soothing and comforting, for at least we knew at that very moment he was safe. We would anticipate receiving the tapes from our father, and upon its arrival we would impatiently wait with bated breath for the evening hours.
After dinner in the eary hours of night we would all gather around the family room table to hear the sound of his voice and savor his words. Later in the evening we would take turns putting our messages on tapes to send to him. Those audios were sent 8,000 miles away but carried with them all our hopes, wishes and dreams. Words and phrases were construed painstakingly and contained heart felt messages sent to a far away land. Attached to each tape were children's voices abound with absolute love, longing and adoration
JPAC had obtained enough information to provide almost the exact coordinates of his burial site. Information was also conveyed that O’Grady’s dog tags were buried with him.
Another phone call came,on May 26, 2012 at 2 am I awoke to a phone call that at the time I thought was life changing. I answered the phone, still half asleep to the sound of my sister Patty’s voice. She was calling from a remote village in Vietnam, she said with great excitement, “They Found Daddy”, “They really found him” Now I was fully awake, I was astonished and filled with incredible excitement. 45 years of penned up emotions flooded out, later I cried for hours, they were tears of joy and sadness, Sadness of a reality, that he was dead, joy that he would no longer be 8,000 miles away buried in an unmarked grave all alone and elated that I would finally have the opportunity to say goodbye and place flowers upon his grave.
It was not much later that all that elation turned to utter disappointment, JPAC suspended all excavations at the site after my sister’s refusal to leave. They had not found my dad, the phone call from sister earlier was not true. Within a few days a firestorm of controversy ensued, Vietnamese officials wanted my sister Patty to leave their country immediately. Patty refused and became uncooperative so JPAC suspended the excavation.
The U.S. Government and JPAC stated emphatically that they never found my father's remains. Vietnamese officials continue to completely deny that our father was found, JPAC and other U.S. government officials state emphatically that any excavation at the site was suspended and no remains were ever discovered. No further excavation has been reinstated, though it has been 16 months since they halted the search. This is an outrage, where is my father?