Vietnam Vet - Rory
This photo was from the first story I worked on for People Magazine. Rory is a Vietnam vet who returned home to essentially have his face rebuilt. A shell had taken his face off from his eyebrows down. He was blind, was missing his nose, mouth, and soft pallete. He couldn’t chew or swallow food and had to eat using a turkey baster. It’s interesting that when the VA Hospital in Washington, DC, informed Rory they had done all they could, that he would just have to deal with that turkey baster the rest of his life, President Richard Nixon got involved, had somebody from the VA on the carpet in the Oval Office, and Rory got all his needed operations.
He is baby-sitting for his nieces in this photo. They only knew him when he returned with his ruined face, and accepted that as normal for Uncle Rory.
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