Veterans Day Through The Eyes of a Donut Dolly

This Veterans Day we celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Vietnam Women’s Memorial. This magnificent bronze statue honors the 11,000 American military women stationed in Vietnam during the war.

Ninety percent of those women were nurses but others served as physicians, physical therapists and personnel in the medical field, air traffic control, military intelligence, administration and in many other capacities. Hundreds of civilian women also served as workers for the Red Cross, the USO, Special Services and other organizations.

Holley Watts is one of those women women who brought comfort and smiles to troops in Vietnam. Acting as a “reminder of home,” she would boost troop morale by visiting hospitals, playing games, and aiding the homesick. She was a Donut Dolly. Hear her tell her story at The Wall on Veterans Day 2013.

At a time when others chose to protest the war at home, these Donut Dollies chose to serve in Vietnam’s recreation program for the American Red Cross. Many of them were motivated by JFK’s “call to duty and service” and continue to hold a special place in a lot of veteran’s hearts as they gave our soldiers a “touch of home.”