Jim Berger Vietnam War Veterans.mp3

KMOX: On-Demand
Friday, January 24th
Jim Berger says it’s pretty crazy how the world turns.  “I’m playing Pickle Ball at the YMCA when Tri Nguyen walks in to play and we end up pairing up.”  

Berger says after a while they got to know each other and after a bit of translation help from Nguyen’s son, Berger found out they fought as allies in the Vietnam War in the same spots, during the same time, just in different armies. Nguyen was a Captain with the Army of the Republic of Vietnam and Berger a 1st Lieutenant in the US Army. 

“We were both stationed near the demilitarized zone or DMZ, near Hamburger Hill, we were two different forces, fighting together at the same time.”  

Berger said he and Nguyen were lucky to have made it out alive. He said it was a very hot spot in the war and to think now we are in our seventies playing pickle ball together.


Berger is a Webster Groves native, but moved down to Jefferson County over ten years ago. Nguyen told me he  was resettled in the United States after the war, he and his family live in Jefferson County and his children own a nail salon. 

 And to make the two men’s connection a little deeper, Berger said he was at his granddaughter’s high school tennis match when he ran into Nguyen, “I asked him who he was watching and to our astonishment our grandkids were actually tennis team partners for Crystal City High school.”