Remembering Vietnam Veteran And Advocate Dave Evans


On this West Virginia Morning, Dave Mistich speaks with Report for America fellow Chris Jones about his recent story looking at and defining two movements: Antifa and Boogaloo Boys. Also, in this show, we remember Vietnam veteran Dave Evans who touched the lives of not just West Virginians, but many people around the world. Evans spent his life after the military helping those ravaged by war. We also hear an interview with a man who worked to tackle challenges faced by Charleston, West Virginia’s Black community during a time when some say urban renewal forced many Black residents in the city to leave their neighborhood.

In the most recent episode of Inside Appalachia, we revisit an episode about Charleston’s Black community, and several chapters in the city’s history. Some say urban renewal in the 1960s and 1970s forced many Black residents to leave their neighborhood, which was called The Triangle District. Many residents left the city, and the state. Some moved across town, to a neighborhood known as the West Side. Reverend Matthew Watts, the senior pastor at the Grace Bible Church of Charleston, persuaded his church to move to the West Side because of the need he saw among the neighborhood’s residents. He and his wife moved onto what he said was, at the time, the toughest street on the West Side. He said he wanted to be “more creative, more disciplined, more determined and more resolved” to do something about the problems faced by the community. Watts spoke with Aaron Henkin for WYPR’s Out of the Blocks podcast.

This weekend brought us the sad news of the passing of a native son of West Virginia, a U.S. Marine Corps Vietnam veteran. Dave Evans of Cabin Creek in Kanawha County, spent the last 4 decades traveling to war-torn countries fitting the innocent bystanders of war with prosthetic limbs. It was a passion that touched thousands of lives around the world, and a life-long commitment Evans made following the loss of his own legs in an ambush in Vietnam in 1970 when he was just 18 years old. After returning home to West Virginia, he became a state leader and national player in the anti-war movement. Dave Evans told his story to executive producer Suzanne Higgins in 2016. We share an excerpt from that interview, about his time in Vietnam.

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