Mayor Phil Goode

Mayor Phil Goode

Vision of Vets was honored to interview Mayor Phil Goode, Vietnam Combat Veteran.

Please check back for his video!

Written by Sue Tone

Prescott Mayor Phil Goode served in the U.S. Army from 1970 to 1977 including one tour of Vietnam in 1970-71 with the 101st Airborne Division as an M-16 machine gun team leader. He credits his military training and combat experience with developing discipline and giving him the confidence to advocate for himself and others.

“One thing that I took away from it was the understanding that I can keep my head and keep focused on the necessary steps of completing a mission in the most stressful environments,” Goode explained.

Goode’s father, two uncles and two brothers served in the military, which led to his enlistment in the Army. He found the conditions in Vietnam difficult on several levels. The everyday rain in the monsoon season and the jungle contributed to the grueling conditions of war.

“There were a lot of leeches in the water, and it was just challenging to even be able to survive the environment, much less the combat situations,” he said.

Some combat veterans suffer from PTSD following their time in the military. Goode said he is 80% disabled from a variety of conditions related to his service. He sometimes finds it difficult to describe certain experiences because it triggers emotional connections. He believes that a vast majority of Vietnam veterans have successfully reintegrated into civilian life.

Goode, however, found group therapy through a VA center in California to be valuable, not only for him, but for his wife too. For instance, she would get upset thinking he wasn’t paying attention while dining out when actually he was scanning the room for danger, something he called a “survival mechanism.”

The connection he felt with the men in his platoon remains to this day. “I’ve tracked down almost my entire gun team and a couple of our platoon sergeants,” Goode said. “That’s a bond that lasts a lifetime.”

Phil Goode, photographed by Bruce Roscoe