Socialworkersspeaks on FacebookFollow Us on TwitterRSS Feed

Social Worker Advocated for POW Husband

Alice Stratton during the Vietnam War. Photo courtesy of the Beaches Leader.

Alice Stratton during the Vietnam War. Photo courtesy of the Beaches Leader.

Social worker Alice Stratton made her Navy pilot husband Richard Stratton promise not to get himself killed and leave her with three small sons when he went off to the Vietnam War.

Stratton didn’t die but his airplane crashed during a bombing mission and he was held for six years by the North Vietnamese, who kept him in solitary confinement for long periods and tortured him, according to this article in the Florida Times-Union.

Alice Stratton, MSW, turned her worry into action. She and other wives of prisoners of war flew around the country to meet with lawmakers and the President to push for better treatment of their husbands and their release. They also created a National League of Families of POW/MIAs in 1970.

“There is nothing that prepares you for that initial shock,” Stratton told Beaches Leader, another Florida newspaper. “I now belonged to a club I had hoped never to be a member of.  Luckily, I didn’t have to do it alone.”

A recent photo of Alice and Richard Stratton. Photo courtesy of the Florida Times-Union.

A recent photo of Alice and Richard Stratton. Photo courtesy of the Florida Times-Union.

Richard Stratton was released in 1973. Later he earned a master’s degree in social work and like Alice became a licensed clinical social worker. Richard Stratton helped clients overcome post traumatic stress disorder, drug addiction and other issues.

Alice Stratton served as deputy assistant secretary of the Navy for Force Support and Families during the Reagan Administration, traveling to 89 bases around the world.

Richard and Alice Stratton, who are now retired in Florida, were also members of the National Association of Social Workers.

Cheers to Beaches Leader and the Florida Times-Union for telling their story during the Veterans Day holiday.

Social workers often work with members of the armed services, veterans and their families. To learn more, visit the National Association of Social Workers “Help Starts Here” Veterans Affairs website. NASW is also a part of Joining Forces, an initiative created by Dr. Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden, and First Lady Michelle Obama. Joining Forces offers training to social workers interested in working with the military and their families.

 

|   Leave A Comment
Tagged as: , , , , , , , , ,

Advertisement

Leave a Comment