Summer 1986

A great adventure awaited me in Honduras. The U.S. Army was building a road through rough, hilly terrain. The training mission was to teach our engineer units to do this, the PR mission was to make a road so the farmers could more easily get their produce to market. I was a reporter in a public affairs detachment, sent out with a photographer and officer to do an article on this project. We flew in to a base camp via helicopter that gave the officer strong heebie-jeebie memories of Vietnam. It was called Oso Grande, but its amenities were anything but "oh-so grand."

Camp Oso Grande, Honduras

We were accompanied by an interpreter on two separate days of driving around, interviewing the locals. For a college kid from Central Ohio, the hardscrabble villages of Honduras were an eye-opener. The people were invariably friendly, though, and I enjoyed my time quite a bit.

Honduran village

I definitely remember the young kids of Honduras. They clustered around you eagerly, smiling. We took polaroid photographs of them and handed them out, along with various knick-knacks and trinkets. The photographer who accompanied me, John Wagner, took some priceless photographs that went on to win awards. I was pleased with my story, although it did not win any awards that I know of. All in all, going to Honduras with the Army was an interesting opportunity to experience another part of the world that I might not have otherwise.