40 years ago, they tried to kill each other in combat. Now they hold each other’s grandchildren.
Dan Cherry and New Yen Hong Me squared off in a vicious dog fight over Hanoi in 1972. In the heat of battle, Cherry managed to blast the wing off of Hong Me’s jet. Hong Me ejected himself to land safely.
You’d think that would’ve been the last these two saw of each other. Not true.
Four years ago, the pair reunited in Vietnam. They’ve been friends ever since.
Their most recent reunion took place in Minnesota, where Hong Me is in town for the Air Expo at Flying Cloud airport. The pair has been willing to put the past behind them in order to build a solid relationship.
This is the fifth time the duo has met up, with the first reunion taking place in 2008 on a Vietnamese TV show. Cherry has held Hong Me’s grandchild in Vietnam, while Hong Me visited Kentucky to hold Cherry’s grandchild.
The two also shared an emotional visit to the Vietnam War Memorial, where Hong Me teared up. The pair hopes to continue their regular meet-ups in the future.