MF144 Women in the Military

Document Type

Oral History

Interviewee name

Mary Beth Clayfield-Parks


Sarah Kneeland

Interview date


Interview location

Corea, Maine





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Beth Parks, interviewed by Sarah Kneeland, February 16 and 23, 2005, Corea, Maine. Parks talks her experiences in the Vietnam War and how she dealt with it afterwards: reasons for becoming a nurse; training at D.C. General Hospital; volunteering as an officer in the Army Nurse Corps (ANC); Viet Cong tunnels underlying the base camp at Cu Chi; attacks against their camp; operating rooms in the MASH and evacuation hospitals; it was the peak of her career; army vs. civilian nursing; attending the reunion; Annie Cunningham, Glenna Goodacre and Diane Carlson Evans; her film “A Chunk of My Soul”; coping with memories; leaving nursing; the Iraq War and public opinion; James Davis Nelson’s oil painting of the 12th EVAC Hospital operating room. Also included: summary and index of interviews 1 and 2; articles: “A Chunk of My Soul” and “A Vietnam Nurse’s Thanksgiving,” 12th Evac, Cu Chi, RVN; 5 photos. Text: 29 pp. transcript, index, summary, and index, two articles. Time: 00:55:07. Photographs: p14552-p14557. Restrictions: None.


Part 1: mfc_na3328_cd0950_01
Part 2: mfc_na3328_cd0950_02


Military History | Oral History | United States History | Women's History

Birth date

December 27, 1941


Glen Falls, Warren County, New York

Nation of origin

United States

Home state/Territory







Registered nurse; Wildlife biologist; Educator; Photographer

Branch of service

U.S. Army

Service Unit

Women's Army Corps.; 7th Surgical Hospital (MASH); 12th Evacuation Hospital

Dates of service

August 1966-December 1969, Vietnam, October 1966-October 1967

Date of entry

August 1966

Service entry


Location of Service

Cu Chi, Vietnam

Wars & Conflicts

Vietnam War

Entry Rank

O-1 2nd Lieutenant

Highest Rank

O-3 Captain

Exit Rank

O-3 Captain


General Wyatt; Bob Hope; Glenny Goodacre; Diane Carlson Evans; Annie Cunningham; Ken Hickman; Dan Rather; James Davis Nelson; Sharon Nelson; Charlie Campbell; Richard Harder


Washington, D.C.; New York; Saigon, Vietnam; Cambodia; University of Virginia; Texas; Hawaii; Texas Tech University; Saratoga Springs, New York; Albany, New York; San Antonio, Texas; Washington State; Panama; Thailand; Germany; Florida; San Francisco; Oakland, California; Switzerland; Spain; Denmark; Norway; Austria; Greece; Africa


Women in the Military; Viet Cong (VC); Guerrilla Warfare; Mobile Army Surgical Hospitals

Collection name

Women in the Military

Collection number


Item number


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Beth Parks, interviewed by Sarah Kneeland, Part 1



Rights Statement

In Copyright - Non-Commercial Use Permitted