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Lt. Morrisseau: A Bit About Me

I'm 65 years old and retired.  The 2nd of 5 working class kids born to J. Paul and Dorothy (Peck) Morrisseau, raised and schooled in Burlington,Vermont.  Attended public schools ("gifted" track).  BA in Political Science, U. of Vermont 1965  (scholarship).  I worked my way through college as a Medical Laboratory Technician.  Attended U. of Chicago Law School (scholarship) but dropped out and was swept into the Vietnam era Army.

I wanted to serve my country but had opposed the Vietnam War from its onset, and as an Army Officer finally ordered to duty there, I began to speak against it openly in public in uniform while still stationed stateside.   These events included twice speaking in support of then anti-war Presidential candidate Gene McCarthy at large campaign rallies in Concord, NH and at Dartmouth College.....followed by a one-man vigil in uniform in front of the LBJ Whitehouse (Mar 10, 1968).  I was arrested there but later released.  [pict below]  This event was the first war protest at the Whitehouse by an active duty uniformed
military officer [Kerry's was much later, and after he had been released from active duty] and it received very wide newspaper and television coverage across the country.

Army Second Lieutenant Dennis Morrisseau being arrested in front of LBJ White House while in uniform and carrying a sign: “120,000 American Casualties—WHY?”

---NYTimes, WashingtonPost, CBS News 3/11/68

Days later, I was seized, by military authorities at Ft. Devens, MA, my duty station, and transported under guard, via a small convoy to Hanscomb Army Airfield, where I was ordered to board a special, white, unmarked DC 3 aircraft said to be connecting with a flight bound for Vietnam.  While surrounded by witnessing Army personnel and military police, I twice refused to obey a direct order from my acting CO, LtCol John Cauley to board the plane. They sent the plane away and i was then jailed.

That night I was formally charged with Willful Refusal to Obey a Lawful Order [penalty: 5 years in Leavenworth Federal penitentiary] but my small legal team managed to defeat the Court-Martial. The Army dropped all charges and withdrew my orders to Vietnam.  I was allowed to resign and was discharged "Under Honorable Conditions"  in the Summer of 1968.  I was lucky.  Even though we had a good case and we fought real well, and I helped with all that, I was very lucky to get out of that alive.with no jail time.

I was a candidate for Congress in Vermont a total of 4 times since this incident------3 times as a Democrat in the early 70s (two of these were very close races) and again last year when I ran under the  ballot line:  IMPEACH BUSH NOW  but  lost badly. [Vermont and the national media "DISAPPEARED" me.
I was kept off platforms and out of debates (I usually do very well in these)  literally dozens of
the contest.

In between politics, I developed and ran a small chain of restaurants in Burlington, VT, one of which is still famous long after my tenure, "Leunig's Old World Cafe"........

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