Army training, then service in Vietnam changed Heard. After his return
to home, the
farm and old acquaintances, he soon found he was unable to settle or
More important, many Australians generally rejected the Vietnam
Moratoriums, rallies, vigorous press and media reporting resulted in
Vietnam Veterans withdrawing or attempting remaining anonymous. Most
were denied access to RSL's and were not allowed to march on ANZAC day.
He married, entering into a successful academic and educational career and for the next 30 years - to the outside world - success was his motto. Yet inside, his own soul was in tatters. Nightmares, the health of Vet mates, suicides and the like continually tortured his emotional state. Until finally, it all combined to result in a terrible emotional breakdown for Heard.
The end result was a lost, low in spirits unemployable old man who in 1997, found himself a patient in the Repatriation mental ward for Veterans at Heidelberg - Melbourne. It was here that a staff member encouraged him to write his story. He did...reluctantly...until he found the writing was therapeutic. The result, a book,
Well Done, Those Men. Being finally published almost a decade later.