The passing of General Vo Nguyen Giap, who masterminded the defeats of France and the US, has prompted huge outpourings of grief from war veterans who met and worked with him.

Lieutenant General Le Nam Phong, former Commander of Army Corps No. 1, took part in both struggles against the French and the US .

For Phong, the general is not only the commander-in-chief of the Vietnam People’s Army and a brilliant military strategist, but also a respectable teacher.

“During the war, after each battle, General Giap visited us, shook hands with each soldier and praised us in the way how a father would do to his children,” Phong said.

In his house in Ho Chi Minh City ’s Thu Duc district, Phong designs a place for displaying mementoes of General Giap. He attributed his achievements to the assistance by the general who always paid attention to young soldiers.

Phong added, “All soldiers, including me, always remembered General Giap whenever we faced difficulties and during each campaign. For us, he is an angel and the one we respect all our lives.”

Colonel Hoàng Minh Phương, who had served as General Giap’s assistant for more than 20 years, said that the general was very careful when working and he had devoted himself to the cause of national liberation.

Major General Tran Ngoc Tho, who has met General Giap for 20 times, said all of his memories of the general return lively on these days.

“On October 31, 1965, our regiment was requested to move to the South for fighting. There was a heavy fall of rain on that day. General Giap went to the train station to say goodbye to us. I will never forget the image of the general waving farewell to us when the train was leaving the station,” Tho said.

General Giap passed away in Hanoi on October 4.-VNA