October Luncheon

A Gentlewoman and an Officers' Club

Retired Air Force Lt. Col. Angelica (Angel) Pilato will be the speaker for the Portlandia Club luncheon on October 4, and a fitting one! She was the first woman officer to manage an officers' club, and the first woman to run one in Southeast Asia.

Angel has recently completed a memoir, "Angel's Truck Stop, A Woman's Love, Laughter, and Loss during the Vietnam War." Starting in 1971 at the height of the conflict, she recounts her experiences while stationed at Udorn Air Base in Thailand. There, testosterone-fueled fighter pilots took off on sorties over dangerous targets in North Vietnam. Some came back. Many did not.

Enter Captain Pilato, a starry-eyed idealist, assigned to manage the officers' club. Angel's Truck Stop, as the fighter pilots christened her domain, is the backdrop for the conflicts, challenges, and choices she encountered as a woman struggling to fit into a military man's world. As the realities of war erode her ideals, the dreams Angel held for her future evaporate.

In the Lake Oswego Review/West Linn Tidings, Barb Randall noted that "Angel's Truck Stop" is "an eye-opening account of an era many Americans did not or do not understand, and that many choose to forget. Angelica Pilato pulls no punches. The stories make you laugh and cry, and you are left with a somber appreciation of what is asked of our servicemen and women."


Bookings are closed for this event.