A veteran of the Vietnam War and former special ops soldier, Glen K. won't describe his missions. He doesn't play coy or make jokes about it. He just won't say. Seated on a curb at the corner of La Jolla Shores Drive and Torrey Pines Road, a wooden cane leaning on his lap and with a scruffy baseball cap pulled over his eyes, he made it very clear that his work in Vietnam was really no one's business but his and the U.S. government's. His work was so secret, he said, that the Veteran's Administration hospital would not give him all of the treatment he required for his war wounds, because his missions weren't in the records.
Wherever he fought, though, Glen still suffers the consequences. He said the VA doctors diagnosed him with post-traumatic stress disorder, plus he knows he took shrapnel in the leg and the back. After leaving the service, Glen worked odd jobs, from commercial fisherman to Harley Davidson motorcycle mechanic. But the bits of metal in his body eventually led to a degenerative disc disorder that made it impossible to do the work he was skilled enough to do.
Glen resorted to crime, he said, and a warrant for his arrest on weapons charges drove him from Arizona to San Diego, where he met Pixie O'Brian (profiled in the Sept. 17, 2007, issue of CityBeat). But after just a few months together, a police officer citing Glen ran his name and discovered the Arizona warrant. Glen was extradited to Arizona, where he served a five-year sentence. Just out of jail in August, he came right back to San Diego, where he found Pixie and the two have been inseparable ever since.
“It's like a love story,” he said.