In 1966 Jean Debelle was 26 and working as a newspaper journalist for the Adelaide Advertiser when she volunteered to work for the Red Cross in the Vietnam War as a welfare worker with the troops. Jean spent a year caring for wounded ANZAC troops (from June 1966 until June 1967) in Vung Tau, Vietnam. Jean fulfilled another year for the Red Cross in Butterworth, Malaysia, and then returned home to Australia to work as a journalist for the Sydney Morning Herald, the Women's Weekly, Editor of the now defunct Woman's World, and co-Editor of Woman's Day with Jerry Lacey, until Fairfax sent her to New York in 1980. She retired in 1995 after eleven years as an executive at Ziff-Davis Publishing in New York where she maintained international editions of PC Magazine and other computer titles. Jean married Jack Lamensdorf in the US and now lives in Pennsylvania. She occasionally speaks to local groups (sometimes as many as 300 people at a time) about Australia and Vietnam.