"They weren't treated very well," she said.
Now, as an adult, she's volunteering to help returning veterans in her new country.
Golicova, a Rialto resident, is among about 20 volunteers connected with the Fontana Veterans Resource Center, which will have a grand opening and open house Sunday at 16779 Spring St.
Several years in the making, the center is meant to be a one-stop resource center for all veterans' needs, said Danny Marquez, who has been the quarterback behind the concept.
The center and its volunteers will bring expertise on veterans' benefits, health and wellness information, advocacy and referral services.
If you go
At 11 a.m. Sunday
American Legion Post 772 will hold its traditional Veterans Day celebration in the parking lot of 16779 Spring Street.
Immediately following that, the new Fontana Veterans Resource Center will hold its grand opening and open house.
It also aims to serve as a local business incubator, providing resources to further the cause of veteran-owned and veteran-friendly businesses and hiring practices.
Another volunteer, Anita Lynn Rodriguez of Alta Loma, has been certified to help veterans and spouses and children recognize and help deal with post-traumatic stress disorder.
"This is going to be the start of something that is going to be very big," said Fontana City Councilwoman Lydia Salazar Wibert, who has advocated for the resource center at City Hall.
"I don't want today's veterans to be treated like my husband was when he came back from Vietnam," she said.
The veterans center is a step toward something better.
"The grand opening of the Fontana Veterans Resource Center Sunday is a culmination of the efforts and visions of so many - truly a partnership that we hope will bring value for the community and our local veterans," said Marquez, who is finance officer of American Legion Post 772, located immediately to the west of the resource center.
Group leaders envision later establishing transitional facilities, where where veterans coming out of the military can get settled in, get a resume together and go job hunting.
"Many of our veterans are living on the street," said Daniel Vasquez, pastor of Calvary Chapel Fontana, who is among those collaborating with this veterans nonprofit group.
Partners also included the San Bernardino County Department of Veterans Affairs, the Fontana City Council and city staff and various area businesses.
The Home Depot Foundation has contributed $15,000 to help finish part of the group's office space and help with landscaping, Marquez said.
Lowe's and other businesses have made direct contributions as well.
It has subleased space from Water of Life Community Church, which has a lease on the former Fontana Water Co. building, located a short distance west of the Lewis Library & Technology Center in downtown Fontana.
Water of Life personnel will also be involved in helping out at the center, Marquez said.
The group has formed a non-profit Veterans Partnering with Communities Inc.
Through this, the group plans to seek grants and donations to significantly expand its services.
"We are truly blessed to live in such a great community with visionary leaders looking to help the community at all levels through effective collaborative partnerships and improving the quality of life for all," Marquez said.