R&R and fishing trips

Vietnam soldier by bunkerDear Mom and Dad,

Not much news but I thought I’d drop you a line to tell you everything is fine.

Well I made machine gunner for sure now, that’s all right with me. I sure lucked out for one thing in order to be gunner you start out as ammo bearer then asst gunner then gunner. As gunner you don’t have to dig fox holes or go on details instead you send one of the other two men. Continue reading

Machine gunner at LZ Geronimo

On patrol Vietnam countrysideDear Mom and Dad,

Well here we are at LZ Geronimo (that famous Indian) we came here from LZ English and I think that we will be staying here for about a week because we are getting a new captain. That’s a good thing.

(He spends part of the letter frustrated by loved ones at home who don’t take the time to write to him) If she thinks she has trouble finding time she should be over here, walk up and down mountains all day; dig a foxhole; set up a tent; eat. Continue reading

Bats in the foxhole

Vietnamese villagersDear Dad & Mom,

I don’t know how long this letter will be.  You will hear that in almost every letter I write, but I’ll write as much as I can.

Yesterday we secured a village while the South Vietnam Police went through it. We then made a CA on top of a mountain we set up at the same place that we made the CA. This morning the third platoon came down the mountain (that’s the platoon I’m in) we are now setting up security for the 2nd platoon, which will be coming in on copters from their 24 hours at LZ English. Continue reading

LZ Uplift, Foxholes, and Kool-Aid

I just got done with my 4 days of training Wednesday noon.  They got us up about 6am Tuesday and we walked about 5 miles to our training grounds outside of the barrier we had classes, shot our M-16 rifles, then in late afternoon we started setting up camp for the night.  We had 4 men in each foxhole.  1 man would guard for 1 hour and sleep 3 all night.  Then Wednesday morning we got up about 6 and then went on patrol about 8 for about 3 hours and is that jungle thick and hot.  We then went back to our camp grounds and from there we went and threw 1 grenade and then went back to the base.  As soon as we got back there we were done with our training, so me and another guy went to the PX and then we went to the Red Cross to get some cold kool-aid to drink because it’s hard to get anything cold to drink.  We then went back to our company to clean up and take a shower but when we got there a sergeant said that we were going to leave and go to our company in the field, so we only had about an hour so there went the shower.  The plane was to leave at 3:30PM and so when we go there the plane was leaving so they told us to wait and they’d make a special flight to take us there (6 men). Well they flew us to LZ Uplift (LZ means a landing zone of copters) it’s about 30 miles east of Quy Nhon, on the other side of a mountain is the South China Sea.

We had to pull guard duty here, 3 men to a bunker.  We thought that we would go to our company in the field (this place is only a company base or headquarters, the company doesn’t stay here).  Well the company is on the move so we won’t go to the field until Friday afternoon maybe.

Letter home: 15 June 1967