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 > Reminiscing...harrowing Experiences in the Military

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mr. ed

Amarillo, Texas

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Posted: 12/29/20 10:39pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Back in the 60’s i wound up in Vietnam with the Marines. I’ have many memories of situations that were close to fatal, just like anyone who has been involved in warfare.
Here are two instances:

1. I was with a group of about 5 or 6 other Marines. It was night and we were on our way to a location to set up an ambush. We got to the location and I sat down. At almost the same instant, the fellow just an arms length away to my left set off an anti personnel device and dropped to the ground. Although he was only a few feet away, I was completely unharmed. The only thing I can figure is the explosive blast traveled in an upward direction and went over my head. Unfortunately, my companion was badly injured. For some reason, we didn’t have any medical supplies, although they probably wouldn’t have helped as his injuries were quite severe. Won’t go into detail. We couldn’t get a medical chopper to come in, either. This poor fellow survived until morning, all the while yelling “where’s that chopper”. We tried to quiet quiet him and were concerned that any VC nearby would discover our position. We managed to get his body back to our starting location, but that incident impressed on me how just being a few feet away from a spot could make a difference between life and death.

2. This time I was at our base in Khe Sahn, a stone’s throw from the DMZ. The NVA (North Vietnamese Army) were so close we could see them and they, us. They harassed us constantly with various ordnance, such as rockets. We had built underground bunkers for protection from the attacks. However, I preferred to sleep above ground in the large supplies tent next to the bunker. One night the NVA launched a rocket attack. I could hear the explosions getting closer and closer to my tent when I suddenly decided it wasn’t a good idea to stay above ground. Problem was, it was pitch dark in the tent and I couldn’t find my way out. Eventually, as the rockets got closer, I managed to escape and dove into the bunker. Come daylight I saw that the tent next to me had received a direct hit and some Marines had gotten killed (they also decided to stay above ground)

To this day, I find it hard to understand how I got out of that country alive. My experience there also taught me how wasteful and foolish wars are. Too bad they’re a fact of life in this world. The war in Vietnam was especially wasteful as nothing was gained.

* This post was edited 12/30/20 06:07pm by mr. ed *


Mr. Ed (fulltiming since 1987)
Life is fragile. Handle with prayer.

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wa8yxm

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Posted: 12/30/20 04:17am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Some days you have to consider the old line "Somebody up there likes you alive"

Part of your title is: Dangerous Experiences in the Military

Just being in the Military is a dangerous exprience for you can be called upon any time to put your life on the line for folks you have never even met.

It is written "no greater love hath any man than to give his life for a friend"

I believe that is not 100% accurate for you put your life on the line for people you have never even met yet. and that's the greater love.

I tried.. but alas 4F (Hypertension)


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jetboater454

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Posted: 12/30/20 05:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Not near as bad as yours. But when President Regan was on open mic and made the comment about we begin bombing in 5 minutes,our Pershing missile base went high alert quick. Luckily we just came off of CAS site so it was just guarding our missiles. Battery on site went actual launch code alert.


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mr. ed

Amarillo, Texas

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Posted: 12/30/20 09:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

wa8yxm wrote:

Some days you have to consider the old line "Somebody up there likes you alive"

Part of your title is: Dangerous Experiences in the Military

Just being in the Military is a dangerous exprience for you can be called upon any time to put your life on the line for folks you have never even met.

It is written "no greater love hath any man than to give his life for a friend"

I believe that is not 100% accurate for you put your life on the line for people you have never even met yet. and that's the greater love.

I tried.. but alas 4F (Hypertension)


I hope you've gotten your medical condition under control, friend.

When I got back to the states I suffered a serious auto accident, which I mentioned in a previous thread. Since I received no injuries jn Vietnam, it would appear that being in the US was the greater danger. Of course that's not completely true. Bad things can happen wherever you are.

I had a small group of friends (maybe 4 or 5 of us) who were also in Vietnam. I'm the only one who survived, so yes, The thought, "someone up there likes me", came to mind and still does today. [emoticon]

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Posted: 12/30/20 10:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

..............

* This post was edited 12/31/20 01:41am by down home *

wa8yxm

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Posted: 12/30/20 02:49pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mr. ed wrote:


I hope you've gotten your medical condition under control, friend.


Well the Hypertension was diagnosed when I was about what 19/20 years old and I'm about 70 now so..... But I still take med's to control and have a few other issues.. Also controlled and monitored.. (next DR's appointment next Month, Routing follow up appt) this is part of the reason I was not all that upset when Insurance said the Semi driver did just enough damage to call my motor home "TOTALED".

* This post was edited 12/30/20 03:48pm by an administrator/moderator *

mr. ed

Amarillo, Texas

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Posted: 12/30/20 06:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Wa8yxm, glad to hear you’re doing ok at 70. Sorry to hear of the destruction of your motor home. Did you escape injury?

down home

south

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Posted: 12/30/20 07:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

..............

* This post was last edited 12/31/20 01:43am by down home *   View edit history

MEXICOWANDERER

las peñas, michoacan, mexico

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Posted: 12/31/20 11:42am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Being a smartass and not waiting 5 hours for one of our boats cost me an overnight in a rice paddy on the Bassac River. The longest 9 hours of my life. It was the dry season and I had played the part of courier. While there a Master chief took offense at my cut off dungarees and Aussie bush hat. Our black berets were hot and expensive and the bush hat provided some shade.

What screwed me up was an intersecting ditch which was deep so I hiked around it then the sun set. One did not walk atop paddy dikes. I had the obligatory ACP and webbing. Small comfort when it's pitch black and imaginary squads could be heard nearby. Turned out to be a water bull that had somehow escaped being herded the day before. Banded Kraits hunted at night. I had all the fear wrung out of me that night. I finished trudging the next morning and then had my butt chewed by our CPO. We were in a free fire zone and only luck saved me that night.All except for a hundred mosquito bites but somehow no leeches.

mr. ed

Amarillo, Texas

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Posted: 01/01/21 12:38pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I don’t remember having trouble with mosquitoes in the parts of Vietnam where I was located. I do remember coming across some really large other types of vermin, such as the huge scorpion we found in the supply tent where I slept at night; made me glad I slept off the ground on a cot

There were also humongous centipedes with large, scary looking fangs. One of the guys caught one and tethered it to a long string. He Would take it for walks, like it was his pet dog. One day, He was taking his “pet” for a walk and,as I happened to be driving a Jeep, I decided to be mean and ran his centipede over. I don’t remember his reaction, but I was glad to be rid of that ugly thing! [emoticon]

* This post was last edited 01/02/21 05:30am by mr. ed *   View edit history

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