The US Naval Ship General Nelson M. Walker was one of three ships that took the US Army’s 4th Infantry Division to Vietnam in 1966. On July 21, 1966 the 1st Battalion of the 22nd Infantry Regiment sailed on the Walker from Tacoma, Washington and sixteen days later, on August 6, 1966, landed at Qui Nhon, Republic of South Vietnam. The Regulars who sailed on the Walker are affectionately known as the “Boat People” and the “Walker Babies”.
Graffiti found on the General Nelson M. Walker’s berthing units represents the most honest expression of the writer’s feeling at the moment written. Musings of home town, love, women, anxiety, military pride, the 1960’s, humor and folk art-like drawings express a soldier’s or Marine’s personal feelings and aspirations, likes and dislikes. The graffiti also indicates how a person felt in the middle of a vast ocean, facing an uncertain future.