After leaving Vietnam, in March, 1969, I joined the Wisconsin National Guard. We were called to the riots at the University of Wisconsin. Afterwards, I was transferred to the battalion staff, in preparation for conducting weapons training. I was the only Vietnam vet in the battalion. In those days National Guard units were not called to active duty. They still had WWII era M-1s and BARs. They skipped right over the M-14s and went to the M-16. I conducted the transition training.
At the following two week summer camp, I was assigned to evaluate a rifle company tactical exercise. Each National Guard battalion was assigned a regular army advisor. I am standing out in the woods watching this exercise when a regular army full bird colonel and his sergeant major show up. I informed them of who I was and what I was doing. I was the only one around with a CIB on my uniform. The SMAG had this look on his face like he had made a career out of making junior officers look dumb. (Which isn’t hard to do.) When he is the colonel’s right-hand man you have to take it.
The SMAG looks at me and says… “Lieutenant, have you considered in this type of terrain to get with your battalion communications platoon and consider field expedient methods of extending the range of your radios by attaching one end of a wire to your radio antennas, and the other end to a T R double E?”
Believe it or not, I asked…”What is a T R double E, sergeant major?”
Wait for it.
The sergeant major responded…”A tree, lieutenant, a tree.”