Aircraft carrier USS Enterprise, CVAN-65, cruises in the clear blue water of the Gulf of Tonkin off the shores of Vietnam. May 28th, 1966 (U.S. Navy/National Archives)
I have always and publically stated that the true heroes serving with Charlie Company were our medics. The infantryman is trained to take cover and return fire. The medic is trained to provide aid to the wounded and mostly there is no cover while they are providing aid. The medics of Charlie Company did no less than the Vietnam Medal of Honor Recipients who were combat medics.
The Medal of Honor is the Nation’s highest award for valor. Fifteen Army medics received the Medal of Honor during the Vietnam War.
The nonsoldier doesn’t know what a firebase is and to explain it I went to the internet to get some information. So here is the story:
A fire support base (FSB, firebase or FB) is a military encampment designed to provide indirect fire artillery fire support to infantry operating in areas beyond the normal range of direct fire support from their own base camps.
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An FSB was normally a permanent encampment, though many were dismantled when the units that they supported moved. Their main components varied by size: small bases usually had a battery of six 105 millimeter or 155mm howitzers, a platoon of engineers permanently on station, a Landing Zone (LZ), a Tactical Operations Center (TOC), an aid station staffed with medics, a communications bunker, and a company of infantry. Large FSBs might also have two artillery batteries, and an infantry battalion. Continue reading
During the Vietnam War, Red Cross workers provided services to U.S. military personnel and assisted Vietnamese refugees (1962-1974). In 1962, the American Red Cross sent its first paid field staff to Vietnam to assist the growing number of servicemen at various bases and hospitals. At the height of its involvement in 1968, 480 field directors, hospital personnel, and recreation assistants served throughout Southeast Asia. Red Cross workers, who provided 1.9 million services to U.S. military personnel, shared the hardships and privations of war with the soldiers. Five Red Cross staff members gave their lives, and many others were injured as they helped servicemen resolve personal problems or get home when emergency leave was granted due to death or serious illness in their immediate family. Continue reading
Vietnam War veterans recount their experiences and reflect on their memories of the conflict from five decades ago. For many service members, these experiences still feel like they happened yesterday.
This is not the story of the Vietnam War, but of the men and women who went to Southeast Asia to serve their country. In the voices of a few resonate the stories — each unique, each profound — of the three million who served, the ones who didn’t return and those who passed away before their stories could be told.
SAN DIEGO (AP) September 20, 2013 — Two Vietnam veterans were awarded the Silver and Bronze Star medals Friday for their courage in a battle on a jungle hillside where more than 75 percent of the troops with them that day were killed or wounded.
Navy Secretary Ray Mabus said in his citation to the president that Joe Cordileone and Robert Moffatt showed extraordinary heroism during the first Battle of Khe Sanh in 1967. Marine Brig. Gen. James Bierman apologized to the veterans for the 46-year-wait, saying “I’m sorry that it took so long for these awards to work their way around to you.” Continue reading