U.S. Army

Memorable experience: I joined in January, and got out in May of 66, with a medical discharge, back injury. I didn’t try to get out, and asked for no money, but looking back, I was fortunate. All I wanted to do was go to Viet Nam, but I now know it would have changed me for the worse, if I did come back. My best buddy was killed, Steve Skeen and a couple others were also, as you know well. Steve was a great guy.

I was only an E-1 private, assigned to Westpac deployment in the 5th Marine Division. My most memorable experience is not very vivid, all I did was train. Parris Island was tough, my platoon got the highest percentage in all phases of training since any platoon since 1913. That was because we had the most discipline from our senior Drill Instructor, and we were terrified to screw up. I did qualify 2nd high man out of 84 on the rifle range, and was allowed to apply for scout sniper school, but didn’t because I really didn’t want to be a sniper, and be separated from my friends.