WELCOME to THE IVY DIVISION Message Forum I'm not sure that a forum like this is even needed nowadays since the advent of facebook, etc...but I hope that this once thriving BB does bring some of us back together again and that maybe some new folks will join us as well!
THIS website is a private SUPPORT SITE for 4th ID veterans, active duty soldiers, family members, friends and everyone who supports our troops no matter how you feel about our leaders. Troublemakers, gossips. trolls, liars, etc are NOT welcome here. Posts that defame,, humiliate and/or intimidate other posters or the webmaster will be deleted without notice or comment. Please read the rules on the Main Page, thank you!
This forum has a long history, by interent standards anyway-unfortunately it has been abandoned for far too long due to real life circumstances knocking the heck out of what had been my very real desire to keep this board alive and well forever so that all of us could meet here and communicate with each other everyday.
Thank You for Visiting The Ivy Division.com!
Open 24 Hours a Day, 365 Days a Year
Friends of The Ivy Division
jinks' www.vietnamvets.com messageboard
Jim Bury's Ivy Dragoons website
Redleg's 4ID Forum
I'm not sure that a forum like this is even needed nowadays since the advent of facebook, etc...but I hope that this once thriving BB does bring some of us back together again and that maybe some new folks will join us as well!
I was pretty scared several times in Vietnam, but I don't think it
ever got in the way of my doing what I was told to do. I believe I
was most chicken once while on a convoy heading through the Mang Yang
Pass. We were headed to stand-down in An Khe. Sin City was waiting
for us. We had been on a terrible mission along the border. Then word
was passed back to us that B-40's had been fired at the convoy before
us. The idea of sitting in the back of a deuce and a half, and
getting killed, after taking hills that the NVA owned, just didn't
seem right. I wanted to be back in the world.
Big hug to you ....so sorry you had such an experience....thank you to you and all your brothers.
Tom: I notice that the fear you mentioned was in anticipation of a mission. I seem to recall that my most fearful momments were also in anticipation. Once the sh*t actually hit the fan training, or adrenalyn, or whatever, seemed to kick in, and we didn't think about it.
I once had a dream, in 'Nam, that scared the crap out of me. I woke up trembling, in a cold sweat.
Remember we all lived in fear out there and I believe
that fear kept us alert at all times and alive.
Yeah,I was always fearful enough to be alert, but still able to function. Sitting on that truck there was nothing much I could do. I was used to walking through the jungle with my rifle ready. On the truck, I had gotten myself into a relaxed mode, put the war on another burner, and then all of the sudden, I had to deal with the reality of the situation. I was still in Vietnam.
Although being a Tanker and not a grunt, I agree with Doc, Fear from anticipation has got to be at the top of my list. That's something that has haunted me for many years.
After you take the Tank over roads that you know have been mined in the past, you know that sooner or later your going to hit one. Sometimes you don't hit one and your nerves are all on edge. Then when that day does come, it scares the crap out of you but strangely I felt a certain relief and almost Happiness after the event. This happens enough and you begin to hate any kind of a surprise for the rest of your life.
This can be a problem in later life. I go fishing here in the Florida back woods a lot and I still find myself gritting my teeth and getting sweaty palms and a fast heartbeat that will sometimes start skipping on me, when just driving my truck over the bumpy dirt roads. We all know that no Mines are there, but try telling my Brain that.
Threw my life after Nam, Anticipation has caused both myself and the average unsuspecting
JohnQ many Problems.
Tom, I spent about 4 months responsible for that section of road - from the Mang Yang Pass to LZ Action. We did counter-ambush, patrolling the area, etc. Lots and lots of contact. It was a very reasonable place to be uncomfortable about.
Like Bill said, my noticeable (to me) fear occurred when I thought, or in some cases knew, that it was about to get deep. Once the first round went off, I went to work - no time to worry about anything else.
During my second tour,while I was on R&R my ARVN Ranger Bn went up to the Ranger Training Center north of Nha Trang for some additional training. I knew that they would be there when I got back to Nam, so when I got to Tan Son Nhut. I started begging rides north instead of going back to the Delta.
Unfortunately, unknown to me, there was a huge ARVN the ARVN expedition into Cambodia that made pretty much all Huey's unavailable. So I hitched a ride with a convoy. I got to Cam Rahn okay, but was stuck there until I got word that a White Horse (Korean) outfit was taking a convoy right by my destination.
As it turned out, they turned off HWY 1 about 6 miles short of the Ranger Training Center - and they dropped me off at a civilian bus stop at the intersection. No facilities except a couple of carts selling Viet Namese refreshments and a folding table with 2 chairs.
I sat out there right by my lonesome, drinking tea and wondering what the hell I was going to do when it got dark. Fortunately, after about 2 hours a couple of ARVN Rangers came by in a jeep and saw me sitting there. "Hey Dai Ui, you waiting for bus?"
I do not mind saying that I got more than a little uncomfortable sitting there.
Well as I see it, if anyone did not live in fear in that place, then I think it is not the same place I'm thinking of. 6 KIA in less than 60 days in country.
D 3/21 196th. God bless Their soles. damn right it was fear!
Battalion Company Date Last Name First Name Mil Grade HomeCity Ho
3/21 D 11/19/69 Bachman Roger 1LT WESTFIELD NJ
3/21 D 1/7/70 Bradley Larry CPL VERHALEN TX
3/21 D 1/7/70 Erkes William 2LT UPPER BLACK EDDY PA
3/21 D 1/7/70 Retseck John PFC MICHIGAN CITY IN
3/21 D 1/7/70 Wells Gene SSGT PULASKI KY
3/21 D 1/7/70 Zydzik Frank SP4 PHILLIPS
I watched a PBS military special about the Medal of Honor, and a medal winner who served in VN stated that he thought fear was not a weakness, but was a tool that one could use to his advantage which helped one to stay alive, as long as one was not taken over by it.
I myself have never served in combat, and have no idea how any of you could tolerate being sent into combat, far from home.
You all have my respect!
Tom, I was a Huey slick crew chief with the 119th AHC, made it home exactly 40 years ago.
The way we coped, I called "deciding to die." Whether our mission was dustoff, ammo resupply, extraction, whatever, I would look at a hot LZ, smoke, flames, tracers bouncing all over the place, and think to myself, "If we go in there, I am not coming out alive." Then I would decide to do it anyway. You just accept your certain fate and get on with the business at hand. I do not understand it.
One "Tac-E" ammo resupply late at night, deep in the Plei Trap Valley, one of your units was under attack and running out of ammo. It was easy to find them, everything was on fire. Our pilot looked at the tracers, explosions, and fire in and around the LZ and said to the rest of us, "Guys, if we go in there, we are not going to make it out. Are you ready to spend the night down there?" No hesitation, everybody said, "Let's go." He said, "Okay, get your stuff together and get ready to unass the ship with your weapons and ammo. Kilpatrick, your job is to pull me out of the wreck." We got in, dropped the ammo, loaded some wounded, and got out without taking a single hit. An absolute miracle.
Very hard for me to explain or understand, but as sure as I was that I was not going to make it home from Vietnam alive, when we left Camp Holloway each day, I was just as sure that it was not going to happen "today," whatever day that was.
CE, Gator 834, 1969
Comrades gather because they long to be with the men who once acted at their best; men who suffered and sacrificed, who were stripped of their humanity. I did not pick these men. They were delivered by fate and the military. But I know them in a way I know no other men. I have never given anyone such trust. They were willing to guard something more precious than my life. They would have carried my reputation, the memory of me. It was part of the bargain we all made, the reason we were so willing to die for one another. As long as I have memory, I will think of them all, every day. I am sure that when I leave this world, my last thought will be of my family and my comrades. Such good men."
>>> -- Author Unknown --
>>>BE STRONG, BE WELL................
>>> "THE NATION WHICH FORGETS ITS DEFENDERS WILL ITSELF BE FORGOTTEN"
>>> "LIBERTY AND FREEDOM ARE THE RESULTS OF ETERNAL VIGILANCE"
>>> "FREEDOM IS NOT FREE"
Jeffro, that quote had its origin with Michael Norman, in his book "These Good Men:"
"These Good Men"
These Good Men"I now know why men who have been to war yearn to reunite. Not to tell stories or look at old pictures. Not to laugh or weep. Comrades gather because they long to be with the men who once acted their best, men who suffered and sacrificed, who were stripped raw, right down to their humanity.
"I did not pick these men. They were delivered by fate and the U.S. Marine Corps. But I know them in a way I know no other men. I have never given anyone such trust. They were willing to guard something more precious than my life. They would have carried my reputation, the memory of me. It was part of the bargain we all made, the reason we were so willing to die for one another.
"I cannot say where we are headed. Ours are not perfect friendships; those are the province of legend and myth. A few of my comrades drift far from me now, sending back only occasional word. I know that one day even these could fall to silence. Some of the men will stay close, a couple, perhaps, always at hand.
"As long as I have memory, I will think of them all, every day. I am sure that when I leave this world, my last thought will be of my family and my comrades.....such good men."
from "These Good Men" by Michael Norman