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Old 05-27-2023, 08:47 AM
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Default Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima.

This Marine was a veteran of Iwo Jima,† Chosin Reservoir, AND Vietnam.† Having those particular three experiences has to be a pretty elite club !! I just recently listened to some audio of him talking with a good friend of mine. My friend was doing some work for this veteran's grandson a few years ago. He asked this veteran Marine about his service and then found out just how extraordinary it had been. This veteran was an 18 year old fighting on Iwo Jima. He was a 24 year old fighting in the Chosin Reservoir. In Vietnam he was stationed at Chu Lai.† My friend said he has several hours of audio of this veteran talking with him about his experiences. I requested he send me those audio files and as much information about him as he knows. I want to do what research I can and put together an overview. This Marine was 97 when he passed a few years ago in West Virginia.†I wonder how many Marines in Vietnam could also say ... "Chosin" ? .. "Yep" ...."Iwo" ? ... "Yep" ... WOW !
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Old 05-27-2023, 09:57 AM
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Very few. To have been 18 in 1944, would mean you were born in 1926 and would have been 42 with around 24 years of service in 1968. I did see guys with WWII ribbons and I imagine most Marines who were in WWII served in the Pacific and may well have hit Iwo. I knew 2 guys really well who made multiple landings. One Bill Rambo (really) told my brother and I he was on MT Suribachi when the raised the flag. My brother said you should have joined them , you would be famous. He said all I wanted to do was sit down and smoke a cigarette. Neither stuck around to try their luck in Korea let alone Vietnam.

The number of MEN who made it through the Pacific campaigns, then went on and ended up at Chosen and then stuck around for Vietnam had to be pretty small.
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Old 05-27-2023, 10:36 AM
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Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima.  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steelslaver View Post
Very few. To have been 18 in 1944, would mean you were born in 1926 and would have been 42 with around 24 years of service in 1968. I did see guys with WWII ribbons and I imagine most Marines who were in WWII served in the Pacific and may well have hit Iwo. I knew 2 guys really well who made multiple landings. One Bill Rambo (really) told my brother and I he was on MT Suribachi when the raised the flag. My brother said you should have joined them , you would be famous. He said all I wanted to do was sit down and smoke a cigarette. Neither stuck around to try their luck in Korea let alone Vietnam.

The number of MEN who made it through the Pacific campaigns, then went on and ended up at Chosen and then stuck around for Vietnam had to be pretty small
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WOW, one hell of a resume!
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Old 05-27-2023, 12:00 PM
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In Dayton, OH I met the widow of a guy who flew Sikorsky R-4s (1st helicopter used in combat) in China, H-13s in Korea, and flew with Air America in Vietnam. I wish I could have met the man himself. I tried to buy his Air America 18Kt ID bracelet but that was a no-go. Throughout his career with the AVG, AA, etc. he was in a dual status situation with the USAF and eventually retired from the Air Force at WPAFB. She did give me many of his things and sold me several of his guns, including the Remington Rand 1911A1 that he carried in the RVN. I still have it. Saw his pilot log book and a roster of every pilot working for AA of that era along with many other artifacts. The stories that man could have told.

Just a couple things she gave me.
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Old 05-27-2023, 12:06 PM
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A while back, knew the Army Col. Assigned to Nellis AFB.
He liked to say, Iím quite familiar with TacAir.
I was attacked by it in War Two, Korea and Vietnam.
All three times it was Friendly Aircraft.
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Old 05-27-2023, 12:37 PM
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Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima.  
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That is some serious combat time. My old rifle team coach was also a triple dipper. WWI, WWII, and Korea. Great men!
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Old 05-27-2023, 01:48 PM
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Not only the odds of serving in all three places are small. The odds of surviving have to be tiny.
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Old 05-27-2023, 10:54 PM
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My active duty years were 1968 to 1972. Lots of WW2 veterans still on active duty, mostly senior NCOs and field grade officers finishing up their 30 years for max pension benefits. Also lots of Korea veterans still working on 20 for basic retirement. Some of the senior NCOs had been officers in WW2 and/or Korea and reverted to "permanent" enlisted rank to continue in service during reductions in force. One old chief warrant officer had been a WW2 Navy chief petty officer, then switched over to the Army.

Knew one old master sergeant in Vietnam who served in WW2, Korea, Dominican Republic, and Vietnam. Single man, kept extending his Vietnam tours and taking the free 30-day leaves to look after a small hotel he owned in Taipei, Taiwan where he planned on retiring. Took a liking to me for some reason, probably because I never whined when I lost in a poker game. The poker losses were minor compared to what I could learn from a bunch of crusty old "top three stripers" about how the Army really worked.

One old mess sergeant, staff sergeant E6, was a WW2 veteran with the Medal of Honor, finishing out his 30 years as a stone-cold alcoholic. Lots of complaints about his mess hall, but I doubt anyone ever had much to say to him about it. He came and went as he pleased, letting the first cook do all the work. Everyone understood that he was just waiting for the calendar to roll over to his 30th.

When I go to the VFW now I'm one of the old timers, Vietnam veterans in our 70s and 80s. I know one old boy who flew fighters in WW2, still comes in for a beer or two. A few Korea veterans show up now and then. Mostly Iraq, Afghanistan now, and lots of female veterans (our state commander is a female retired Army sergeant major, post commander is a retired Army first sergeant, one of the first US Army Special Forces guys stops in regularly). Interesting company.
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Old 05-27-2023, 11:43 PM
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One of the finest soldiers I ever knew (and I knew many) was Sergeant-Major Paul HUFF. Got the MOH for his efforts at Anzio, served in Korea (don’t know too much about that portion of his service) and then went to Vietnam with the 101st. Airborne in 1967 with the 3rd Brigade (by that time I was already out, having been with the 1st Brigade).
Well remember when I got to the Division in mid 1963 and was greeted by Col. Wolfe, along with SGM Huff. The Col. spent some time telling us new guys the rule and what was expected of us. After each rule was explained the Col. would then say “…of course, that doesn’t apply to Sgt-Major Huff as he can do whatever the hell he wants.”
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Old 05-28-2023, 12:21 AM
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One of my best friends growing up was a Marine at Khe Sahn. (sp?) He did two tours in Nam before he got out and worked at and retired a the local fire department. The only thing he told me about his military service was he turned down three purple hearts. He said those were for dead guys and refused to wear them even though he did wear a bronze star with the "V". He managed to stay with the fire department long enough to retire, but not much longer. He passed away from service connected problems in a veterans home in Collins. Ms. a few years ago. He had a girl that did him wrong the whole time he was in the service. She's still around and I still don't like her.
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Old 05-28-2023, 04:25 AM
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Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima. Marine veteran of Vietnam, Chosin Reservoir, AND Iwo Jima.  
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That is a pretty amazing military career. Looking forward to the audio conversations.
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Old 05-28-2023, 07:10 AM
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We called him Mach 4. CW4 Dan Mauch served in Korea and flew F-4s in Viet Nam then switched to the Army to fly helicopters. I took this picture of him in the skys over Panama right before he retired. He was the epitome of what my old friend Paul Fretts called the "squared jawed, steely eyed warrior". RIP Brother.
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Old 05-28-2023, 08:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MG34/bar View Post
One of the finest soldiers I ever knew (and I knew many) was Sergeant-Major Paul HUFF. Got the MOH for his efforts at Anzio, served in Korea (donít know too much about that portion of his service) and then went to Vietnam with the 101st. Airborne in 1967 with the 3rd Brigade (by that time I was already out, having been with the 1st Brigade).
Well remember when I got to the Division in mid 1963 and was greeted by Col. Wolfe, along with SGM Huff. The Col. spent some time telling us new guys the rule and what was expected of us. After each rule was explained the Col. would then say ďÖof course, that doesnít apply to Sgt-Major Huff as he can do whatever the hell he wants.Ē
CSM Huff was a corporal in the 509th Airborne when he won the
MOH during the fighting around Anzio. I served in the 509th in Germany and Italy in the 70s and spent many a long duty night going through a copy of the unit's WWII history, in which Corporal Huff figured prominently.
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Old 05-28-2023, 09:31 AM
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[quote=steelslaver;

The number of MEN who made it through the Pacific campaigns, then went on and ended up at Chosen and then stuck around for Vietnam had to be pretty small.[/quote]

It irritates me immensely to see in movies and such when some people refer to Marines, soldiers, sailors, airmen, coast guardians, and merchant mariners as BOYS.
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Old 05-28-2023, 10:32 AM
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My first maintenance chief back in '71 was a tall, very lean E-9 with Coke-bottle glasses. He was a Bataan Death March survivor. When he spoke, Colonels listened.
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Old 05-28-2023, 11:55 AM
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I worked for a chain smoking, scotch drinking former enlisted Marine who was 1st Marine Div from Inchon landing to Chosin reservoir. He was Chesty Puller's communications (radio) sergeant. Lots of stories.
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Old 05-28-2023, 06:31 PM
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The CO of the 2nd Army pistol team stationed at Ft. Jackson. SC in 1960 was a full bird Colonel who, on his right sleeve had the thin yellow ribbon that said "Merrill's Marauders". Everyone listened to what he said.

Stu
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Old 05-30-2023, 08:01 AM
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Ya, in the Marine Corps having the MOH would mean you could do pretty much what ever you wanted. In the movie Heartbreak Ridge with Clint Eastwood, the officers should have been saluting Gunny Hathaway, NOT the other way around. The number of enlisted Marines, who survived the action which they EARNED (not won) the MOH, is very low.

My first father in law was a very slight quiet gentleman, who had a Singer Sewing Machine shop. His wife definitely ran the show. Imagine my surprise when staying there while home on leave from the Corps, down in the basement of their home, I found a Army staff NCO dress uniform with a sliver star ribbon on the very top of the ribbons. When asked, my wife informed me, that yes, it was her dads. She didn't have a clue what that meant or said about her father.

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Old 05-30-2023, 11:19 AM
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My Dad enlisted in 1950. Was not sent to Korea during the "hot" years, since his unit, 508th Airborne Regimental Combat Team, was not called up to jump into combat there. He did serve in Korea 1960-61, and then Vietnam 1970-71.


I post this due to the fact that he is now at hospice at home, age 90, and will probably depart this life in a few short days or weeks.
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Old 05-30-2023, 11:35 AM
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Default He has definitely seen some action........

I've always tried to befriend vets and get them to tell their stories. I knew a guy like Forest Gump who happened to be everywhere something was happening, including Iwo Jima.

Then I hit a gold mine, when I went to a tech school a lot of my classmates were vets, from WWII to Vietnam.

My FIL saw a LOT of action in WWII. Things like Victory ships trying to break in two in the North Atlantic, almost getting torpedoed and kamikazied at Okinawa, and having to go fight fire and clean up a ship that did get kamikazied.

A navy man who was on the Cochina when it sank in the Berents sea from exploding batteries. The exec was in the battery room when a blast went off. He said he could see fire shooting out of the seal around the hatch. They thought he was dead, but he came out, burned but alive. The Tusk came alongside to evacuate without a single casualty on the Cochina. But the Tusk lost 6 people who got washed overboard, drowned wearing 'survival suits' that floated upside down.

Many of the stories were humorous, I'll leave out the details.

Hats off to these men who served.
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Old 05-30-2023, 12:07 PM
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I post this due to the fact that he is now at hospice at home, age 90, and will probably depart this life in a few short days or weeks.[/QUOTE]

My dad was in WWII and Korea. Passed on Memorial Day a few years ago.
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Old 05-30-2023, 12:09 PM
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I was doing mostly routine medical transports back in the 1990's for our hospital's ambulance service. I routinely asked the men (of that age) what they did during WW2. One gentleman said he was on a minesweeper in the Pacific. He went on to say that after the war he came back and completed his college on the GI bill. His goal was to become a Navy pilot. He reenlisted and went to Naval flight school and accomplished that goal. He then asked me if I knew what plane a Skyhawk was (I did ) He said that was mostly what he had flown off carriers. He then added he became the flight officer and later the captain of a carrier. Well... THAT story dropped my jaw !! I only had that short time with him and did not run across him again. In that pre-computer and Google time I had no way to do any research and did not make note of his name. I would love to know who that was now !?
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