Military Medley

SSgt Desi Arnaz, U.S. Army (1942-1945)

SSgt Desi Arnaz, U.S. Army (1942-1945)

Desi Arnaz who served in the US Army between 1942 and 1945 is perhaps most famous for his starring role as Ricky Ricardo opposite his real-life spouse Lucille Ball in the foundational modern TV sitcom I Love Lucy. Desi was already on his way to becoming a star when he was drafted into the US Army, but his time as a soldier gave him plenty of opportunities to hone his skills not only as a performer, but as a producer. Desi Arnaz’ Military Service Born Desiderio Alberto Arnaz y de Acha III in...

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SA David ‘Sinbad’ Adkins (U.S. Air Force)

SA David ‘Sinbad’ Adkins (U.S. Air Force)

SA David 'Sinbad' Adkins (U.S. Air Force, 1979-1983) is better known for his body of work as a comedian and film & TV actor. Prior to this success, however, Sinbad spent some time in the military. Together We Served examines how a failed basketball prospect became one of the 90s’ most prominent Black comedic actors. Sinbad’s Military Service David 'Sinbad' Adkins born in Michigan in 1956 to a Baptist minister, the young David Adkins graduated Benton Harbor High School in 1974. He visited...

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LTJG Neil Alden Armstrong, U.S. Navy (1949-1952)

LTJG Neil Alden Armstrong, U.S. Navy (1949-1952)

Neil Alden Armstrong who served in the US Navy between 1949 and 1952, is better known as the first man to walk on the Moon. His iconic announcement ‘One small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind,’ and first steps on an extraterrestrial body were broadcast to over 650 million people: around a fifth of the total world population. Armstrong’s path to becoming the most iconic and famous astronaut of all time began near Wapakoneta, Ohio. Neil Armstrong’s Military Career Born on August 5,...

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Last Night I Dreamed of Peace by Dang Thuy Tram

Last Night I Dreamed of Peace by Dang Thuy Tram

The Diary of Dang Thuy Tram At the age of twenty-four, Dang Thuy Tram volunteered to serve as a doctor in a National Liberation Front (Viet Cong) battlefield hospital in the Quang Ngai Province. Two years later, she was killed by American forces not far from where she worked. Written between 1968 and 1970, her diary speaks poignantly of her devotion to family and friends, the horrors of war, her yearning for her high school sweetheart, and her struggle to prove her loyalty to her country. At...

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SOG. The Secret Wars of America’s Commandos in Vietnam by John L. Plaster

SOG. The Secret Wars of America’s Commandos in Vietnam by John L. Plaster

By John L. Plaster John Plaster (The Ultimate Sniper), a retired Army major, served three tours with the secretive "Studies and Observation Group," aka SOG, during the Vietnam War-a background he has put to good use in this authoritative and insightful look at the now-defunct commando unit. Plaster does much to illuminate both this frequently misunderstood group and its extraordinary participants. Made up entirely of volunteers, SOG tackled a wide range of vital and dangerous duties, including...

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Thunder Below! by Admiral Eugene B. Fluckey

Thunder Below! by Admiral Eugene B. Fluckey

The USS Barb Revolutionizes Submarine Warfare in World War II By Admiral Eugene B. Fluckey The thunderous roar of exploding depth charges was a familiar and comforting sound to the crew members of the USS Barb, who frequently found themselves somewhere between enemy fire and Davy Jones's locker. Under the leadership of her fearless skipper, Captain Gene Fluckey, the Barb sank the greatest tonnage of any American sub in World War II. At the same time, the Barb did far more than merely sink...

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Witness to the Storm by Werner T. Angress

Witness to the Storm by Werner T. Angress

By Werner T. Angress On June 6, 1944, Werner T. Angress parachuted down from a C-47 into German-occupied France with the 82nd Airborne Division. Nine days later, he was captured behind enemy lines and, concealing his identity as a German-born Jew, became a prisoner of war. Eventually, he was freed by US forces, rejoined the fight, crossed Europe as a battlefield interrogator, and participated in a concentration camp's liberation. Although he was an American soldier, less than ten years before,...

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Death In The Highlands by Keith Saliba

Death In The Highlands by Keith Saliba

Keith Saliba's book's real-life setting is an isolated, heavily fortified frontier outpost In Vietnam's West-Central Highlands near the Cambodian border and the Ho Chi Minh trail, the main conduit for troops and supplies from North Vietnam. "It was a 20th-century version of the Wild West frontier fortress," Saliba said, in territory Army Special Forces soldiers called "Indian Country"-remote, dangerous. In October 1965, the camp at Plei Me was guarded by a 12-man American Army Special Forces...

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The Outpost by Jake Tapper

The Outpost by Jake Tapper

The Outpost is the heartbreaking and inspiring story of one of America's deadliest battles during the war in Afghanistan, acclaimed by critics everywhere as a classic. At 5:58 AM on October 3rd, 2009, Combat Outpost Keating, located in frighteningly vulnerable terrain in Afghanistan just 14 miles from the Pakistani border, was viciously attacked. Though the 53 Americans there prevailed against 40 Taliban fighters, their casualties made it the deadliest fight of the war for the fight for the...

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Destroyed Military Records. A Disaster with Long-Lasting Repercussions

Destroyed Military Records. A Disaster with Long-Lasting Repercussions

In 1973 a devastating fire in the National Personnel Records Center destroyed about 17 million military personnel files. A loss with long-lasting repercussions, it affects our understanding and knowledge of many individual WWII stories. Here in New Orleans, the destructive power of fire and especially water is well known. Large disasters such as floods, earthquakes, and fires affect our national consciousness, and their devastating power often goes beyond the destruction of buildings and...

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