The Christy Collection

Incredible Military Stories 

Vietnam War – LZ Hereford (1966)

Vietnam War – LZ Hereford (1966)

Twenty-three Montagnard mercenaries led by Special Forces Sergeants Burton Adams and David Freeman moved quietly through the front gate of the Vinh Thanh Special Forces camp on May 15, 1966, and slipped into the early morning darkness and light fog. Like other patrols sent out over the past week, they were hoping to find anything that would confirm a captured Viet Cong's claim that a combined North Vietnamese Army/Viet Cong force would soon attack their camp. The patrol members moved to the...

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PO3 Isaac Sidney (Sid) Caesar, U.S. Coast Guard (1939-1945)

PO3 Isaac Sidney (Sid) Caesar, U.S. Coast Guard (1939-1945)

Born in 1922, Caesar was the youngest of three children born to the Ziser family, who were Jewish immigrants who settled in Yonkers, NY. His parents ran a 24-hour luncheonette, and Caesar spent a lot of time around its diverse clientele. From a young age he developed a knack for imitating the cadence and accents of the customers, while speaking in gibberish vaguely reminiscent of their native languages. Caesar himself spoke only English and Yiddish, but could perform this ‘double-talk’, as he...

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Dutch Girl by Robert Matzen

Dutch Girl by Robert Matzen

Twenty-five years after her passing, Audrey Hepburn remains the most beloved of all Hollywood stars, known as much for her role as UNICEF ambassador as for films like Roman Holiday and Breakfast at Tiffany's. Several biographies have chronicled her stardom, but none has covered her intense experiences through five years of Nazi occupation in the Netherlands. According to her son, Luca Dotti, "The war made my mother who she was."  Audrey Hepburn's war included participation in the Dutch...

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Largest Successful Prison Break of The Civil War

Largest Successful Prison Break of The Civil War

On February 9, 1864, more than 100 Union prisoners tunneled their way to freedom in an audacious escape from Libby Prison in the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia. More than half of the prisoners made their way to Union lines while others were recaptured and returned to the confines of Libby. Libby Prison started as an old food warehouse on Tobacco Row along the James River. Captain Luther Libby, along with his son George W. Libby, leased the three-story brick building where they...

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Civil War – Battle of Drewry’s Bluff (1862)

Civil War – Battle of Drewry’s Bluff (1862)

On May 15, 1862, the Battle of Drewry's Bluff, also known as the Battle of Fort Darling, was fought between Union and Confederate forces at a sharp bend on the James River near Richmond, Virginia. Union forces were stationed aboard warships in the river, and Confederate forces were high on a fortified bluff. Richmond was the Confederate capital and vulnerable to attack by the Union Army on land, and by the Union Navy through the navigable James River. In March 1862, Confederate Captain...

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With The Old Breed by E. B. Sledge

With The Old Breed by E. B. Sledge

Sledge's memoir gives a firsthand and unapologetically honest perspective on the Pacific Theater of World War II. His memoir is a front-line account of infantry combat in the Pacific War. It brings the reader into the island hopping, the jungle heat and rain, the filth and malaise, the fear of potential "banzai attacks," and the hopelessness and loss of humanity that so uniquely characterized the campaign in the Pacific. Sledge wrote starkly of the brutality displayed by Japanese soldiers...

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The Tootsie Roll Marines

The Tootsie Roll Marines

On November 26, 1950, 10,000 men of the First Marine Division, along with elements of two Army regimental combat teams, a detachment of British Royal Marine commandos and some South Korean policemen were completely surrounded by over ten divisions of Chinese troops in rugged mountains near the Chosin Reservoir. Chairman Mao himself had ordered the Marines annihilated, and Chinese General Song Shi-Lun gave it his best shot, throwing human waves of his 120,000 soldiers against the heavily...

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SSgt John (Johnny) R. Cash, U.S. Air Force (1950-1954)

SSgt John (Johnny) R. Cash, U.S. Air Force (1950-1954)

The legend who would become Johnny Cash was born in 1932 into the Cash family of poor cotton farmers in Kingsland, Arkansas. Known simply as J.R. growing up, Cash graduated high school in 1950 and joined the US Air Force with the Korean War raging. Unable to sign up under an initial, he gave his name as ‘John R. Cash’. He completed basic training at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, which is the same time he met the young woman that would become his first wife, Vivian Liberto, at a roller rink....

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Korean War – Sacrifice And Survival at Chosin Reservoir (1950)

Korean War – Sacrifice And Survival at Chosin Reservoir (1950)

For 19-year-old Pat Finn, a Minnesota Marine with Item Co, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines, the night seemed colder and darker than any of the others he'd experienced since landing in Korea. His Battalion had just arrived at a desolate, frozen lake he would remember for the rest of his life: the Chosin Reservoir. As the sun went down on November 27, 1950, and temperatures sank to 20 degrees below zero, Marines at Yudam-ni, a small village on the west side of the Chosin Reservoir, hunkered down for...

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The Road Not Taken by Max Boot

The Road Not Taken by Max Boot

In chronicling the adventurous life of legendary CIA operative Edward Lansdale, The Road Not Taken definitively reframes our understanding of the Vietnam War. In this epic biography of Edward Lansdale (1908 - 1987), the man said to be the fictional model for Graham Greene's The Quiet American, best-selling historian Max Boot demonstrates how Lansdale pioneered a "hearts and mind" diplomacy, first in the Philippines, then in Vietnam. It was a visionary policy that, as Boot reveals, was...

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The Last Airborne Deployment of WWII

The Last Airborne Deployment of WWII

In the early morning hours of March 24, 1945, a massive WWII airborne operation known as Operation Varsity launched with an attempt to deploy 17,000 American and British Airborne troops across the Rhine River. It was the largest single-day airborne operation in history. C-47 Transport Planes Release Hundreds of Paratroopers during Operation Varsity. In the final months of WWII, Western Allied Forces advanced east into Germany. This meant crossing numerous rivers, many of which no longer had...

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Call Sign Chaos by Jim Mattis

Call Sign Chaos by Jim Mattis

Call Sign Chaos is the account of Jim Mattis's storied career, from wide-ranging leadership roles in three wars to ultimately commanding a quarter of a million troops across the Middle East. Along the way, Mattis recounts his foundational experiences as a leader, extracting the lessons he has learned about the nature of warfighting and peacemaking, the importance of allies, and the strategic dilemmas - and short-sighted thinking - now facing our nation. He makes it clear why America must...

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Soldier and Writer
Lt Col Michael Christy (USA) Ret.

Many articles contained in this Blog were written by Together We Served’s former Chief Editor, Lt Col Michael Christy, and published in TWS’s Dispatches Newsletter.

Lt Col Christy’s military career spanned 26 years, beginning in 1956 when he joined the U.S. Marine Corps. Following two years active duty, he spent another two years in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves. In 1962, he joined the Army National Guard and in 1966 was called up for active duty with the U.S. Army. After an 18 year distinguished Army career, Lt Col Christy retired from military service in 1984.
Lt Col Christy saw action in Vietnam with Special Forces Units, including the renowned Delta Force, and was awarded two Silver Stars, six Bronze Stars (three with Valor), and two Purple Hearts.
As a military consultant and accomplished writer, Lt Col Christy has contributed to several TV military documentaries, including those found on the History Channel, plus significant military history publications, including Vietnam Magazine.”