The Christy Collection

Military Stories and Articles

Maj. Gen. Sidney Shachnow, U.S. Army (1952–1994)

Maj. Gen. Sidney Shachnow, U.S. Army (1952–1994)

Sidney Shachnow was born in Lithuania in 1934, Sidney Shachnow faced oppression in his homeland and found his calling in the U.S. Army after immigrating to America in 1950. Sidney Shachnow enlisted in the military in 1955 and served for more than 39 years, including 32 in the Special Forces community. His top posts included leadership of the John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School and U.S. Army Special Forces Command at Fort Bragg and U.S. Army-Berlin in Germany. "Maj. Gen. Sidney...

read more
Famous Military Unit: USS Liberty

Famous Military Unit: USS Liberty

Three years before President Truman courageously recognized Israel's statehood, the first international leader to do so, the keel of a vessel named SS Simmons Victory was laid down in Portland, Oregon, designated as a Fleet Issue Ship assigned the duty of carrying munitions and general cargo at the end of WWII across the PTO. From the onset of troubles in Korea, the ship made nine Far East voyages in support. The History of USS Liberty By 1964 it had been converted to a Technical Research Ship...

read more
Lost Battalion

Lost Battalion

Immediately after Japan's December 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor and other American bases in the Pacific, the United States declared war on Japan. Several days later Nazi German and Italy declared war on the U.S., embroiling the world into World War II. The war heightened American prejudice against German Americans and Italian Americans but the racism directed against Japanese Americans was particularly vicious. The calculated response culminated in the forced removal and unconstitutional...

read more
Col James Kasler, U.S. Air Force (1950-1975)

Col James Kasler, U.S. Air Force (1950-1975)

James Helms Kasler was born on May 2, 1926, in South Bend, Indiana and following 30-years of distinguished military service, retired as a U.S. Air Force Colonel. Three times James Kasler went off to war and three times returned home. During his career, he is the only person to be awarded three Air Force Crosses. He also was awarded two Silver Stars, Legion of Merit, nine Distinguished Flying Crosses, two Purple Hearts, eleven Air Medals and Bronze Star with V for valor. Setting aside...

read more
Col Pierre Julien Ortiz, U.S.Marine Corps (1942-1954)

Col Pierre Julien Ortiz, U.S.Marine Corps (1942-1954)

The first thoughts that come to mind when one thinks about World War II Marines is them landing on bloody beaches and fighting in steamy jungles of the Pacific. But this was not the role of Marine Pierre Julien Ortiz, who served in Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. His exploits and dare-devil attitude were things of fiction yet they were all real. He was an American and a Frenchman with a Spanish name and he lived in remarkable times and did remarkable things. His life was a series of...

read more
Sergeant Reckless: America’s War Horse

Sergeant Reckless: America’s War Horse

The young filly showed great promise every time she ran a race. Many believed she would be a prize winner. But she never got the chance. In June 1950, North Korean troops stormed across the border between South Korea in a surprise attack that changed life on the Korean Peninsula. It also brought the sport of horseracing to a standstill. With no races to run, owning racehorses became a financial liability for their owners. Like many others, she was abandoned at the Seoul racetrack. A young...

read more
Famous Military Units: 563rd Transportation Company

Famous Military Units: 563rd Transportation Company

The complexion of war has changed significantly through millennia of human conflict and continues to evolve with new technologies and lessons learned on the battlefield. But despite this changing environment, one constant does exist: effective logistics and supply chain integrity can change the tide of battle and determine outcomes. Until World War II, a historical reliance on fixed fortifications led to straightforward solutions for combat support; however, the global scale of conflict and...

read more
Service Reflections of SP 4 Richard Bradley, U.S. Army (1963-1970)

Service Reflections of SP 4 Richard Bradley, U.S. Army (1963-1970)

Until August of 1963, I was planning on going into the Navy and making a career out of it. My father was in the Merchant Marines and then the Navy during World War II. I had read his Blue Jacket’s Manuel 1944 entirely and was determined to become a good sailor.

Then, my older brother came home on leave from Fort Bragg Special Forces Training. He was wearing a tailored Khaki uniform with French Fourragere and Jump Wings. The 82nd Airborne Patch complemented his high gloss Jump Boots. His stories about jump school enamored me. He left on August 9, 1963, back to Fort Bragg.

read more
Sgt Michael Wynn, U.S. Marine Corps (1966-1970)

Sgt Michael Wynn, U.S. Marine Corps (1966-1970)

Michael Wynn is a Marine Sargeant, a four-year USMC volunteer, of First Battalion, Third Marines, hailing from Marion, Ohio who took part in Operation Ballistic Charge near Dai Loc, in Quang Nam Province, South Vietnam. He shared a history of his motivation to join the Marine Corps which was a mixture of patriotism and seeking excitement and adventure. Michael Wynn's Childhood "My name is Mike Wynn and I was born on January 17, 1947. I grew up in Marion, Ohio, and attended Olney Ave....

read more
CSM Patrick Gavin Tadina – Vietnam War’s Longest Continuously Serving Ranger

CSM Patrick Gavin Tadina – Vietnam War’s Longest Continuously Serving Ranger

A 30-year Army veteran who was the longest continuously serving Ranger in Vietnam and one of the war's most decorated enlisted soldiers died. Patrick Gavin Tadina served in Vietnam for over five years straight between 1965 and 1970, leading long-range reconnaissance patrols deep into enemy territory - often dressed in black pajamas and sandals and carrying an AK-47. The retired Command Sergeant Major Patrick Gavin Tadina died May 29, 2020, in North Carolina. He was 77. "Early this...

read more