The Christy Collection

Military Stories and Articles

OSCS Larry Tucker, U.S. Navy (1956-1977)

OSCS Larry Tucker, U.S. Navy (1956-1977)

What was the biggest personal challenge that you encountered during your military service? How did you approach and overcome this?:

Early in my career, I received a recommendation for the Naval Aviation Cadet program, a golden ticket to becoming a pilot. The skies beckoned, and I eagerly pursued my dream. However, fate had other plans. Dental issues stood between me and the cockpit, and I found myself grounded. The Navy pilot wings eluded me, but destiny had a different flight path in mind.

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Cpl David Mulldune, U.S. Marine Corps (1967-1969)

Cpl David Mulldune, U.S. Marine Corps (1967-1969)

What was the biggest personal challenge that you encountered during your military service? How did you approach and overcome this?:

Upon arriving in Vietnam, I was assigned to India Company, 3rdBattalionn, 27th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division. I had only been in Vietnam for about three to four weeks when word came down that we would leave to go on Operation Allen Brook. During briefing, we were told that Go Noi Island was serving as a staging area for NVA units preparing for attacks against Danang. Intelligence wasn’t sure of the exact enemy numbers but figured it to be around the strength of the battalion (approximately 1,000 men). Upon reaching our objective, we came under heavy attack and, at one point, were encircled by several NVA units.

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SP4 Tom Hirst, U.S. Army (1969-1971)

SP4 Tom Hirst, U.S. Army (1969-1971)

What was the biggest personal challenge that you encountered during your military service? How did you approach and overcome this?:

I know this will sound crazy, but when I got drafted in 1969, I was 20 years old and a VEGETARIAN! I didn’t smoke, drink or eat meat. Meat was something that had never been prepared at my home, and I was pretty sure that “à la carte” wasn’t on the menu! I was sent to Ft. Sam Houston for Basic Training & AIT, and I survived by picking my way through the mess hall offerings. I hope that my next duty station will work out the same way.

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SSG Wilson Watson, U.S. Army (1942-1966)

SSG Wilson Watson, U.S. Army (1942-1966)

Within the ranks of the military, there exists a certain rivalry between those who serve on the front lines and those who serve in the rear with the gear. While all jobs contribute to putting Americans in the fight, the Marines have long prized their beloved infantry above all. In modern terms, it is referred to as the "grunt versus POG debate" with POG referring to "persons other than grunts." In Vietnam, one might have heard the term REMF. Whatever one might call those in the rear, it would...

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Service Reflections of YN2 James Hopton, U.S. Navy (1965-1969)

Service Reflections of YN2 James Hopton, U.S. Navy (1965-1969)

PRESERVING A MILITARY LEGACY FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS The following Reflections represents YN2 James Hopton's legacy of his military service from 1965 to 1969. If you are a Veteran, consider preserving a record of your own military service, including your memories and photographs, on Togetherweserved.com (TWS), the leading archive of living military history. The following Service Reflections is an easy-to-complete self-interview, located on your TWS Military Service Page, which enables you to...

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Service Reflections of CPL Dan Olson,  U.S. Marine Corps (2009-2013)

Service Reflections of CPL Dan Olson, U.S. Marine Corps (2009-2013)

As a child, I always wanted to be a Marine and spent many hours watching movies and playing “war” with friends in the backyard wearing surplus WWII, Korea, and Vietnam apparel and gear given to me by my “uncle” Jr. The late 90s, while I was in high school, was a relative time of peace, and the few people I did see joining the military were doing it for college money, which, while making sense to me, also kind of soured the idea for me. In my senior year in 2000, the Army National Guard ran a recruiting event in the quad area at lunch, and a friend and I added our names to a list to get more information; my mother always told me that the military would brainwash me and that I was flat-footed and wouldn’t be accepted anyway (I’m not flat-footed) and when that Army Sgt called the house I heard my mother quickly give him a piece of her mind and then abruptly hang up on him, and that was the end of that, I wasn’t fully committed to the idea myself and had apprehensions and concerns about whether I’d be up to military life and honestly was unsure that I even had what it takes to make it through boot camp. After high school, I worked for my family, got engaged, and took out a loan for my first home. Then September 11th happened. I was angry, and silly as it may sound, I was filled with guilt as I saw on the news the brave men and women my age who answered the call to service both before and during this unprecedented time in our country. Still, I had obligations here at home and continued on my current course at the time. Years passed, and I grew older and feared that my youth would quickly pass me by. Then, the economic recession of 2008 hit.

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The Dark Side of Glory by Richard McMahon

The Dark Side of Glory by Richard McMahon

In this page-turning suspense novel, Richard McMahon expertly switches between two settings and time periods, the earlier being the Korean War and the current a who-done-it mystery in a world of surprises where nothing is as it seems. The book opens in the present time (the early 1970s) as Biographer Matthew Clark is asked by Miriam Coursen to write a biography of her deceased husband, U.S. Army Major General Philip Coursen, a highly decorated Army officer. When Clark agrees to write the...

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Cpl David Mulldune, U.S. Marine Corps (1967-1969)

Cpl David Mulldune, U.S. Marine Corps (1967-1969)

What personal and professional achievements from your Military service are you most proud of and why?:

Military Training Develops Life Skills. The day before graduation from boot camp at MCRD (Marine Corps Recruit Depot) San Diego, all the platoons gathered on the parade deck to do final drills in front of Major General English, CO of MCRD, and Colonel Boress, CO of the Recruit Training Regiment. We wanted to look sharp and make our DIs proud. Did we ever! Everyone performed flawlessly. Our boots all struck the deck at the same time. It was amazing that so many guys were in complete unison and moving as one. I was feeling so much pride when we did an “eyes right” as we passed General English’s stand and the Marine Corps Hymn started playing. Chills went down my spine, and I felt like my chest was going to pop the buttons off my shirt! I will never forget it.

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Rockets, Sand and Amalgam by Robert Engelmeier

Rockets, Sand and Amalgam by Robert Engelmeier

Webster's Dictionary defines amalgam as "a mixture or blend", making it the perfect word to describe Vietnam veteran Robert Engelmeier's experience in country, as well as his 2023 memoir of it.  The author has written countless academic articles about his chosen career in dentistry and prosthetics as a retired professor who directed the graduate program at the University of Texas Houston Dental Branch for 14 years and served as Prosthodontic Department chair at the University of Pittsburgh and...

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USS Midway Historic Aircraft Carrier & Naval Museum

USS Midway Historic Aircraft Carrier & Naval Museum

The USS Midway aircraft carrier is America’s most popular naval warship museum. Located in downtown San Diego, the museum is open 10am to 5pm 7 days a week, closing only for Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. The museum holds over 700 events a year, from Navy retirements and re-enlistments to changes of command. What is the USS Midway Known For? Commissioned after the culmination of World War II, the USS Midway was one of the longest-serving aircraft carriers of the 20th century. The United...

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Missions of Fire and Mercy: Until Death Do Us Part by William E. Peterson

Missions of Fire and Mercy: Until Death Do Us Part by William E. Peterson

At the age of 19, William E. Peterson embarked upon a life mission which many would gladly have missed. He went to war in Vietnam! In this 302 page book he brings to life his journey from his decision to enlist in the Army, through twelve months of helicopter combat, to his return home. It takes the reader on a wild ride with a helicopter crew chief and door gunner with the First Air Cavalry, C/227th Assault Helicopter Battalion. The typical memoir written by a Vietnam veteran begins with a...

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Vietnam War – Siege of Plei Me

Vietnam War – Siege of Plei Me

J. 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. The Siege of Plei Me Was the Beginning of the First Major Confrontation In October 1965,...

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