I met a beautiful young lady shortly after return-
ing and was married within six months. Four years
passed before Cassidy was born, my one and only
Russel Presgrove ( my cousin ) came over one
day during the first year of my marriage, and
prayed with me at a difficult time. Under convic-
tion, I returned to the Lord and began to go to
church on a regular basis.
For the better part of the next 20 years, I faith-
fully sought the Lord,and spent much time in
study, meditation and prayer. I taught Sunday
School and often went out to witness in outreach
efforts; and more importantly testified for the
Lord in my everyday life, in word and deed.
But something had went terribly wrong in my
marriage. My wife was unhappy and had been for
a number of years. This revelation was a blow
that could have been turned around for good, but
I made a very bad decision that would lead to
disaster. I stopped going to church, rationalizing
that if I could not make her happy committed,
as I was then how could I ever succeed? The
ensuing decisions that we both made marked a
turning point in our lives that ultimately led to a
divorce in 1994.
I became furious with the Lord, and not unlike
Captain Dan in the movie Forest Gump spent the
better part of the next 9 years clinging to that mast
in the storm, fighting God in a spiritual dual ( from
the fallen perspective).
But God is not like man (thank God), he was there
for me ( not fighting me ) all the time. After 9/11
something finally clicked inside me and I tapped
out. Submitted to my God and said, " enough, I
can't run anymore." I have been in the word and
on the net ever sense trying to catch up, wanting
to make up for those lost years of service to the
It is my prayer and greatest hope that the Lord
will never allow me to take my eyes off of him for
the rest of my days. There are several reasons
that I post this very personal and sometimes
(1). No one is beyond falling, beware this is a
warning to all that may think that they could nev-
er stumble to such depths ( A haughty spirit
before the fall ).
Each one of us has an Achilles heel, and the
enemy knows exactly where it is. Do not make
choices that you know are wrong or that do not
line up with God's will for your life. Pride can,
step by step, lead to that horrible place (precipice)
where the pit lingers below. Continued rejection of
doing what we know we should do, or living in sin,
can ultimately lead us to that place of blackest
darkness. If David could murder for the love of a
women, then what Christian alive today is out of
harms way? Like Peter, on the water, if we take
our eyes off the lord we sink. Make no mistake;
God will discipline those that are His own.
(2). Through all the darkest moments of suicide
attempts, a callous disregard for life and for my
Lord, He was always there. Do not let anyone fool
you in to thinking that you have been too bad or
run too far that the Lord would never have you
again. As the Footsteps in the Sand allegory
demonstrates, God's love is greater than anything
we can ever imagine. Warning: Feelings will not
deter God from being at your side. He died for me
and you, and he certainly can bear our sins. Our
God is big enough for the job!
(3). I believe that time is short. Eschatology was
always one of my great loves. There has never
been a time in my life that can parallel these days
that we live. Jesus is coming back and whether it
is today, tomorrow or a decade from now, the
signs declare without question that the labor pains
Do not let our Lord's return catch us as a thief in
the night. He has called his bride to be watchful
and to not be caught unaware.
All the saints of history longed to be alive for this
time that we live, it is a great blessing and
responsibility that is spread out before us.
My prayer and hope is that in some small way this
story may encourage, warn and bless someone's
| The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
Phase two ( Phase two is God, forgiving, restoring, and the beginning of a new journey,
with new eyes and a brand new desire for understanding ) began after my near decade
long spiritual struggle with the Lord. I had hurt my back working at General Motors
in Oklahoma Citythe summer of 2001; June to be exact. I had a foreman job, so the
physical demands were not that difficult, except for the climb to the 58 feet level which
was usually many trips a day. Over a period of time my back continued to worsen to the
point of a collapse, and an ambulance was called on June 15. I had a bulging disk, very
painful, but thankfully not herniated. Rather than have surgery, over the next months I
began working with a physical therapist who I came to believe is anointed by the Lord.
The job ended for me in August and I continued therapy into November. I was released
by the doctor and began to weigh my options. The back was better, I could do all the
normal things without too much problem, but a pipefitter's work is very labor intensive
and the doctors split on whether I should retrain. I moved back home to Duncan
Oklahoma on December 28, 2001.
My rebellion had been total anarchy against God, I will spare the gory details. After 9/11
God began to deal with me again for the umpteenth time. Something was different about
this mix, 9/11 had jolted the world and no less me. I believe it was my final wake up call.
I began to cry out to God, praying and pleading. After being broken to the depths of
spiritual despair, God had put the hook in my jaw. There was no other to turn too, but
the one true God, creator - savior. My problem was beyond modern man's feeble
understanding of the mind and went to the heart and soul, specifically my relationship
with Jesus Christ.
After 9/11 I began to consume everything I could about the current state of affairs
around the world. In a few weeks, I had crammed the equivalent of a basic college course
on world affairs into memory. I was operating in the sphere of understanding that I had
an integration point with before the rebellion, which was my love for the study of
eschatology ( the study of the last things). I digested everything I could on terrorism,
the middle east and Israel. I was functioning on the only level that I could see at the
time. Peering through the prism of a man who had been a spiritual island unto himself,
for the better part of a decade, running and fighting God.
One thing that shocked me was the lack of spirituality in the church. I was on fire and
was aggravated to see much of the church stuck in that revolving door of space and time,
locked into a structured, formal, endless loop of denominational tradition and rigidly
formatted worship. And frankly, given the paradigm shift in the state of world affairs,
I was very surprised at just how few eyes appeared to be looking upward.
Some apparently think that things are getting back to normal. While there may be pauses
and apparitions of normalcy, I do not believe it will ever be the same. We crossed a
bridge from which there is no return. Jesus Christ is coming back and the only question
that remains is when, and how much lies between us and him.
Sometime in October or November I began to write poetry. Now mind you, this is a 52
year old Vietnam combat veteran, and construction worker, who had never really even
considered the possibility of what was about to happen. I began with the poem "Sorrow
and Hope" which was symbolic of the transition I was in. As the days rolled by, I would
lose track of time, studying, trying to catch up in the word and on the web, then the
dreams began and much spiritual struggle. In early December, for what seemed like a
week, God poured out his spirit on me in a way that I had never experienced before. His
love was showering down on me, authenticating to me my restoration to the body, and
more importantly my lord's forgiveness and complete acceptance. Now being a Southern
Baptist practically all my life, I found this unexplainable from my experience, there was
no reference point, but it was wonderful, exhilarating and uplifting.
I began to document the dreams, puzzled and questioning much. I also continued writing
poetry, sharing many of the experiences of my life. I began to seek the lord on whether to
move home, and ultimately made that decision, as covered previously, arriving in
Duncan on December 28, 2001. I had not even considered starting a web page, had no
clue on how to go about such a task, or no thought of it on returning. In less than two
weeks, there were four web pages on line, the original pages were put online with no
thought as to continuity of purpose or plan and were accomplished within a week and
100 hours work. There was the overwhelming conviction that I had to get this work done.
Reminded me of the movie Close Encounters where the people were driven, obsessed with
discovering their purpose, mission, destination, without really having a clue where they
were headed at first. But as I looked back the clues were everywhere, and then came the
As of today (February 8, 2002), I have written seventeen poems that are posted on my
web page. There have been five documented prophetic dreams ( for the most part relating
to God's purposes in and for my life). There are 6 web pages ( over 200 hours work ) and
much more that has been accomplished since my return home. One of the poems took
more than forty hours to write, edit and get posted. It still blows my mind at the work
God is doing, sometimes just sitting back and watching things unfold. I felt that God has
had a hold of the nose ring and I have been jerked in every conceivable direction the past
six weeks. This summary of the beginning of phase two sets up what happened on
Feb-ruary 6, 2002.
This incredible prophetic word given to my sister ( at least a year earlier ) while reading
the devotional book, "My Utmost for his Highest", specifically the February 6 daily
devotion was fulfilled after I read the following excerpt on 02/06/02.
"Are you ready to be offered?
I am already being poured out as a drink offering. 2Ti_4:6 (R.V. marg.).
"I am now ready to be offered." It is a transaction of will, not of sentiment. Tell God you
are ready to be offered; then let the consequences be what they may, there is no strand of
complaint now, no matter what God chooses. God puts you through the crisis in private,
no one person can help another. Externally the life may be the same; the difference is in
will. Go through the crisis in will, then when it comes externally there will be no thought
of the cost. If you do not transact in will with God along this line, you will end in
awakening sympathy for yourself.
"Bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar." The altar means
fire-burning and purification and insulation for one purpose only, the destruction of
every affinity that God has not started and of every attachment that is not an attachment
in God. You do not destroy it, God does; you bind the sacrifice to the horns of the altar;
and see that you do not give way to self-pity when the fire begins. After this way of fire,
there is nothing that oppresses or depresses. When the crisis arises, you realize that things
cannot touch you as they used to do. What is your way of fire?
Tell God you are ready to be offered, and God will prove Himself to be all you ever
dreamed He would be."
Fulfilled exactly like she had written down in her copy of Utmost for the Highest, on the
same page, same verse, exact date. Remembering at that time ( when she wrote it down ),
I was in full rebellion, running, fighting the Lord. When I went over to share with her
what had happened, she stopped me before I hardly had time to start. Excitedly ran over
to the book shelve and showed me what she had written at least a year earlier after
reading this same daily devotion herself, " Terry would give it all over to the lord".
Then I shared with her that similar to what had poured out on me in December came
wave after wave of God's wonderful, cleansing, purifying love. One last point, I moved
back home from an apartment in Oklahoma City on December 28, 2001. Exactly 40 days
to the day is February 6, and, interestingly, forty is the number for testing in the
Many of my friends and even some relatives, no doubt, think I have lost it. It is
interesting that even in the church there is a spirit which can accept much religiosity,
tradition, structure and formalism, but when it comes to the personalization of God
into a living, breathing, caring benefactor who chooses to know us in the most intimate
way, so many balk and turn away.
It must be said that I have confronted my lord with the question, "am I straight jacket
material?" There are not many options here, either he is speaking to me through these
experiences or I am delusional and in need of psychiatric help. There is little room for
gray in between these lines of distinction. Having examined the evidence and testimony
that is available, my conclusion is that God is working in my life and has a purpose for
this web site i.e. healing of the wounded soldiers, wounded Christians, downtrodden,
those heavy laden and is preparing the bride for his coming. Others may come to the
conclusion that I have reached a bridge to far, I can only ask that you earnestly seek at
the Master's feet (2Cor. 5:11-15 ).
2Co 5:11 We know what it means to respect the Lord, and we encourage everyone to
turn to him. God himself knows what we are like, and I hope you also know what kind
of people we are.
2Co 5:12 We are not trying once more to brag about ourselves. But we want you to be
proud of us, when you are with those who are not sincere and brag about what others
think of them.
2Co 5:13 If we seem out of our minds, it is between God and us. But if we are in our
right minds, it is for your good.
2Co 5:14 We are ruled by Christ's love for us. We are certain that if one person died
for everyone else, then all of us have died.
2Co 5:15 And Christ did die for all of us. He died so we would no longer live for
ourselves, but for the one who died and was raised to life for us.
Regardless of what others decide, I have made the personal decision to follow Jesus,
wherever he leads. What does this mean, this statement that is heard so often from
It does not mean that we who are driven with urgency, or others who feel the persistent
tugging have all the answers to all the particulars on the Second Coming or complete
knowledge on any theological doctrine or question. What it does mean is that we have
the big picture, we know our final destiny, our purposes and we have our marching
1. We know that Jesus is coming for his bride ( the church at large, not the buildings or
denominational chest beatings).
1Th 4:13 But we would not have you ignorant, brethren, concerning those who are
asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope.
1Th 4:14 For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus,
God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.
1Th 4:15 For this we declare to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive,
who are left until the coming of the Lord, shall not precede those who have fallen asleep.
1Th 4:16 For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command,
with the archangel's call, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in
Christ will rise first;
1Th 4:17 then we who are alive, who are left, shall be caught up together with them in
the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and so we shall always be with the Lord.
2. We know that there will be a great celebration banquet called the Marriage Supper of
Rev 19:9 And the angel said to me, "Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the
marriage supper of the Lamb." And he said to me, "These are true words of God."
3. We know our purpose in this life and the one to come is to glorify Him who formed
and saved us and the way we accomplish that is becoming more Christ like.
2Co 3:18 But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord,
are transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord the
Eph 4:11 Christ chose some of us to be apostles, prophets, missionaries, pastors, and
Eph 4:12 so that his people would learn to serve and his body would grow strong.
Eph 4:13 This will continue until we are united by our faith and by our understanding
of the Son of God. Then we will be mature, just as Christ is, and we will be completely
Eph 4:14 We must stop acting like children. We must not let deceitful people trick us by
their false teachings, which are like winds that toss us around from place to place.
Eph 4:15 Love should always make us tell the truth. Then we will grow in every way and
be more like Christ, the head
Eph 4:16 of the body. Christ holds it together and makes all of its parts work perfectly,
as it grows and becomes strong because of love.
4. We know our final destiny, as a Christian, is when we see him face to face.
1Co 13:12 For now we see in a mirror, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part;
but then shall I know fully even as also I was fully known.
5. We know there will be a thousand year reign of Christ to fulfill the promises to the
seed of Abraham. This is specifically related to the Jew and God's sovereign will
( Rom 11: 25-31 ).
Rev 20:2 And he seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the Devil and Satan,
and bound him for a thousand years,
Rev 20:3 and threw him into the pit, and shut it and sealed it over him, that he should
deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years were ended. After that he must be
loosed for a little while.
6. We know that at the conclusion of the millennial Satan will be loosed and his ultimate
demise is a foregone conclusion.
Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are ended, Satan will be loosed from his prison
Rev 20:8 and will come out to deceive the nations which are at the four corners of the
earth, that is, Gog and Magog, to gather them for battle; their number is like the sand
of the sea.
Rev 20:9 And they marched up over the broad earth and surrounded the camp of the
saints and the beloved city; but fire came down from heaven and consumed them,
Rev 20:10 and the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and
sulphur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and
night for ever and ever.
7. We know the final reality. Then comes the final judgements of the dead, that every
knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is lord.
Phi 2:11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the
Rom 14:11 For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, to me every knee shall bow, And
every tongue shall confess to God.
Rev 20:11 Then I saw a great white throne and him who sat upon it; from his presence
earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them.
Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books
were opened. Also another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead
were judged by what was written in the books, by what they had done.
Rev 20:13 And the sea gave up the dead in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead in
them, and all were judged by what they had done.
Rev 20:14 Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second
death, the lake of fire;
Rev 20:15 and if any one's name was not found written in the book of life, he was
thrown into the lake of fire.
8. We know that there will be a new heaven and a new earth, all things will be made new.
Isa 65:17 For see, I am making a new heaven and a new earth: and the past things will be
gone completely out of mind.
Isa 66:22 For as the new heaven and the new earth which I will make will be for ever
before me, says the Lord, so will your seed and your name be for ever.
2Pe 3:13 But having faith in his word, we are looking for a new heaven and a new earth,
which will be the resting-place of righteousness.
Rev 21:1 Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first
earth had passed away, and the sea was no more.
In conclusion, I would encourage you that today is the first day of the rest of your life.
If you don't know Christ and have that assurance of your salvation, there is no better
time than right Now to accept his extended offer of eternal life. Please click here for
Plan of Salvation.
As of today ( October 18, 2003 ) there are over 140 poems that can be found on the three
poetry pages. God continues to work a miracle in my life and enriches each day with His
precious and glorious presence!
May God Richly bless and keep you!
(A 1/9 - February 22,1969)
Medal of Honor
Captain Wesley L. Fox
Lieutenant Lee Herron *
2nd Lieutenant William J. Christman III *
2nd Lieutenant George W. Malone
LCPL John R. Baird *
SGT David Beyerlein
LCPL David A.Chacon *
LCPL Darrell H. Chapman
SSGT Robert R. Jensen
LCPL William C. Northington *
* Posthumous awarded
|The Morning After
Applause breaks out at the dawning start from deep
within the many beating hearts; some are anxiously-
contorting to see the yellow orb, twinkling, through
the dense triple canopy. Yesterday's chilling screams,
and the smell of burnt flesh, sizzling, has subsided.
Men rousing, C-rat browsing, blood soaked gauze,
with no mention of any cause; above essence of self,
what glares from the Wall: are those eleven ponchos
that lie in plain view; bathing with the morning dew;
silently whispering a language that only they knew.
Arouse, pausing for them to awaken; surely they are
just sleeping, eerily surreal waiting for the prank and
leaping, but they remain quietly still, lined up properly
in formation - even keel. The covering remains inert,
a snapshot that lingers, the shutter frozen, with the
trickling fingers succumbing to gravity's entice; the
tiny puddles racing, merging and colliding, vanishing
into the thirsty soil, filtering through the dry, crimson
stain, alongside future descendants: forever in vain.
Fighting back cares, as the Huey vibrates above the
trees, creating a hurricane size breeze; time to say
good bye and promises to seize: "When I glimpse
the angelic silhouettes cutting my, frazzled, rotten fa-
tigues, feel the soft, clean, snow white linen, and the
virgin smell of those divine, pearly sheets, that wrap
my filthy torso: I'll doff to your valor with a tear my
brother, then the magical thief will cradle me home,
where childhood joy still clings to innocent dreams."
Over seventy wounded, that boarded the choppers,
saluting those brave young men cut down. Though
they be forgotten by the many, even before they lay
beneath the shroud; gnawing echo's of "Di bo chet,"
stir deep within the bowels, rallying the spirits of the
warriors, who lived and fought with them that bout.
Our souls in unison burst out with a shout : "That the
very atoms will split, if we should fail, exploding right-
eous truth about those loyal, trusted pals, judging us
that day, when every comrade's knee shall bow."
Laughing grandchildren commemorating your cour-
age, redirect focus back to the names on the black
rock's face. 'The Walking Dead' belated reunion of
hand shakes and hugs, one of the highest forms of
human communion, declares to all around: "that your
lives are forever etched into our conscious crown,
as much a part of us, as the blood that fills our veins;
flowing as a mighty river until the last drop is drain-
ed. You shall never be forgotten as long as there is
breath contained. We honor and pay tribute to your
ultimate sacrifice arranged, and glory in the celebra-
tions of life that you claimed for us in the exchange."
|If this work touches you in some small way, or there are some
helpful suggestions please email me your thoughts.
| Forward - The Morning After
The setting is the Vietnam war memorial and a Walking Dead reunion is in progress. The teller of the tale is
looking through the Wall, back more than three decades to February 23, 1969.
My sincere desire is that these meager words spoken, somehow give honor and pay tribute to those eleven
fallen marines that died on February 22, 1969. And a special tribute to The Walking Dead ( Di bo chet ), the
famed 1st Bn. 9th Marine Regiment.
Hopefully, it will be a reminder to all of us who survived that day and served with them, to carry the banner
of the fallen high, never allowing their memory to diminish while we live.
Thirdly, it speaks to all Americans about sending their sons and daughters to war and the importance of the
many (our nation) supporting this country's fighting men and women through thick or thin and not forgetting
the sacrifice they have made.
And lastly and perhaps most important it is a strong reminder that the ultimate price our friends paid
demands from us who survived our utmost attention to live each day, each moment to the fullest, squeezing
every ounce of life that is humanly possible out of each breath that remains for us.
In his name,
First posting : 08/01/02
Edited : 10/19/06
|This poem is dedicated to the families of the men who lost their lives in Vietnam. Special
thanks and tribute to the Lee Herron family, David Nelson and the Edward Powers family.
Original Post 12/07/02
Loved by the family far beyond memory,
So young a man to meet manifest destiny,
Handsomely attired, proud in those dress blues,
Joining a unique band of brothers in cahoots.
The soul journey leads to the Ashau Valley;
Worried sick: Mom & Dad watch each evening tally,
Just for the offhand chance of a frozen glance.
There's no cell phoning home, but he was never alone,
Through faith and duty he walked far beyond the call.
How could any mortal man ever-stand quite so tall?
His courage cannot be revealed in poetic pretense,
The angelic bugler trumped precedence,
A thick fog of war enshrouds the yearned for evidence,
And though more than four decades have elapsed,
We're still cherishing his past
With an ageless final snapshot memorialized by theft.
Reflections remain for those who are left:
His youthful laughter may flee,
But that smile shall never cease,
As long as the good Lord allows our heart to beat.
|A Warrior's Prayer
In the eye of the storm they gathered with sword,
Quietly seated, heads bowed in reverent accord,
Ironic peaceful calm, surrounded by the reality of war,
An "into thy hands," brings the soul a reward,
A few words of encouragement blessed by the Lord,
Combat armed and trained to bring the foe utmost sorrow,
Acknowledging who has the final say on tomorrow.
Make our aim straight to shorten this struggle,
May we always keep the faith through every tussle,
Give us strength and courage when our hearts sink to fail,
Lift us up as a sail, catching the wind of your divine will,
Guarantee our faithfulness, anointing with the promised seal,
Hope of eternal victory lifts our spirits with the desired zeal.
Neither can the pendulum swings of height or depth,
Profound philosophical questions of life and death,
Nations with enmity determining borders or tracts,
Rob us in this realm or the next of this certainty of fact,
That If the Almighty be for us, who can stand against this act?
|Operation Dewey Canyon
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
( Phase I )
I was brought up in a very good Christian home.
My mother and father loved the lord and taught
their four children well. We went to church every
Sunday, always in Sunday School and Sunday
night services. I was born in the Bible Belt and
the teachings of Scripture were common know-
ledge and a fabric of the society I grew up in.
In my youth, I gave my life to the lord and accept-
ed his provision of mercy i.e. salvation by grace
through faith. I recall many times asking the lord to
come into my life and save me during those early
years. So it is difficult to say exactly when I be-
came a born again believer. What is important is
that I know Christ did save me and that I became
a Christian in my youth.
I grew up pretty much an average kid, shy, and
not very aggressive. I played high school football
and ran track. Nothing particularly outstanding
except I did make student of the month my senior
year after a series of good Friday night's on the
football field, ending up an all district running back.
After high school I enrolled in college, but my
heart was not in it. The war in Vietnam was rag-
ing and having watched far to many John Wayne
movies decided to join the Marines. In December
1967, I went off to San Diego California and began
Marine Corp boot camp. This was a major culture
shock to an 18 year old naive youngster. But it was
nothing compared to the lessons that were to be
learned in my trip to Vietnam in 1968-69.
Sadly, my experiences in Vietnam are not those
of an obedient Christian. I was not a good witness
for the Lord during my stay in D' Nam. But I knew
the Lord's hand was upon me, due largely to
praying parents and relatives. There was the time
when I was transferred from one company to
another; and the squad I was supposed to go on
patrol with was practically wiped out the same day
I left. I was a forward observer and there was an
extreme shortage of my M.O.S. ( military occu-
pational status - 0846), so they would on occasion
move me around to different companies.
On February 22, 1969 my Company Alpha 1/9,
3rd Marine Division was assigned to move down
a ridge in the Ashau Valley and acquire water from
a creek. Three companies had been under sporadic
fire on the ridge for sometime and had run low on
water. We were sent to gather the life saving liq-
uid for the better part of the battalion. My estimate
of how many actually went down that day from Al-
pha Co., is some- where in the 90's ( I have been
reminded recently that there were a number of
H&S and Charlie Company personnel that joined
us in our mission).
Alpha had suffered a measure of casualties over
the previous weeks and our mortar men had re-
mained on the ridge for support. So a number of
unlucky marines joined us from those two compan-
ies on our trip down to the stream. When the day
had ended only a fragment of Alpha Company
walked up the hill unscathed. I would say that it
was no more than 500 meters or roughly 1/4 mile
down to the creek. It ultimately would seem like
light years, or in another galaxy far, far away.
I had just finished filling my canteens with water
when I heard the first shots. I climbed the bank of
the creek as fast as possible and hurriedly moved
over to a group of Marines. A Marine had been
killed and a couple of NVA. I took one of the dead
NVA's belt off (enemy souvenirs were highly
prized) and tied his bush hat to my gear. I was
gathering up what I could and sorting items in his
pack, kneeling down in a fox hole when the real
fire fight began. It was around 6:00 AM when the
battle started and would last nearly 12 hours.
Those 12 hours are compressed in my mind and all
that actually happened is beyond my conscious
ability to express ( See - The Vietnam Quatrain ).
Suffice it to say that I along with 72* others were
wounded and 11 were killed in my company. More
than a 100 enemy were killed. We had stumbled
into a U- shaped bunker complex ambush. They
had 50 caliber machine guns, snipers in the trees,
mortars and more machine guns on a ridge across
the creek opposite our battalion headquarters
The ambush cut us to pieces and if it had not been
for Delta company coming from another ridge, we
all could have been over run and killed. At times
the fighting was hand to hand. My marine comrades
fought valiantly for their lives that day, and many
medals were given out to honor the fallen. My CO
( Wesley L. Fox ) received the Medal of Honor and
our XO (Lee Herron) the posthumous Navy Cross
for valor on that fateful day that I will never forget.
My wounds ( multiple shrapnel wounds to the chest,
knee, and heel) were not all that serious, but I was
medivaced along with many others to a hospital at
Phubai. I later was transferred to a hospital in
Danang. When my wounds had healed: about a
month later, I returned to my unit and completed
the last few days of operation Dewey Canyon with
Alpha 1/9. The company had very few left that I
knew, the Skipper (Captain Fox ), Doc Hudson and
my radio operator (Albertina) were all that remain-
ed (that I recall) of those I had fought along side of
that unforgettable day.
In July, while serving near Khe Sahn we got the
word that Nixon was pulling us out of Vietnam.
Less than a week later, traveling on a C-130, I
along with a hand full of others, landed in Okina-
wa as an advanced element - to prepare for the
battalion's arrival, which would come a little later
by ship transport.
Returning home was another shock, all the
marching and protesting was almost more than this
19 year old, battle-hardened, marine could bear.
The war changed us forever, and there is little
doubt that the after effects of being sent to fight for
this country, in an unpopular war, would detri-
mentally impact our psyches for decades to come.
*There is some question concerning the actual number of
wounded: resources that I've looked at generally give a
number between 54 and 72. My recollection has always
been that the number was72,
|The Stone's Face
Back in the world, watching a round-eyed girl,
Dreaming of flinging her across the floor in a whirl,
And thrilled to be kissing the precious red earth,
But the Warriors return as the media's dessert.
Family and friends notice jumpiness at first,
And they attribute it to us being hurt,
But for those who were burnt,
It is the nature of the lessons we learnt.
The sudden life changing transactions
Bring about strange rapid reactions:
Alien detachment to common everyday actions,
Making it impossible to have normal interactions.
Time reaps: noise no longer bullies us to leap;
The amazing wonders of a good night's sleep;
Moonlight frolicking, skinny-dipp'n in the deep;
And a wild ride that landed us in a heap.
Weird emotional responses to those who care,
Intellectual interrogation only prompts despair
After reflecting on friends who departed there;
Remembrances etched, relived in a solemn stare.
Some find their answer in the destructive dare,
Thinking Humpty Dumpty could never be repaired.
Others imagine they have already been squared,
Appearing fine, but inwardly they remain impaired.
The remnant are ground to a rounded smooth grade.
Life is short and the memories - they will fade,
But all the blood brothers met at the Stone's Face,
And are forever engraved in that watershed place.
|This poem is dedicated to all those who served in Vietnam. Those memorialized at the Wall, survivors
who had their lives shattered by the war and never recovered. Some who have healed outwardly, but
find that the inward wounds remain and finally the remainder who have had their square corners
rounded, catapulted to heights they would never have achieved had it not been for enduring that
watershed place. We stand together as one, all blood brothers, those who have met at the Stone's Face.
Revised : 10/05/11
|~ Fear Not! ~
Jehovah sits on the most high throne,
Our shelter in every storm that has blown,
Hearing all petitions and the slightest groan,
And there is never a time that He leaves us alone.
If God be for us, who can stand against the known?
What enemy would dare cast a stone
Against the Almighty's precious own,
Only fools would come against His atoned.
Though predators attack their prey all around,
There is nothing for us to fear from the sound.
We shall trample on the bones of beasts that surround
When His holy angels grind them into the ground.
Though divisions fall to our front and to the flanks,
Thousands upon thousands in our very own ranks,
And the enemy is dug in with armor and heavy tanks,
Yet not a penny is stolen from our allotted time banks.
So give it to the one that is in charge of the hour,
He triumphs with omnipotent awesome power,
Easily toppling the foe's stronghold towers,
The enemy runs away in fear and cowers.
The Lord laughs at the traps of His foe,
With incredible power he pulls back His sovereign bow,
The missile flies straight to the invader's soul,
And evil purposes are demolished by the fatal blow.
The Ancient of Days carries a mighty powerful sword,
And He is the one that has established this accord;
When trouble advances, simply call upon the Lord,
And you will live a long life and receive your reward.
Jehovah God knows those that love Him,
And in times of peril He will rescue them.
His salvation promises not to condemn;
This comes from the word of the great I Am.
|Psalm 91 has always been a stalwart chapter of
inspiration to lean on for men at war. Here is my
meager attempt at putting its principles to rhyme.
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