1. Welcome to Vietnam!
When I was a just a kid I used to go into the hills around my home in California and with my friends and brothers, we'd play war.
We would imagine ourselves as the famous American heroes of the major wars. We mostly were the Korean war heroes that we heard of in the news all the time. All of us, still to young to understand what war really is, would think of us as the next American war heroes. Shooting our Tommy guns from the hip, running through machine gun fire with all the bullets missing us like we were Jesus christ himself. It was this fascination with war that we all grew up with that secured our place in the World. We would be soldiers, we would be sailors and airmen and Marines. We would be Rangers. We would be men of action, who stood up for America and fought of her enemies.
My name is Daniel Redman, I was 18 when I joined the 75th ranger Infantary regiment. , I'm 19 now. We are the best of the best. The proudest and most elite force the army has to offer. I have been trained, I have been taught to kill and survive but no training could have prepared us for this. No training could have prepared us for 'Nam.
When I was 12, my family went for a holiday in Alaska. We saw everything the state had to offer and I remember one moment inparticular. We were by a river, I don't know it's name but I remember the cold. Christ, I don't remember ever being so cold but after about a minute of freezing our assess off we saw this massive grizzly come to the side of the water. They don't got good eyesight so they didn't see us and carried on hunting for fish. For about five minutes we just watched it. She seemed so calm, so majestic, so beautiful. She added to this pcture of absolute brilliance to the Alaskan landscape. For ever that image will be in my mind, the memory of watching the bear and the hills. It was something that, if he really was their, God could be proud of.
Vietnam however wasn't.
It was a heap of dense, shit covered jungle with no intresting animals. No Lions, no Giraffes, no Grizzlies. Just stupid fucking insects designed to give you an agonizing and slow death. Not to mention the godamn slanty eyed fuckers laying traps which will blow your legs off or waiting in piles of shit to come out and fill your ass full of AK rounds.
I count down the days till I can go home. Go back to California. See my family. Eat a meal which isn't rice. Walk around without being shot at. But until then, I'm fucked.
Don't get me wrong I love being a ranger, I just hate 'Nam.