3:34 | The Vietnam War was a complicated time for a lifetime military guy like Ross McKimmey. With so many conflicting interests at hand, it was hard for them to develop a clear strategy to defeat the Vietnamese. Mr. McKimmey also discusses the accuracy of the Domino Theory.
Keywords : congress veterans president LBJ Washington D.C. difficult conflicting interests shot down direction Vietnamese government Domino Theory
After joining the Army at an early age, Ross McKimmey decided to go to flight school in Fort Hood, Texas. After that, he was sent to Vietnam to take photographs of the airfields in Vietnam.
Ross McKimmey recounts his time above Vietnam.
While assigned to take photographs over Vietnam, Ross McKimmey had the chance to fly a multitude of different aircraft that helped them achieve the mission at hand. He describes various situations he found himself in while on reconnaissance missions, including discovering a huge number of NVA trucks, almost being shot down, and being approached by an enemy jet.
Passing time in Vietnam was crucial to staying sane while on the base or in the big cities. Coming back from war, Ross McKimmey didn't feel the scorn from the anti-war protests that some of his fellow soldiers did. Mr. McKimmey also discusses the differences between his three tours in Vietnam.
After his tours in Vietnam, Ross McKimmey accepted a position as the Assistant Chief of Staff Communications & Electronics in Berlin, Germany. Living near the entrance to East Berlin, he and his company spent a lot of time there.
After his time in Staff Communications & Electronics, Ross McKimmey moved into work for NATO as the Southern Region Signal Support Regiment in Naples, Italy.
While heading home from Vietnam, the U.S.S. Manley made its way across the Indian Ocean and up through North Africa. While at port, they had a close encounter maneuvering the ship out into the correct direction but ended up having a smooth trip back to Charleston.
He made Buck Sergeant about the time he figured out that he and his buddies were basically fighting for each other and for no other reason. They were taking a large bunker complex and when two others were under fire, he went out to get them. After the fight was over, he was disturbed to learn what his superiors intended to do about the enemy base.
As Marine Captain Ron Christmas fought to regain the city of Hue, he found the enemy adept at concealment and surprise. Every soldier in a spider hole was armed with a rifle and a RPG launcher. He also encountered a nun with an AK-47. His action during this time earned him the Navy Cross.
In a letter home, Tommy Clack expressed his worry that something bad was going to happen and it did when his unit engaged the NVA near the Cambodian border. He saw the enemy soldier stand and fire the RPG that changed his life forever.
The RPG that severed Joe McDonald’s foot didn’t kill him. The machine gun fire that hit him as he still tried to help others didn’t kill him. The grenade taped to his hand might have killed him if the VC had found his hiding place.
As an operations officer, Grayson Roulston and his company were providing support for the Vietnamese army and had to think tactically with their rounds as they defended the perimeter. One time, while flying through enemy territory, Roulston was hit and feared he might be taken down. Luckily, his aircraft stabilized.
Now stateside, Kramer navigates the restrictions his injury has placed on his military career. Thanks to his administrative skills, he lands a government job and works his way up through the ranks, but becomes frustrated with the apathy of the reservists he oversees. He offers sober advice to future war vets.
After leaving Vietnam, Grayson Roulston stayed in the military on multiple different tours of duty before retiring in Germany. He stayed on staff with the military working at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas to be closer to home.
Moving to a small village called Rach Kien, Grayson Roulston and his company sought to suppress enemy forces. While there, they found out how good at hiding the VC really were and the challenges they would have to face in trying to eliminate them.
While stationed in Vietnam, Grayson Roulston and his company worked on the mobile riverine force to try to secure the area from VC. After his injury, he took some time off the front lines to do some administrative work before being sent back to the field.
Before getting settled in his company, Stan Marcieski was hastily brought on a mission over the jungle to try to help out a company that had been ambushed by NVA forces. After they had some issues with the plane, they had to think quickly to be able to save some casualties.
While patrolling, Grayson Roulston hit a booby trap that knocked him unconscious and in very rough shape. Fortunately, he was able to be evacuated to Dong Tam where he was able to be treated, but even that hospital was not totally safe from danger.
Grayson Roulston remembers February 26th, 1968, when Bravo Company was in one of the worst firefights they’d ever seen at a hot landing zone. After facing very heavy casualties, they managed to medevac most of the company to safety and regain order.