Kendrick Dye and Samuel Walley interviewed Craig German on his military service and experience in Vietnam. German was born on June 1st, 1944, and both his father and his grandfather had military experience. He graduated from Purdue University in Indiana in 1966 and was able to use Student Deferment during the draft for Vietnam to go to graduate school at South Dakota State University until 1968. He was then sent to Fort Dix for basic and advanced infantry training, then sent to OCS and Fort Bragg in 1969. German went to Vietnam in May of 1970, and shortly celebrated his 26th birthday. He shared stories that ranged from humorous to tragic. German returned to the United States to Hawaii in February of 1971, and finally returned to Indiana in May of 1971. He then shares his views looking back on the war decades after his return.
Dee Gillespie interviewed Jeff Gore on his military service and experience in Vietnam. Gore was born in Cedartown, Georgia, in 1947, and grew up in Atlanta. Both of his parents served during World War II, his father as a Tank Company Commander during the Battle of the Bulge and his mother as a code-breaker intercepting messages from even Emperor Hirohito. Other members of his family also served in the military. He graduated from high school in 1965. Gore “auditioned” for the army after his first year in college at Dekalb College. He was sent to the Navy School of Music at Fort McPherson in Virginia. He was then sent to OCS and declined going to Westpoint because of the high death rate of lieutenants in Vietnam. Gore originally had orders to go to Heidelberg, Germany, but was instead sent to Vietnam in late 1968. He was part of a performing Headquarters Band in the United States and in Vietnam joined the 4th Infantry Division Band there, performing for both the military and Vietnamese villages. He did not face serious conflict and shared lots of humorous stories. He spent one year in Vietnam and returned to the United States in 1969. His opinion of the war after his service didn’t change despite fighting in it; he felt that the United States “had no business there because it was a civil war that we couldn’t win.” Gore did resent the public negativity against Vietnam soldiers after they returned.
David Wise interviewed Thomas Hritz on his military service and experience in Vietnam. Hritz was born in Minnesota and lived there until 2008 when he moved to Georgia. His father fought in World War II and Korea. After graduating from high school in 1970, he joined the Air Force and was trained in radio operation and Morse code transmissions at Keesler Air Force Base in Mississippi. He was then stationed at a naval base in Italy for 15 months, and was finally sent to Vietnam in October of 1972. As part of the 6924th Security Squadron, he was then sent to Thailand since the war in Vietnam was winding down by the time he got there. He was directed by the CIA and the National Security Agency during his service in Thailand, and his mission was to, both in air and on the ground, intercept messages of the transport of materials from North Vietnamese fighters to South Vietnam, as well as messages from communist forces in Laos. He shares stories of friendly locals in Thailand, the barracks he stayed in, and the climate of the Southeast Asia region. He married a woman from Thailand, shared stories about his marriage to her, and after 509 days of service, returned to the United States with her in April of 1974. Over time, he has increasingly felt that the United States government left people in Laos and Thailand “high and dry” for retreating without winning. Hritz also shares stories about refugees from those countries who later came to the United States, how he met them and became friends with them.
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