article submitted by Pete McGlade, Key Largo, Florida
A veteran - whether active duty, retired, national guard or reserve– is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to 'The United States of America', for an amount of 'up to and including his life.' That is Honor, and there are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it.
-- Author Unknown
We Were Soldiers Once
You're an 18 or 19 year old kid. You're critically wounded, and dying in the jungle in the Ia Drang
Valley, 11-14-1965. LZ Xray, Vietnam. Your Infantry Unit is outnumbered 8 - 1, and the enemy fire is so intense, from 100 or 200 yards away, that your own Infantry Commander has ordered the MediVac helicopters to stop coming in.
You're lying there, listening to the enemy machine guns, and you know you're not getting out. Your family is half-way around the world, 12,000 miles away, and you'll never see them again. As the world starts to fade in and out, you know this is the day.
Then, over the machine gun noise, you faintly hear that sound of a helicopter, and you look up to see a Huey, but it doesn't seem real, because no Medi-Vac markings are on it.
Ed Freeman is coming for you. He's not Medi-Vac, so it's not his job, but he's flying his Huey down into the machine gun fire, after the Medi-Vacs were ordered not to come.
He's coming anyway. And he drops it in, and sits there in the machine gun fire, as they load 2 or 3 of you on board.
Then he flies you up and out through the gunfire, to the Doctors and Nurses. And, he kept coming back...... 13 more times..... and took about 30 of you and your buddies out, who would never have gotten out.
Medal of Honor Recipient Ed Freeman died last Wednesday at the age of 80, in Boise, ID......
May God rest his soul...