Showing posts with label Ia Drang Valley. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ia Drang Valley. Show all posts

Monday, March 7, 2016

Ia Drang Valley Veterans Memories Deeply Etched

Ia Drang veterans recall bloody battle 
Victoria Advocate 
By Jon Wilcox March 6, 2016 

PORT LAVACA - Despite graying beards and wrinkled faces, the veterans honored their flag with rigid salutes and straight backs.
March 6, 2016 Photo By: Leslie Boorhem-Stephenson From left to right, Joe Pena, Jo Rivera, Elias Cuevas, Robert Saucedo, Arturo Villareal, Anastacio Lara, Nathan Harvey and Martin Latigue pose for a photo at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 4403 in Port Lavaca. They all fought in the Vietnam War, specifically the battle of Ia Drang.
From across the state and beyond, veterans from the Vietnam War and other conflicts gathered Saturday at Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4403 outside Port Lavaca. They traveled from their homes to remember the Battle of Ia Drang and those they had lost in that faraway Vietnamese valley in November 1965.

The men, forever linked by their shared experiences from the battle, visited with each other throughout the day. They shared lunch, pleasant conversation and deeply etched memories of the fateful days they had endured in the Ia Drang Valley.

"It's important so that they are not forgotten," said Jacque Rudd, honorary member at the post. "It keeps them alive."
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Sunday, November 29, 2015

Vietnam Veteran Remembers Battle of the Ia Drang

Not sure about this report. How could a soldier go through basic training in 1963 and not know anything about Vietnam for a year?
1965 Major battle erupts in the Ia Drang Valley
1st Cavalry unit ambushed in the Ia Drang Valley

Something about this story seems off,,,,
Vietnam Voices: Bob Beebe: 'Oh Lord, what have I gotten myself into?'
Billings Gazette
Larry Mayer
Updated Nov 27, 2015

Bob Beebe served in the United States Army from 1963 to 1968. He graduated from Bozeman High School. He served in the Battle of the Ia Drang, one of the bloodiest and most severe, which was highlighted in the book and movie "We Were Soldiers Once and Young." This is part of his Vietnam story.

Gazette: In 1963, did you know anything about Vietnam?

Beebe: "Not until March 1964 — that's when I first I heard about Vietnam because it started hitting the news."

Beebe did basic training in Fort Ord, Calif., and then did artillery school in Fort Sill, Okla., for advanced individual training. In January 1964, he went to "jump school" in Fort Benning, Ga.

Beebe: "The U.S. government at that time was getting interested in the Vietnam War, and we started experimenting with helicopters, so we formed the 11th Air Assault Division ... We spent three months in North and South Carolina in maneuvers and experimenting with helicopters."

Beebe: "The U.S. government at that time was getting interested in the Vietnam War, and we started experimenting with helicopters, so we formed the 11th Air Assault Division ... We spent three months in North and South Carolina in maneuvers and experimenting with helicopters."
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Sunday, January 6, 2013

Battle of Ia Drang Chaplain Nevin Snyder Remembered

From Bill Vagianos, President, Brevard Veteran's Memorial Center

In a place that came to be known as The Valley of Death, in a football field-sized clearing called landing zone X-Ray, Lt. Colonel Hal Moore and 400 young troopers from the elite newly formed American 7th "Air" Cavalry, were surrounded by 2,000 North Vietnamese soldiers dug into the surrounding tunnel-pocked mountainside.

The ensuing battle was one of the most savage of the Vietnam War. Those men under fire, their common acts of uncommon valor, and their loyalty to and love for one another continually reflect our Honor and Commitment in service to our country.

The battle was depicted in the book and movie, "We Were Soldiers Once, and Young" Nevin Snyder was there and served heroically.

Nevin served for many, many years as Chaplain to the Vietnam Veterans of Brevard, the Brevard Veteran's Council, the Brevard Veteran's Memorial Center, and also ministered to the Veteran population at-large on an ongoing basis.

Nevin Snyder fought his final battle January 2, 2013. He will buried, alongside his wife at the Brevard cemetery with full Military Honors on Friday, January 18, 2013 at 1500 hours.

JANUARY 5, 2013

My brother Nevin

My brother Nevin died Wednesday afternoon, Jan. 2, at Fellowship Manor in Whitehall, Pa. He was 84.

Nevin served as a pastor in Pennsylvania, where he grew up, before becoming a full-time army chaplain.

As a chaplain, his tours of duty included Vietnam and Thailand.

He was chaplain to the soldiers who fought in the Battle of Ia Drang where 72 American soldiers died, the first big loss of American lives in the Vietnam War. This battle was the basis for the movie We Were Soldiers, although the movie distorted the facts of the battle to try to make the story more upbeat.

It was not an upbeat story except for the honor of the soldiers who served and died. Retired General Hal Moore tells the real story in his book We Were Soldiers Once ... And Young on which the movie was loosely based.

The night before the battle, Nevin served communion to some of the 72 men who died the next day. After the battle, he was called upon to identify their bodies.

He told me that he smoked a cigar while identifying the bodies because the cigar smoke masked the smell of death. Otherwise, he said, he would have vomited. Better to look manly smoking a cigar than to break down.
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Thursday, August 21, 2008

Vietnam Vet Edward Freeman, Medal of Honor, died at the age of 80

Medal of Honor helicopter pilot dies

By Jessie L. Bonner - The Associated Press
Posted : Thursday Aug 21, 2008 6:09:22 EDT

BOISE, Idaho — Edward Freeman, a former Army helicopter pilot awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroics during the Vietnam War and portrayed in the Mel Gibson movie “We Were Soldiers,” has died. He was 80.

Doug Freeman said his father died Wednesday in Boise from health complications due to Parkinson’s Disease after spending several weeks undergoing treatment.

The Mississippi native braved intense enemy fire in the Ia Drang Valley as he carried out rescue missions on Nov. 14, 1965, during what was considered one of the fiercest battles of the Vietnam War.

After an Army battalion was surrounded by enemy forces, Freeman flew his unarmed helicopter through enemy fire to evacuate 30 seriously wounded soldiers and bring them to safety. He also delivered water, ammunition and supplies.

Actor Mark McCracken portrayed Freeman in the 2002 film.
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The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress,
March 3, 1863, has awarded in the name of The Congress the Medal of Honor to


for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty:

Captain Ed W. Freeman, United States Army, distinguished himself by numerous acts of conspicuous gallantry and extraordinary intrepidity on 14 November 1965 while serving with Company A, 229th Assault Helicopter Battalion, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile). As a flight leader and second in command of a 16-helicopter lift unit, he supported a heavily engaged American infantry battalion at Landing Zone X-Ray in the Ia Drang Valley, Republic of Vietnam. The unit was almost out of ammunition after taking some of the heaviest casualties of the war, fighting off a relentless attack from a highly motivated, heavily armed enemy force. When the infantry commander closed the helicopter landing zone due to intense direct enemy fire, Captain Freeman risked his own life by flying his unarmed helicopter through a gauntlet of enemy fire time after time, delivering critically needed ammunition, water and medical supplies to the besieged battalion. His flights had a direct impact on the battle's outcome by providing the engaged units with timely supplies of ammunition critical to their survival, without which they would almost surely have gone down, with much greater loss of life. After medical evacuation helicopters refused to fly into the area due to intense enemy fire, Captain Freeman flew 14 separate rescue missions, providing life-saving evacuation of an estimated 30 seriously wounded soldiers -- some of whom would not have survived had he not acted. All flights were made into a small emergency landing zone within 100 to 200 meters of the defensive perimeter where heavily committed units were perilously holding off the attacking elements. Captain Freeman's selfless acts of great valor, extraordinary perseverance and intrepidity were far above and beyond the call of duty or mission and set a superb example of leadership and courage for all of his peers. Captain Freeman's extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the United States Army.