INTO THE NAM
Into the Nam went the 9th Marines,
on a beach at Da Nang they stormed ashore.
Getting used to C-Rats and
cold canned beans,
they were ready to die for the honor of the Corps.
It was still '65 when some others
like "The Herd" and "The Big Red One."
Sent to Bien Hoa and An
Khe they banded,
"Tropic Lightning", "Screaming Eagles", each by the
Back in The World there was less to
for nothing was as bad as a day in The Nam.
Trench Foot; Kraits;
and ALICE pack gear,
were first to unnerve even the calm.
On patrol in the bush was a bad time
with punji stakes, toe poppers, and trip wires around.
looked for Charlie with many a close call,
tough going near Cu Chi where
Riding a Huey into a Hot LZ,
Cavalry did meet the NVA.
M-60s and Bloopers made noise near Plei Me,
and the valley called Ia Drang was red that day.
F-4 Phantoms flying low level strikes,
began what was called the Rolling Thunder.
Ho Chi Minh Trail resorted
which made the Gooks start to wonder.
Dust Off missions usually saved the
when the Viet Cong did their worst.
Medivac Choppers only a few
extracted the wounded who needed help first.
Brown Water Navy patrolled the Mekong,
especially the Rung Sat Special Zone.
Most hoped they wouldn't be too
as the Swift Boat's engine continued to drone.
Summer of '67 saw heavy fighting at Con
in the north on the edge of the DMZ.
Green Berets and "Cidgees"
had been over-run,
and for miles NVA was all the Marines could see.
By the time most had the thousand-yard
thoughts of their DEROS date had been stirred.
Thirty days and a
wake-up their only care,
short-timers waited for the Freedom Bird.
The taking of the hill numbered 875,
was a job that was given to the 173rd.
November near Dak To - not many
but cries of wounded can still be heard.
The Five O'Clock Follies in the city of
could not explain the massive build-up.
Many a coffin being
made by the Cong,
would help to bring their courage up.
Recon and Rangers could see it coming,
the SEALs and SOGs saw it too.
The NVA and VC were up to something,
then in '68 it all came true.
For 77 days around Khe Sanh,
Marines kept fighting so bitterly.
The Tet Offensive had barely begun,
at Lang Vei was left only Willoughby.
Fighting for the Citadel in the city of
how many really died - none can tell.
Suicide Squads hit Saigon
during the day,
and even the U.S. Embassy almost fell.
By May '69 they were at Hill 937,
up in the A Shau Valley highland.
The 101st fought hard 'till day 11,
later Hamburger Hill was just abandoned.
More Cherry LTs and FNGs,
unsafe for others while In Country.
Humpin' through jungles, daring not to
'till a sniper would zap 'em from the trees.
In late '72 most things had gone sour,
and Grunts just tried stayin' alive.
General Abrams you see, had lost
all his power,
and the South did what it could to survive.
Nixon had decided that we would slowly
our allies didn't need us anymore.
Winning the war was now in
as politicians wanted us out of the war.
The fall of Saigon was a great big
it had come in April of '75.
Many returning Vets were treated as
most thought they were lucky just to be alive.
People now know that the War is over,
except for the night-fright here and there.
For the Vietnam Vet it's no
roll in the clover,
when you've been through Hell and there're few who
Many good men have their name on The
who gave their lives far away in The Nam.
Remember the Vet who
answered the call,
when you see him - extend him your palm.
contributed: E. Jonathan