Ain’t Released Me Yet
Memoirs of a REMF
Copyright© 2016 by Robert B. Martin, IV
All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without express written permission from the copyright owner, except for the use of brief quotations in a book review or scholarly journal. I have attempted to recreate events, locales, and conversations from my memories of them.
A Letter from Vietnam
“I get mail. Therefore, I am.”.......Scott Adams
I received a letter from Gary Simon shortly after returning home. He was still at Camp Eagle but would be leaving soon. He wrote to tell me about an incident that took place several days after I left the battalion.
The NCOs had conducted a drug search of the hooches, which came as no surprise. But one of the sergeants noticed a loose sandbag on the outside wall of my previous abode. My old personal area was on the other side of the wall. The sergeant pulled the sandbag away to see if any drugs were hidden behind it. Instead of drugs, he found a hand grenade with its pin wired to the sandbag. By pulling on the sandbag, he had also pulled the pin from the grenade. He saw it in time and flattened himself against the sandbagged wall. The sandbags on each side of the grenade directed the explosive force and shrapnel outward and inward (toward my old personal space). Luckily, the sergeant escaped injury. The grenade was probably put there before I left. Perhaps at the same time the other two grenades were hidden in the blast wall behind the hooch. Except this one was rigged to explode.
After that letter from Gary, I tried to put it all behind me, and for almost twenty years, I did not think of Vietnam very much. That is, not until that hot July day in Denton, TX, in 1989 when Laura Palmer read those twenty-six words.
“Bob Kalsu was running to meet a chopper that had just landed at Fire Support Base Ripcord, on a desolate jungle mountaintop, when he was killed.”
Continued in Postscript, The GI Revolt, Bounties, Fragging, Desertion, and Draft Dodging….