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Miscellaneous => LandzDown Lounge => Topic started by: winchester73 on May 24, 2020, 01:35:04 PM

Title: Memorial Day 2020
Post by: winchester73 on May 24, 2020, 01:35:04 PM
For mitch, the Phantom Phixer, who kept the F4s flying ... for Ghost, we remember, always.  “Hit my smoke”.

"If you are able, save for them a place inside of you and save one backward glance when you are leaving for the places they can no longer go. Be not ashamed to say you loved them, though you may or may not have always. Take what they have taught you with their dying and keep it with your own. And in that time when men decide and feel safe to call the war insane, take one moment to embrace those gentle heroes you left behind."

Major Michael Davis O'Donnell
“Letters from Pleiku”
1 January 1970
170th Assault Helicopter Company
Dak To, Vietnam
(Shot down 24 March 1970)

Memorial Day (originally called Decoration Day) is a day of remembrance for those who have died in the service of the United States. Freedom is not free.  All gave some, some gave all.  Honor and remember those who paid the ultimate price, and be grateful for their sacrifice.

In 2020 it seems especially fitting to remember Medal of Honor recipient Command Sergeant Major Bennie G. Adkins, who in 1966 was a sergeant first class serving with detachment A-102, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces in the Republic of Vietnam ... and who died 17 April 2020 at the age of 86 after a 23-day last battle against the complications caused by coronavirus (COVID-19).

Adkins was awarded the Medal of Honor for acts of valor during the North Vietnamese attack on Camp A Shau (9-12 March 1966).  He and 16 other Green Berets were holed up in a small undermanned and unfortified reconnaissance camp next to the Ho Chi Minh Trail, 50 km SW of Huế and 2 km E of the Laos border.  The citation in part reads:  “During the thirty-eight hour battle and forty-eight hours of escape and evasion, fighting with mortars, machine guns, recoilless rifles, small arms, and hand grenades, it was estimated that Sergeant First Class Adkins killed between 135 and 175 of the enemy while sustaining eighteen different wounds to his body.”

Adkins was credited with running through exploding mortar rounds to drag several wounded comrades to safety, and later exposing himself to sniper fire to carry wounded comrades to a more secure position.  Within the communications bunker, he single-handedly killed numerous insurgents ... ultimately, the camp was overwhelmed and the order was given to evacuate.  Adkins and a small group of soldiers destroyed all signal equipment and classified documents, dug their way out of the rear of the bunker, and fought their way out of the camp.  He and his group were unable to reach the last evacuation helicopter because of his efforts to carry a wounded soldier to the extraction point (leave no one behind).  Adkins rallied the remaining survivors and led the group into the jungle, evading the enemy for 48 hours until they were rescued by helicopter on 12 March.

With many of his A Shau comrades in attendance at the White House ceremony, Command Sergeant Major Bennie Adkins received the Medal of Honor from President Obama on 15 September 2014. During the presentation, President Obama commented “I have to be honest, in a battle and daring escape that lasted four days, Bennie performed so many acts of bravery we actually don’t have time to talk about all of them.”

The Special Forces team suffered 5 KIA and 12 WIA (100% casualties).  Adkins told a news conference at Fort Benning that he couldn’t accept the honor alone.  "The medal doesn’t really belong to me. I’m just a keeper of it for those other 16 in the battle, especially the five who didn’t make it."

Command Sergeant Major Bennie Adkins became the 16th member of the 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne) to wear the Medal of Honor.
Title: Re: Memorial Day 2020
Post by: hayc59 on May 24, 2020, 04:18:00 PM
Very cool winchester73!! Love your heart and soul...made me cry brother
I would like to thank my dad
Lorimer Hay-Chapman DFC BSM AM
Col. (Army of U.S. & RSV.; AF-RSV.) & Reg. AF. Retired
ID #'s-39042878, A0836983, 42417A, & 533180003FR

-WWII ('42-,46) Pvt. to Lt. - Participated in the defeat of
Nazi Germany & the Empire of Japan.
-KW ('51 & '52) Capt.-Fought Communist Forces in Korea.
-VN ('64 & "65) Maj.-Fought Communist Forces in Vietnam.
-CW (45 yrs.+) L/Col.-Contributed to the end of the Cold War, and the total collapse of the Communist Soviet Union.

Command Pilot & Instructor in fighter, helicopter, cargo and special (Agent Orange) aircraft, Flew 175 Combat Mission

he is front row bottom right!! RIP
Title: Re: Memorial Day 2020
Post by: Corrine on May 24, 2020, 08:33:00 PM
My annual post, Security Garden (, updated to mention both Mitch & Larry.
Title: Re: Memorial Day 2020
Post by: hayc59 on May 24, 2020, 09:17:54 PM
Very thoughtful Corrine