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Marines loading into Chopper | by Tom Jaynes
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Marines loading into Chopper

I ran from the site of my picture 1510 over to this operation where they are loading into choppers for the trip back out to the USS Valley Forge LPH-8, off the coast of the South China Sea.


I usually hung back, frequently taking the last ride out. The technique let me get some little incidents that I would have missed otherwise.


At times I was mentally drained. Nobody would miss me if I just didn't go one morning. I could just pull my olive drab blanket up over my face and shut out Viet-Nam.



The next morning I would run across the flight deck and into a chopper that would place me about 2 kilometers on the north side of a small village held by the Viet Cong. The squad I was with would start the pincer movement, closing with other squads, pushing them in until Charlie had nowhere to go.


We killed them all. There would be no prisoners this day. The score was about 30 VC dead, 7 US Marines dead. War is expensive.


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Taken on January 8, 2010