Texas Aggies in Vietnam: War Stories

Texas Aggies in Vietnam: War Stories

by Michael Lee Lanning

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Overview


From its inception, graduates of the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas, now Texas A&M University, have marched off to fight in every conflict in which the United States has been involved. The Vietnam War was no different. The Corps of Cadets produced more officers for the conflict in Southeast Asia than any institution other than the US service academies. Michael Lee Lanning, Texas A&M University class of 1968, has now gathered over three dozen recollections from those who served.

As Lanning points out, “anytime Aggie Vietnam veterans get together—whether it is two or two hundred of them—war stories begin.” The tales they relate about the paddies, the jungles, the highlands, the waterways, and the airways provide these veterans with an even greater understanding of the war they survived. They also allow glimpses into the frequent dangers of firefights, the camaraderie of patrol, and often humorous responses to inexplicable situations.

These revelations provide insight not only into the realities of war but also speak to the character of the graduates of Texas A&M University. As Lanning concludes, “these war stories are as much a part of service as is that old green duffle bag, a few rows of colorful ribbons, and a pride that does not diminish. In reality, there is only one story about the Vietnam War. We all just tell it differently.” 

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781623494704
Publisher: Texas A&M University Press
Publication date: 10/25/2016
Series: Williams-Ford Texas A&M University Military History Series , #152
Pages: 328
Sales rank: 1,186,702
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 9.50(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author


MICHAEL LEE LANNING, a retired lieutenant colonel who served in Vietnam, is the author of sixteen nonfiction books on military history, including The Only War We Had: A Platoon Leader’s Journal of Vietnam and Vietnam, 1969–1970: A Company Commander’s Journal. He lives in Crystal Beach, Texas.

Table of Contents

Editor's Note xi

Introduction xv

Michael Beggs (1968, Squadron 1) 1st Marine Division, 1971 1

John Blevins (1961, Band) 357th Tactical Fighter Squadron, 1966-73 4

Jim Lanning (1964, D-1) 25th Infantry Division, 1966 11

Jeffery Murray (1973, Squadron 6 and H-2) 281st Aviation Company 1968-69 15

Ed McDaniel (1965, D-1) Naval Intelligence Liaison Officer-Quang Ngai, 1969-70 18

Clarence Sasser (1973, Civilian) 9th Infantry Division, 1968 24

Tom Darling (1954, B Athletics and Squadron 11) 824th Bomb Squadron, 1966 28

Mac Phillips (1969, D-1) 1st Cavalry Division, 1970-71 41

Ben Goodwyn (1962, D-1) 7th Marine Regiment, 1965 43

Larry Sommers (1968, C-1) 4th Infantry Division, 1969-70 48

Bill Park (1964, G-3) 55th Military Intelligence Detachment, 1966 50

Hale Burr (1965, Squadron 7 and Corps Staff) 13th Tactical Fighter Squadron, 1968 52

Michael Lee Lanning (1968, D-1) 199th Light Infantry Brigade, 1969 55

Mike Richardson (1965, A-1 and 1st Brigade Staff) First Marine Air Wing, 1969 56

Gerald Madeley (1964, Band) PACAF Procurement Center Thailand, 13th Air Force, 1971-73 57

Carol Micki Hunt, widow of Joe Bush (1966, A-1) Army Element, Joint US Military Advisory Group Thailand, MA AG Laos, 1968-69 59

Loren Parsons (1968, E-2) 64th Finance Section, 1970 96

Tom Durdin (1955, Squadron 2) 12th Special Operations Squadron, 1967-68 98

Lee Sanders (1964, D-1) 101st Airborne Division, 1969 102

Mike Burroughs (1967, Squadrons 13 and 15) 553rd Reconnaissance Wing, 1969 105

John Erskine (1960, Squadron 2) 5th Special Forces Group, 1966 108

Jeffery Murray (1973, Squadron 6 and H-2) 281st Aviation Company, 1968-69 110

Frank Bonvillain, (1967, D-1 and B-1) 173rd Airborne Brigade, 1969 111

Thomas Zapata (1967, E-2) 525th Military Intelligence Group, 1969 132

Mac Phillips (1969, D-1) 101st Airborne Division, 1970-71 133

Larry Vetter (1964, A-1 and 1-3) 3rd Marine Division, 1965-66 and 1968-69 135

Steve Hightower (1968, D-3 and A-2) 101st Airborne Division, 1969 136

Ed McDaniel (1965, D-1) Naval Intelligence Liaison Officer-Quang Ngai, 1969-70 140

Larry Sommers (1968, C-1) Infantry Officer Basic Course, 1969-70 142

James H. Willbanks (1969, D-2) Advisory Team 87, 18th ARVN Division Combat Assistance Team) 1972 143

Hale Burr (1965, Squadron 7 and Corps Staff) 20th Tactical Support Squadron, 1968 149

René Saenz (1967, A-2) Headquarters, US Army Vietnam, 1969 156

Mike Jackson (D-1, 1966) 1st Cavalry Division, 1967-68 157

Jeffery Murray (1973, Squadron 6 and H-2) 281st Aviation Company, 1968-69 163

Jim Lanning (1964, D-1) 25th Infantry Division, 1966-67 164

Mike Burroughs (1967, Squadrons 13 and 15) 553rd Reconnaissance Wing, 1969 166

Tom Templer (1965, A-1) nth Armored Cavalry Regiment 1968-69 167

Paul Dresser (1964, E-2 and Corps Staff) 5th Special Forces Group, 1967 175

Ed McDaniel (1965, D-1) Naval Intelligence Liaison Officer-Quang Ngai, 1969-70 176

Bill Morgan (1968, A-1) 9th Infantry Division, 1969-70 178

Tom Gardner (1967, Band) 119th Aviation Company, 1970 184

Homer McCall (D-1, 1966) 29th Support Group, 1970 185

Mike Feighny (1965, D-2) 313th Radio Research Battalion, 1971 186

Bill Beall, (1968, Band) Detachment B-43, 5th Special Forces Group, 1971 188

Mike Richardson (1965, A-1 and 1st Brigade Staff) First Marine Air Wing, 1969 192

Jim Lanning (1964, D-1) 25th Infantry Division, 1966-67 198

Jeffery Murray (1973, Squadron 6 and H-2) 281st Aviation Company, 1969 201

Charles H. (Butch) Gregory (1964, F-2) 525th Military Intelligence Group, 1967-68 203

Bill Vasser (1964, Squadrons 9 and 16) 480th Tactical Fighter Squadron, 366th Fighter Wing, 1968 205

Mac Phillips (1969, D-1) 101st Airborne Division, 1970-71 214

Larry Sommers (1968, C-1) 4th Infantry Division, 1969-70 216

Bruce G. McKenty (1970, B-2) 1st Cavalry Division, 1972-73 217

Frank Bonvillain (1967, D-1 and B-1) 173rd Airborne Brigade, 1969 220

Gerald Madeley (1964, Band) PACAF Procurement Center Thailand, 13th Air Force 1971-73 232

John Erskine (1960, Squadron 2) 5th Special Forces Group, 1966 234

George Isleib (1968, D-1) 101st Airborne Division, 1969 235

Frank Supercinski (1964, A-1) MACV, 1968 238

Mike Burroughs (1967, Squadrons 13 and 15) 553rd Reconnaissance Wing, 1969 240

Jim Lanning (1964, D-1) 25th Infantry Division, 1966-67 241

Mike Richardson (1965 A-1 and 1st Brigade Staff) First Marine Air Wing, 1969 245

Jeffery Murray (1973, Squadron 6 and H-2) 281st Aviation Company, 1968-69 246

Michael Lee Lanning (1968, D-1) 199th Light Inrantry Brigade, 1969 249

Jerry Patterson (1969, H-1) 9th Marine Amphibious Brigade, 1973 251

Mac Phillips (1969, D-1) 101st Airborne Division, 1970-71 252

Hale Burr (1965, Squadron 7 and Corps Staff), 13th Tactical Fighter Squadron, 1968 254

Ray Dabney (1970, D-1) 1st Cavalry Division, 1973 259

Jon Beal (1969, Band) Marine Detachment, USS Oklahoma City, 1975 261

J. Duncan Williams (1971, Band) 63rd Military Airlift Wing, 1973 263

Appendix A Texas Aggies Killed in Vietnam 267

Appendix B Texas Aggies Who Died on Active Duty during the Vietnam Era 271

Glossary 275

About the Editor 297

Index 299

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