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Diary Entry August 16, 1968 Wounded On My Birthday

Today is August 16, and my birthday was on the second of August, but since they just brought us the mail in a helicopter I am just opening my letters. The first one is from my girl friend Janie and she is wishing me a happy and safe birthday. I have another one from some friends of mind and one more letter from my mother. I only have a few minutes to read my letters because we are way out here on a mission. We just finished eating some hot food that was brought to us, we don’t get many days like that. Most of the times we eat out of cans or packaged food from army poaches. We are in the mansoon season whent it rains for three months continuessly and even if they supply us with dry clothes, within the half day we will be soaking wet again.
The letters are wishing me many happy birthday wishes and I guess I’ll lite up this one candle that was sent to me and have my friends here celebrate even if it’s fourteen days late. I haven’t had a day off after so many combat missions so now is as good as any.
Besides, they just spotted some enemy not too far ahead and they are asking for a volunteer group to form a killer team and go seek the enemy and engage. They are too close to our area and we don’t want them hitting our camp area.I didn’t ask for it, but when some of my buddies did, I couldn’t say no to them. We are like one big family that depends on each other for support.
The helicopters are here and we have to load them so that they can drop us off further up north so the enemy will not get a clear view as to where we are at right now. They will watch the helicopters arriving and letting us off while they lay in a low profile to get a fix on us and ambush us later. It’s a game, we know they are there, they know we are coming, it’s just a matter of who ambuses who.
My legs on hanging out from the opening of the helicopter as it vibrates up in the air in the skies. Boy, it’s a lovely sight to see if you like trees and such. I do, and I find beauty even in this hostile enviroment. The hills and the mountain side from here looks like something I have seen in pictures in magazines, but I don’t forget that it is full of hiding places for the Viet-Cong.
I will be the first one to get off the helicopter and I must quickly set myself down and ready to fire my weapon. I must project the ones that will unload after me. I must provide a fire cover if someone begins to shoot at us. I need to put my diary away, make the sign of the cross, say a little prayer and be ready for action. I’ll write later if nothing happens to me.
We landed safetly and we received no resistance from the enemy. They are letting set camp and coming for us tonight when they believe we will be sleeping. It will be an ambush if we allow them, but we have our own plans. We will make ourselves visible to them, they will not attack during the day. They can see how heavily armed we are, they wouldn’t stand a chance on a one to one.
Soon as it gets dark and they have a lock on us, we will move. We will leave a jacket, a shirt, a pair of pants or socks where we were before. It will be a mark for them thinking we are still there in the same position. In the dark, the objects we left will be fresh in their eyesights. They will think it is one of us and they will attack.
We will move swiftly in order to not give away our new positions or be detected that we are countering their moves. We will ambush them instead, but we must be careful not to get caught in a crossfire. It is vital that we pick our secondary positions and know our line of fire. Our claymore mines will be attached to a firing cap with trip wires and all and once they go off, the fight is on. It’s almost dark, I need to stop writing and prepare to move stealtly under the cover of night. If I make it through this night, I shall write about the battle and casualties in the daylight. I have made plans to have this diary given to my girlfriend if and when I die. If you are reading it my love, I love you, forever.

In order not to make the story so long for some of you, I will continue with diary entry august 17, 1968 on another enty. It will give you a chance to walk away without learning more about what happens in a war. Wish you would write a comment to see if it’s worth writing or if I’m just spinning my wheels. I respect your opinion if you find this boring and don’t want to read something too long. However, if only one person is interested, then by all means I will continue writing. Thanks in advance of you opinion, I respect it no matter what.

Copyright © 2008 Oscarelizondo

Diary Entry August 16, 1968 Wounded On My Birthday

oscarelizondo

Harlingen, United States

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Artist's Description

Here is another entry from my diary about the war in Viet-nam. I know that many soldiers want to forget, but there might be a few that want to exchange memories because they are embedded in our nightmares and dreams forever. Sorry, if I offend anybody, sorry if some of you are wives that have lost a soldier, sorry if you are a parent of a son that lost his life for our country, and I’m sorry if brings back memories that you want to forget. I live these nightmares all the time, and they are so real.

Artwork Comments

  • Norma-jean Morrison
  • lisameryl
  • oscarelizondo
  • homeartist
  • oscarelizondo
  • Pam Humbargar
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