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Chilled ... Middle of the Tropics
 

Mist and fog hang in the air . . .

did we leave any anybody . . ?
medevacs in ... and chilled

Author: F. Hadowsky
Sgt 1st Inf. Div.
'67-'68

(© 1997)

submitted by John Logan

F. Hadowsky
Sgt 1st Inf. Div.
'67-'68

 

CHILLED

Middle of the tropics
Triple canopy jungle
Elephant grass
Heat waves shimmering off rice paddies
Sweat running from every pore
Wringing wet - soaked from head to toe
Yet, ice water flows through your veins

It started early
Mist and fog hang in the air every one glued to the como net
Listening to sit reps as frenetic squawking
comes from inadequate Pric-25's
D Company is getting hit ... and hard
Horseshoe ambush, perfectly executed

At first, feeling helpless
And then over to help unload ammo for the artillery
That's trying to blast a way out for them
Finally, the fog lifts
Scramble to already cranking choppers - Cavalry on the way

Much as they can carry - much as we can carry
skimming twenty feet over the trees
Rotor noises blending with silent prayers and gritted teeth
Then M-60 doorgunner cover fire, Hot L-Z
Deploy and move forward sweeping wide
Resistance strong at first - keep pushing
Resistance fades to quickly
Damn ! Delaying tactics - Keep pushing

Then you're there
Incredible scene
Can't stop
Get up a perimeter and start the hard work
Medics working beyond capacity
Those that know help
Triage
Sucking chest wounds
Lacerated stomachs
Lost appendages
Shredded by shrapnel
Punctured by bullets
Shrieking
Crying
Moaning "mom?"
L - Z established
medevacs in
Hustle, hurry
Stretchers, shelter-half litters
Racing Father Time, "Dr. Death"

Back to the "scene"
Unzippered black body bags
Put parts B and C in bag A
Methodical
Tear streaked faces
Lump in throat
Pain in heart
No talk
"Pull out, Mount up"
Higher now, lighter load
Sun setting
Did we leave any anybody or any ...

NDP
Clean weapons
Load magazines
Mechanical
Blank stares
Black hearts
                                     And chilled

F. Hadowsky
Sgt 1st Inf. Div.
'67-'68

 

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