PASS ME THE RICE, by Robert G. Kay, Lieutenant, Ret. USN

by Robert G. Kay, Lieutenant, Ret. US Navy

VSPA.comBOOK REVIEW, by Don Poss
Webmaster, and

by Robert G. Kay, Lieutenant, Ret. US Navy
Publication Date: May 12, 2011, Barnes and Nobel, and others

Robert G. Kay's duties aboard Vietnamese Navy Junks patrolling the South China Sea and a Vietnamese River Assault Group, takes the reader along enemy infested rivers and coastal waters. Pass Me The Rice is a raw, raunchy, and riveting ‘nothing is sacred’ living testament as to ‘how it was’.

Vietnam veterans try to remember the good-times and friends. Pass Me The Rice is in your face with the good, bad, funny, outrageous, absurd and genuine ugliness of combat.

Robert Kay's characters are alive and you quickly care for them, and can’t help hoping they’ve survived the war. Experience the clash between negotiators and exterminators: Lazy ARVN and Americans, politicians, bureaucrats, media, and REMF’s, vs. the Warriors -- only the warriors engage the enemy, and kill them.

Sail with Robert Kay as he is keelhauled and beached into a desk job with the Staff of the Senior Naval Advisor in Saigon, and back again for a second tour of diseased rivers, monsoons, steaming jungle rivers, bloated bodies, wasted-dead, dead-wasted, and forest-stripped agent-orange wastelands.

TET ’68 erupts with infiltration by North Vietnamese Army Regulars and the Viet Cong National Liberation Front, and the ever present obnoxious politicians and dead journalists who thought they were in charge -- and TET '69 is still full speed ahead!

Ladies, Pass Me The Rice is your proof that men, warriors, really are from a testosterone-laden Mars. Firefights, crossfires, ambushes, sudden death and a brutal assault surprising an enemy concealed for ambush that leaves 150 KIA of the 9th NVA Regiment. Standby to cringe at the method used to encourage a POW to talk, and visualize the outcome if he doesn’t in this page-turning first-hand saga.

Just when you’re ready for an R&R after bloodletting KIAs, WIAs, MIAs, POWs, punji stakes, minefields, experience a dustoff medevac up close and personal, then evac to Japan and the USA. "Goodbye Vietnam — it was a hell of a ride", and so was Pass Me The Rice.

I can hardly wait for the sequel that must follow, in Robert Kay's straight forward fast-paced manner, that will take us to The World and back after his combat wounds, amputation, and medical retirement from the Navy, then, within months see him overcome and rise like the proverbial phoenix returning as a civilian to South Vietnam, remaining behind in 1973 when US combat forces are withdrawn, and leaving only days before the fall of Saigon in April 1975.

Pass Me The Rice, a four-star must read!

Don Poss
Webmaster, and

About Author Robert G. Kay (War-Stories Life Member #84):

1. All of the events depicted in "Pass Me The Rice" are authentic because of my direct participation in them and also having pertinent facts provided to me personally. As a Naval Officer, I spent two years as an Advisor to the Vietnamese Navy's Junk Force patrolling the waters from the Gulf of Thailand to the South China Sea and the River Assault Groups on the rivers of South Vietnam.

2. In between those two assignments, I was on the Senior Naval Advisor's Staff in Saigon for several months where I created and edited "The Advisors Newsletter," a monthly effort for the men in the field. The 3rd edition earned me the Chief of Naval Information's Best Navy/Marine Newsletter award for the Third Quarter 1968.

3. I graduated from the University of Minnesota and currently reside in Pensacola, Florida with my Vietnamese wife Kim. I retired from the Navy in November '69 due to wounds received in Vietnam and also retired from Civil Service in October 1997 where I was a Supervisory Repair Engineer for Cruisers and Battleships.
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