November 8, 1965 – Operation Hump. A tribute to the brave men who fought this one….


A man who is good enough to shed his blood for the country is good enough to be given a square deal afterwards.
-Theodore Roosevelt-

Every once in a while I like to pay tribute to certain troops who have sacrificed their all fighting for the American Military. This tribute goes back to the Vietnam war, to Operation Hump. A search and destroy mission that was fought from November 5 – 8th, of 1965, and involved the 173rd Airborne brigade, and some troops from Australia. The total force for the American forces that day were about 400. The enemy who ambushed the 173rd, numbered around 1200. Here is their story, along with the video of the song 8th of November by Big and Rich, with an introduction by Kris Kristofferson.

Operation Hump was a search and destroy operation initiated on 5 November 1965[1] by the 173rd Airborne Brigade, in an area about 17.5 miles north of Bien Hoa. The 1st Battalion,[2] Royal Australian Regiment, deployed south of the Dong Nai River while the 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry, conducted a helicopter assault on an LZ northwest of the Dong Nai and Song Be Rivers. Little contact was made through 7 November, when B and C Companies settled into a night defensive position southeast of Hill 65, a triple-canopy jungled hill.

Operation detail

At about 0600 on the morning of 8 November C Company began a move northwest toward Hill 65, while B Company moved northeast toward Hill 78. Shortly before 0800, C Company was engaged by a sizable enemy force well dug in to the southern face of Hill 65. At 0845, B Company was directed to wheel in place and proceed toward Hill 65 with the intention of relieving C Company.

B Company reached the foot of Hill 65 at about 0930 and moved up the hill. It became obvious that there was a large enemy force in place on the hill, C Company was getting hammered, and by chance, B Company was forcing the enemy’s right flank.

Under pressure from B Company’s flanking attack the enemy force—most of a People’s Liberation Armed Forces (Viet Cong) regiment—moved to the northwest, whereupon the B Company commander called in air and artillery fire on the retreating troops. B Company halted in place in an effort to locate and consolidate with C Company’s platoons, managing to establish a coherent defensive line running around the hilltop from southeast to northwest, but with little cover on the southern side.

Meanwhile, the PLAF commander realized that his best chance was to close with the US forces so that the 173rd’s air and artillery fire could not be effectively employed. PLAF troops attempted to out-flank the US position atop the hill from both the east and the southwest, moving his troops closer to the Americans. The result was shoulder-to-shoulder attacks up the hillside, hand-to-hand fighting, and isolation of parts of B and C Companies but the Americans held against two such attacks. Although the fighting continued after the second massed attack, it reduced in intensity as the PLAF troops again attempted to disengage and withdraw. By late afternoon it seemed that contact had been broken off, allowing the two companies to prepare a night defensive position while collecting their dead and wounded in the center of the position. Although a few of the most seriously wounded were extracted by USAF helicopters using Stokes litters, the triple-canopy jungle prevented the majority from being evacuated until the morning of 9 November.

Operation results and aftermath

The result of the battle was heavy losses on both sides—48 Paratroopers dead, many more wounded, and 403 dead PLAF troops.

Operation Hump is memorialized in a song by Big and Rich named 8 November (Introduction, by Kris Kristofferson):

“On November 8th 1965, the 173rd Airborne Brigade on “Operation Hump”, war zone “D” in Vietnam, were ambushed by over 1200 VC. 48 American soldiers lost their lives that day. Severely wounded and risking his own life, Lawrence Joel, a medic, was the first living black man since the Spanish-American War to receive the United States Medal of Honor for saving so many lives in the midst of battle that day. Our friend, Niles Harris, retired 25 years United States Army, the guy who gave Big Kenny his top hat, was one of the wounded who lived. This song is his story. Caught in the action of kill or be killed, greater love hath no man than to lay down his life for a friend.

To me, it is amazing that any of the American forces survived this battle, as the enemy outnumbered the Americans 3 to 1. But the casualties tell the story. On the American side there were 48 killed, many wounded. 2 Australian MIA’s *located and repatriated to Australia on the 5th of June, 2007. The Commanders for the American side was the 173rd Airborne Brigade. The Commanders for the People’s Liberation Armed Forces (Viet Cong) are unknown. Their strength was around 1,200 and they lost 403 that day. The result was a standoff. To me, that means the American forces that day did America proud. And I am very proud of what the American soldiers did on that bloody day on the 8th of November, 1965.

Here is the video.

This my friends is what we should be proud of. The ability of Americans to do the impossible. And to come out of it not losing. The song 8th of November is about one of those brave men that fought that day against overwhelming odds…..and lived to tell about it. God bless these men who fought and died that day for the American might, against oppressive odds.

As an addition to this, I got a comment from a Dutch Holland, who was there on the 8th of November, of 1965, and fought in that battle. He was wounded there. He gave some additional information that I felt needed to be added here.

I was wounded on Hill 65 during Operation Hump (B1/503d) and would like to add more history to our legacy. After the battle of Hill 65 the 1st Infantry Division found hospital records from the 272nd VC Regiment when they took over one of their unit locations. In those records the 272nd recorded over 800 deaths on or near Hill 65 on the 8th of November. The 272nd was attached to the elite VC 9th Division who the 173d Airborne Brigade went against throughout their tour in the War Zone “D” area. I would also like to mention and thank the USAF ParaMedics (PJ’s) who delivered us critical ammo and med supplies during our battle.

So that being added, I have to add, God bless all you who fought this battle, and Thank You all for your service.

God Bless America, her troops and her people
God Bless my readers, my listeners on BTR and my viewers on You Tube…

-Robert-

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About Robert P. Garding

I am a Reagan Conservative, who is very alarmed at the Liberals who have just taken over our government, who want to change our Constitution
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79 Responses to November 8, 1965 – Operation Hump. A tribute to the brave men who fought this one….

  1. Dutch Holland says:

    I was wounded on Hill 65 during Operation Hump (B1/503d) and would like to add more history to our legacy. After the battle of Hill 65 the 1st Infantry Division found hospital records from the 272nd VC Regiment when they took over one of their unit locations. In those records the 272nd recorded over 800 deaths on or near Hill 65 on the 8th of November. The 272nd was attached to the elite VC 9th Division who the 173d Airborne Brigade went against throughout their tour in the War Zone “D” area. I would also like to mention and thank the USAF ParaMedics (PJ’s) who delivered us critical ammo and med supplies during our battle.
    reply from Robert: First off Sir, I would like to thank you for your service….and God Bless you for it. Vietnam was a war that I tried to join to fight, but was not accepted due to a health disorder that the doctors wouldn’t release me to go. But, in this blog, I treasure each one of you men who did go and fight. And I always say God Bless you all.

    Thank you sir for this additional information. If it is alright with you, I would like to add it to the post.

  2. Charles Restivo says:

    I flew Hueys in Vietnam in 1967-68, and I still think of the many deaths in my unit. I served in War Zone C and the Iron Triangle, “Marlboro” country. The war still affects me.
    reply from Robert: First off sir, Thank you for your service, and hope God Blesses you richly. As for the war still affecting you, I can imagine. I never got to go though I tried. I know that the war would have affected me for the rest of my life. My only comfort would have come from having American citizens thanking me for my service. So that is what I do. Our military is the best in the world and always has been, and anyone who serves deserves praise and love. God Bless you for your service.

  3. Rick says:

    To Dutch Holland, thank you for your service sir! I was wondering if you knew my uncle pfc Herman Brown? He was In the 1st Bn B Co. 503rd/173rd airborne and died fighting on hill 65 on 8-Nov-1965.
    And thank you Elwoodin for posting a tribute to a group of brave men that will never be forgotten.
    reply from Robert: Your welcome. I thank God for every one of those brave men. There is no braver sacrifice in the world than what these men did that day. I honor them and their memories every day.

  4. Michael B Johnson says:

    I spent two tours in Nam; I went over with the 1st Inf Div out of Ft. Riley Ks. We got in on the tail end of the battle hill 65. The toughest men I ever saw did one hell of a job; We just helped clean up afterwards; I just can’t see how anyone of you lived through that battle. The Good Lord had to be with you that day. God Bless you all. I went back in 70-71 with the 11th Armored Cav. Got into a few tight spots but nothing even close to what all of you went through. My prayer is that the hold it had on you is starting to ease up some. God Bless.
    reply from Robert: God Bless you and your service sir. I have gotten many comments on this one from men that were actually there, like you, and it amazes me the courage that it took to be there. There are none better than the military of the United States….bar none. And God bless you all for the sacrifices that you made to be there.

  5. travis butler says:

    My grandpa served in this battle Dallas “bud” Butler and I remember him telling little stories about it, but kept most of it to himself. This song came out a bit before he passed away and he was extremely proud it helped me understand more of what had happened. Thanks to him I am joining the military here soon, and am extremely proud of the legacy I get to carry on. Thank you to all the men and women who have served.
    reply from Robert: I am glad that you got to know a little of this battle that your grandpa served and fought in. Even though he is now gone, we can still say God Bless him for his service to this great country. And when you join, the same will be said of you. God Bless you for wanting to serve. This is the greatest country in the world, no matter what Obama says.

  6. Please, if any out there would talk to me about this I’d love it, because I’d like to have a better understanding. Thanks.
    reply from Robert: In the months since I wrote this tribute to the men who fought in Operation Hump, I have received a few comments from men who were there and fought there. Maybe you could look them up.

  7. My email is travis.butler26@yahoo.com. I didnt see it on there, and just wanted to make sure. Please if any one could tell me much, please do. Thank you.

  8. travis says:

    Sir, I would love to help in whatever way I could. Email me. I’d be more than happy too. And God has blessed me with the choice to go in the service. I live in the greatest country in the world and wouldn’t trade it for nothing, and I don’t want it to change anytime soon. And if that means fighting for her, then I’m ready. I’m a junior in high school and my history teacher is teaching on the Vietnam war and gave an assignment to make a protest button on the war. Well I refused to do it I was so upset because of what I lost. Because this war, and so many, are disrespected by these protest buttons. Even if its just a homework assignment. Well I got a zero for the assignment, but I don’t care. I know my grandpa would be proud of the decision I made.

    I knew a lot of Julius house always called “casa” but anyway I could help I’d like too. I want to be involved any way possible. My email is on here. Please let me know. Thank you sir. This is amazing by the way my grandpa would have been very proud and it means a lot to me and my family and many more I’m sure that you did this. Thank you.
    reply from Robert: I know that your grandpa is proud of you. You took a stand. Something that more need to take. The Liberal Teachers in our schools are more interested in indoctrinating our kids than in actually teaching them.
    I know that I constantly listen to what my kids come home with, and if it is something ‘anti’ American, then I set them straight. What you are doing is helping in more ways than you can know, because it tells the other kids in class that maybe something is wrong in what the teacher is doing. The best way to do it is speak up. Let them know why you wouldn’t do the assignment. Let them know that it is disrespectful to the thousands that lost they’re lives fighting in that war, or any other war.

    Let them know that war is never the answer, but sometimes, war is not possible to avoid, and if you are fighting for your freedoms, it is necessary because freedom is NOT free. NEVER HAS BEEN and it never will be. Ask any veteran, and he will tell you. God Bless you and keep up the great work for your country. You are right. This is the greatest nation this world has ever seen, and I for one am tired of her being torn down by our leaders and others who do not wish her to continue.

  9. travis says:

    Thanks sir. Well my teacher said to get creative, and she was for sure a liberal. I told her she was wrong. I made a button saying LIKE IT OR LEAVE IT! with a flag on it. She said, ‘why do that’, and I tell her “because you seem to love the freedoms my family and many others fight for, so I wanna keep it that way. Either you people learn to respect what they sacrificed for us, or get out. These people going over seas are normal people, and are doing this because its what is needed to be done. I told her that “I understand you have your beliefs and I’m okay with that, but I also have mine. But i disagree when you teach your beliefs to the kids that don’t have a point of view yet because you are just pushing them towards your ways and it is a free country. They should look at it the way they want, not the way a teacher says its done and she didn’t like it too much.
    reply from Robert: That took guts, but I am glad that you are sticking to your guns. I know that your Grandpa would be so proud. This country is so worth fighting for, no matter what the liberals try to make us think. This whole thing of Obama and his administration apologizing to the Chinese for the law that Arizona just passed is stupid and undermines the authority that we have over our own country. That is what the liberal mentality is doing. Undermining America, and that is why I do this blog, my videos and my Blog Talk Radio show. We have to fight for our freedoms in any way we can. The war has to be won. Because mark my words…..we are in a war. Not just against Terrorism, but against Liberalism too. Both would destroy America if given the chance.

  10. travis says:

    Yeah, it was hard because the last week of school I really didn’t wanna be kicked out, but I knew I needed to convey how I believe it really was and lucky I didn’t get thrown out.
    But that’s completely true. People just drive me crazy, and liberals the most. They say they are patriotic and love this country, and so on, but I asked her; if you were to get drafted would you dodge. and she said yeah probably try and find a way out of it.
    I said, see, people like you want all the freedoms that have been fought and won by others, to have in this country and expect the exact same treatment as a vet or even just someone that is completely in support in this country no matter how bad our government, without having to sacrifice yourself for it. Then I asked do you really think I wanna go to Iraq, do you really think I wanna die? She didn’t say anything. I said no, I really don’t, but I understand what’s at stake and there’s no way I’m gonna let it go without a fight and if that means me, then so be it.
    I guess what I was getting at is, none of us wanna fight. None of us wanna lose those dear loved ones, but its a sacrifice that is asked for of the people that love this country, and want it to stay the way it is, with freedoms, for many generations to come understand that. I asked, do you want your son to grow up and not have all the freedoms we have or not be able to have their own beliefs, and she still didn’t reply. I said, well I sure don’t want that for my kids. I know this country is the greatest. The government is getting horrible and in need of fixing, but I will support this country no matter what.
    reply from Robert: You are beginning to realize, when confronted with the ideals that this country was built upon, that a liberal has NO answers to your questions about the greatness of this country and about the freedoms we have not being free. You are a good man. Keep up the good work and God Bless you. My prayers, and I know the prayers of my readers are with you and your endeavors. And God Bless you for thinking America is great and has to have patriotic sons and daughters to keep her that way.

  11. travis says:

    Hey just dropping in wondering how the talk show is going? Just out for summer, and am bored. I found out this weekend that I get private first class in October and am extremely excited.
    reply from Robert: I know there are liberals out there that would not be excited for you on this, but I am not one of them. Congratulations, and God Bless you for your service. I know that you will make your family proud. And your country. You will be in our prayers to get done safely what God has in store for you. Keep the mission in mind about keeping America safe, and yourself too. Look foreward to hearing from you and your adventures Travis. Thank you for wanting to serve the greatest Nation that this world has ever seen.

    As Ronald Reagan once said, and this is still true: “We have a rendezvous with destiny.” America is still great, as long as she has great Americans like you to protect her. God Bless you.

  12. Don Sproch says:

    This was a great history lesson for my 17 yr daughter. She likes the Big and Rich song and wanted to know what happened. Given that I was 7 on 11-8-65 we looked together. Thanks for insight.

    Given that I am an unemployed conservative, your web site has become a wealth of information. God Bless and stay safe.
    reply from Robert: Thank you for the complement. That makes this all worth while. I hope and pray that you find work soon, and you and your family will be in our prayers. Good luck and thanks again.

  13. travis says:

    Hey, I just can’t get myself to get away from this site I look at it all the time you have no idea what it means to my family you doing this. I hope they write like this about my unit when we come home, I leave in about 9 months for basic got my orders for Fort Benning Ga and i’m excited thanks again for this site sir it means a lot to me.
    reply from Robert: Your so welcome, and God Bless you for your service. This country is so great that it just drives me crazy that the politicians in Washington, on the left anyway are trying to tell us that America is the reason that everyone hates us. I miss the days of Ronald Reagan because when he talked of America, it was “the shining beacon on the hill” for everyone. America was the place to be and the place that was the best in the world. We don’t have that with Obama. Always remember, we here in the grassroots of America support all of our troops, even though the press will not give it any print. We thank God for all of you brave men and women who serve this great country. God bless you and have a happy and safe 4th.

  14. charles says:

    Thanks for taking the time for this and I wish I could have fought in that war, but I’m only 15 and I’m gonna try to be a seal or marine.
    reply from Robert: Well, I didn’t get to serve there either, though I did try. I was 18 in 1970 and I wanted to go but health problems wouldn’t allow that. I want to thank you in advance for your service to this great country, and God Bless you in your endeavor to do so. You will always be in the prayers of most Americans, who praise the soldiers with reverence and honor.

  15. trish shamblin pierce says:

    I am the second daughter of Theodore Maxie Shamblin who died on November 11th,1965 from this battle, “operation hump”. If there is anyone who knew my father, I would love to speak with you as I never knew him. I was born on July 16th,1965, so needless to say, I never knew my father. I only have a few pictures and some newspaper clippings. I guess I am just seeking some identity.
    thank you to ALL who serve and have served for this country and our liberties.
    reply from Robert: I know that your dad is looking down on you from Heaven and smiling. I hope that you find someone who will reply to you on this, who knew your dad. God bless you.

  16. John T. Keen says:

    My dad, 1st sgt. C.S. Keen was 1st sgt co.b 1/503d 173rd airborne brigade in Vietnam in 1965. Does anybody know him
    reply from Robert: I don’t know him, nor did I know him, but maybe one of my readers does. Good luck sir.

  17. Jim says:

    Dutch, I am very proud to call you my brother, a fellow Skysoldier and sure am glad you made it out of that alive. We can have a few more beers together.
    reply from Robert: Nothing more needs to be said here, except, God Bless you for your service.

  18. Chris says:

    To those that died on this day may the lord be with them and all that have died before and after these guys.
    i am hoping to enlist soon and go to bct after i finish high school
    reply from Robert: I am sure that these men know of your intentions, and they like all us true Americans are proud of your decision. God Bless you and my you do your service and get back home safely.

  19. Travis says:

    Hey Chris or Dutch did either of you know my grandfather Dallas A. Butler. They called him kid, and he was good buddies with Casa. Curious I wanted to know what my grandpa was like back then. Please send me something, cause its been 4 years now that he passed and I just got into the military myself. I’m PFC and 11 Bravo. I am gonna get my wings, because I was always told growing, that up if ya get in, you better get your wings so I gotta. Please email me or call me even cause I just wanna know more about him because I was to young when he passed away for him to tell me many stories about when he was over there. My email is travis.butler26@yahoo.com or call at 618-697-8262.

    reply from Robert: I hope that you find someone who can get you what you are looking for Travis. If someone contacts me on that, I will give them your number or something, or contact you. I know your grandfather is proud of you.

  20. Rick says:

    It’s a somber day, as today marks 45 years this battled occurred. Still thinking about you uncle Herman and those who lost their lives that day! In memory of PFC Herman Brown 7/16/47 – 11/8/65. We will never forget!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    reply from Robert: I was going to do a post on this today, but you said everything, in a shorter more concise way than I ever could have, and you were much better. Because we ill never ever forget the sacrifices these men, and others made for this country. God Bless them all.

  21. Anthony Romero says:

    God Bless every one of you, and Thank You for fighting for our Country! We live in the greatest country in the World, and it’s all because of YOU!
    reply from Robert: Thanks for the comment. It is appreciated more than any of us can know. I also posted a new post about Veterans day with a great tribute to the American soldier on it. Thanks for the comment.

  22. Bob fielder says:

    I believe I was there on the 8th of Nov. 1965, at sea on the USS Hornet. This song that Big and Rich have done leaves me with tears for the men that we lost. What else can I say but thanks to all that did not come home.
    reply from Robert: Amen to that. This is one battle that shows the greatness of the American spirit. Overwhelmed by numbers, these men fought with a ferocity that makes one think of super human strength. These men deserve all the glory and praise that can be brought out of us for them and their sacrifice.

  23. Stefanie says:

    I was the wife of a soldier during the Vietnam War and, thankfully, my husband (“feets don’t fail me now” 11 Bravo) was never sent to Vietnam but I worked on the Army post then called Hunter Liggett Military Reservation, now Fort Hunter Liggett, in central California. I met many young men just back from the war and saw first hand how it affected them. I will never forget Paddy, John, Chris and the others I worked with in the computer software division and computer room. These young (were they still young?) men adopted me as a little sister and were older brother protective of me, the only female on the site for 4 years. I thank God you were some of the ones who made it home and I will NEVER forget the sacrifice you made to this Country. As a by-note, during World War II I had three uncles from my dad’s side and three from mom’s side who served in places around the world. My heartfelt thanks goes out to them also.
    reply from Robert: God Bless you for supporting your husband, and God Bless him for his service. It didn’t matter where he ended up, whether here, or in another country, he was willing to go wherever they would send him, and he is to be blessed for that sacrifice. And also, God Bless you for yours. Thanks for the great comment.

  24. Don Crowhurst says:

    I served in the 75th ranger regiment in Vietnam, and I am proud of the men who fought alongside me. You may not like the war or believe it has political overtones, but this is about raw courage and heroism. Many brothers died defending freedom so that you can enjoy the liberties you have today. If you don’t like it, then get the hell out! There are 58,138 names , names of men and women on the Vietnam wall in Washington. All who paid the ultimate sacrifice – honor them with the respect they deserve!
    reply from Robert: I hope you weren’t talking to me when you said that I may not like it…..I support the troops in any battle that they are in or were in. And God Bless you for your service sir. The men who fought in Vietnam hold a special place in my heart because I tried to go myself, though because of a nervous disorder that I have I was not allowed to go, though my best friend ended up joining, but he never got to Nam. So again, God Bless you for your service.

  25. Rick says:

    Rest easy Uncle Herman and the rest of the men who gave all that day 46 years ago. We will never, ever forget…..
    reply from Robert: You are so right. True Americans who love this country will never forget. God Bless all who were there.

  26. Don Crowhurst says:

    No sir, my comment was not directed at you – but the bleeding heart liberals who did not fight or go to Vietnam who feel they can comment on the men and women who died there. I personally hate anyone who degrades, mocks or ridicules what we went thru. I do not like war, but did what my country asked me to do! Remember the sacrifice these men made, fighting for what they believe. Freedom is not free, and the price is very high. How many would lay down their lives, for their fellow man? I have seen what the price is, and i will never forget! Mad, hell yes I am mad – this is about sacrifice, dedication and honor. Do not disgrace the many fallen!
    reply from Robert: Absolutely right sir. And I honor all the military as often as I can. Even when I am not directly honoring them, I am by trying to get the truth out on the liberal left and the lies they tell to the people and the disrespect they all show for the military and our allies. I didn’t really think you were speaking to me on that, just had to make sure. *ss* Again, God Bless you for your service. It is always appreciated for the sacrifices you and the military made and still make for the American people, our country and the freedoms we love. Thanks for the return reply.

  27. Cathy says:

    Have a question does anyone remember a Ray Tarnecki on the 8th of Nov?
    reply from Robert: I wasn’t there Cathy, but I will leave this one open for more comments. Maybe someone who reads this blog will know. I will keep my fingers crossed for you.

  28. JHB says:

    I enlisted in December 1966 and arrived at Fort Bragg NC in January 1967. Thankfully I never went to Viet Nam. Now here I am at age 64 with two grown children and 3 grandchildren. I wonder would they have ever been born if I had been shipped over seas. In some ways I’m lucky I didn’t get there but I’ll always have an empty feeling deep inside that I should have been. I wish I could wear the uniform again. I was 19 and lucky…or was I…and then I think of my kids and grandkids. Forty five years later and I’m still haunted and still wondering. I should have been there…
    reply from Robert: You are about 5 years older than I am as next year I turn 60. First off, even though you never got to vietnam, I thank you for your service. You did your part by enlisting. And Americans everywhere thank you for your part. I know what you mean by wondering. I tried to go, but wasn’t allowed too. I still wonder where I would have ended up if I had been accepted.

  29. Rebekah says:

    I know of some brave people who have served and are still serving our wonderful country and I thank them and all I meet every chance I get. It takes a brave soul to go out there and defend people you may or may not know. I have heard the song by Big and Rich a thousand times though I never knew the meaning of the 8th of November until tonight. Thanks to this post I now know the meaning and I plan on celebrating this day for proud souls that went out there to protect our country. I also plan on getting my community involved in remembering these brave soldiers.
    reply from Robert: Thank you Rebekah. You are what this country stands for. People who do what they can as they live their lives to live the American dream and also to thank the ones who made this great country possible. Sadly, we have elected so many to high office now that do not believe this way. God Bless you and your efforts. Glad I could help show you what the song meant. It moved me a lot when I found out. I almost ended up in that war. I have nothing but respect and love for every man and woman who fought in that war. They not only fought the war bravely, but had to come home and fight the idiots who called them baby killers and spit on them. They deserved so much better. Thank you for the kind words to me and my blog, and to all the veterans everywhere.

  30. kevin fish says:

    I really enjoyed reading these blogs god bless everyone who has and still does serve our country this really touched me.
    reply from Robert: Thank you. This has been my most hit on posts since I did it over a year ago now. It has given me a lot of insight into what those men went through. Thank you for the comment. I hope you come back.

  31. MarthaMerle Hackworth says:

    I am a history teacher in Virginia and I use Big and Rich’s song 8th of November to teach about Vietnam to my class. Thanks for the information about that important battle. I will now add this to my class. Thanks to all Veterans for your service.
    reply from Robert: I am honored. Thank you.

  32. logan says:

    Thank you to all soldiers who served in our armed services. I am currently 18 and I will be going to basic when I’m 19 so I hope I can help my future comrades.
    reply from Robert: First off sir, Thank you for your service. Americans everywhere thank you for your sacrifices that you will be giving. And I am sure that you will help where ever you are sent. God Bless you.

  33. Courtney M CHambers says:

    i listen to 8th of November by Big and Rich all the time because it is my favorite song, but before today I never watched the video of the song. Then I looked up 8th of November online and and read what had happened on that day and I just want to say to all the men that fought for our country, I thank you so much and to all the family’s that lost their loved one to not to be sad that their sons passed away but to be proud of them for going to war to save people that they did not know. Again thank you so much to all those men. And God bless from Courtney M Chambers.
    reply from Robert: Thank you so much for the comment. Thanks for reading.

  34. Dan says:

    So proud and thankful for all who served, and also to those who made the ultimate sacrifice. I have recently joined the Army and I leave for BCT June 5th, though I didn’t get infantry (the MOS that I wanted) because all those idiots in congress find it necessary to cut military jobs instead of cutting their own retarded govt spending, I intend on getting infantry when I reenlist in three years and serve my country to the best of my ability. Again God bless all of you who have defended and continue to defend our nation, I’ll be standing right beside you all very soon!
    reply from Robert: This is a great comment. Thank you for it, and God Bless you for your intended service, and know that the right in this country and the ones that love our service men and women will always support you. God Bless you.

  35. corey hepler says:

    I had an uncle who served in Vietnam, and just withing the last 2 months has finally started talking to me about it. I myself would love to serve in the military but due to medical reasons I can’t. But I always show my respect to military men and women by shaking their hand and teling them thank u for giving me the freedom to live in a country like the USA. I live my life by military standards. God bless all u men and women who have served this country with honor and pride.
    <reply from Robert: I couldn’t have said it better myself. Thanks for your commitment to America my friend….and thanks for reading. Hope you return.

  36. Tony Caruso says:

    I served state side in 1965 at Fort Gordon Georgia. I had orders to go to Nam but they were rescinded at the last minute and I stayed in Fort Gordon to teach teletype communications. I know for a fact that at least 26 of the GI’s I taught gave their lives in Vietnam. When I summoned up enough courage to finally visit the Vietnam Memorial in DC I found each one of them and stood teary eyed and saluted each. I never in my life had a more memorable moment than that one.

    When I got home from the service I searched out a young man from my neighborhood that had been part of the 7th Cavalry action depicted in the Mel Gibson movie “We Were Soldiers.” I looked the fellow up and we were best of friends until his death last year from complications that happened because of wounds he suffered that day. Every one who wasn’t there, but still feels a certain emotional attachment to the war as I do should do themselves a favor and view this movie. My friend Tom said the bravery displayed in this film was as close to the real thing as you could get. To each and every one of you who has served our country I say God Bless You and Thanks for your service. Although I was not a Marine I always appreciated their salute to one another, so I’ll close by saying Semper Fi.
    reply from Robert: Even though you didn’t get to go to Vietnam, God Bless you for the service that you gave. You helped many who did go, and gave them the knowledge to get back as I know a lot did. I didn’t get to go myself as I had a nervous disorder that prevented me from being accepted to go. My best friend though got to join, though he ended up in Germany, not Vietnam. I pray for the safety of each and every one of you who served this great country.

  37. Tammy Fort says:

    I would like to say to all that served from the past to the present, many many thanks from the bottom of my heart. My daddy was in WW II, but I was very young when he past away, so I didn’t get to hear any of his storys. I can’t put into words how I feel when it comes to what yall do for not just for this country but for my family and I. My prayers go out to all of you and your families, I know that yall give alot for us. I was a baby when Vietnam was going on, but heart hurt more for you guys because of the home coming that yall got, which makes my blood boil. I love everyone of you. I had family members that went and thank God they got to come home. But so many did not. May God keep all of yall safe. GOD BLESS EVERYONE THAT FIGHTS FOR MY FREEDOM.
    reply from Robert: Very eloquently put Tammy. I am sure that the veteran’s who read here appreciate your sentiment. Thank you for such a nice heart felt comment.

  38. Brian Forrester says:

    I am a Navy veteran and lost my cousin John Odle Feb 1969 killed by small arms action in Quang Nam Viet Nam. God bless those who have served and will serve. America is the greatest country in the world and for those who have protested in any way are not true Americans. I am in my 50’s now and would serve my country any time she asks me. This memorial day I ask that everyone please take a moment out of their lives to take a moment of silence to remember those who have served and gave all so that Our country may be free.
    reply from Robert: Well put and God Bless your cousin John for serving. Like I have said many times, I never served. I wanted to and I tried to go, but the military wouldn’t take me. But I am a staunch advocate for the military and revere all who serve. I like you do not like the ones that protest, as they are living in the only country in the world that allows them to do that without reprecussions to their actions, unless they break the law. They have no idea what a great country they live in, or the amount of sacrifice that has been given to keep it that way. Sadly, many who serve in our own government do not realize this either. Thank you for your great comment, and God bless you.

  39. Cindy says:

    My son, my only living child is in the Marines. He just left yesterday to go back to base and then another deployment after an 18 day leave. As always, I cried my eyes out when he had to leave. He just got to meet his 7 1/2 month old son the day before Mother’s Day. He turned to me and said ‘Mom,now I understand why you got me from school and wouldn’t let me go on Sept.11. I never knew I could love so much!” That is what loving your family and country is all about!!! I now know I made a difference in his life that he will pass on to his son AND his country. What more could a mother want? I am so very proud of my son and all the young men and women that choose to fight for our country!!!!
    reply from Robert: So eloquently put ma’am. Thank you for writing this. I hope that everyone who reads this post, also reads your comment. You have put it better that I could have. Thank you.

  40. lost says:

    Duck stills drinks a tall one! and try’s to skip the 2 days once in fucked dreams! god bless and save my 173rd Sky Soldiers! Dutch we will not forget!
    reply from Robert: God Bless you all for your service. America would not be the great nation she is, without great sacrifices like you men and women gave. God Bless you all.

  41. Proud says:

    Bien Hoa ,,, The IT and Cu Chi was out of my head!!!! Thank God !!! Miss ya’ll Live strong!!
    What’s sad is that our Zealand buds lost about all! that ain’t in the book!!! Bless our brothers in the 173rd BCT! My Grandson fights now, 3rd Brigade Combat Team of the 10th Mountain Division, He is 173rd! Fly on!
    reply from Robert: God Bless you, and Your son for your service. America will always be indebted to you.

  42. Sad says:

    Climb to glory my friends!
    reply from Robert: God Bless you for your service too. Your climb to glory happened when you fought. We Americans can never repay you for your GLORY that you fought and some of you died for. Thank you all for your sacrifices.

  43. Philip says:

    As the grandson of a Korean veteran myself, I know firsthand what war does to a person. To all of those who fought during Operation Hump, Thank You for your service. Without you, America would not be the free country it is today. Again, Thank You to all those who fought in Operation Hump on the 8th of November, 1965.
    reply from Robert: I am sure that the ones that remain appreciate that from you sir. Thank you.

  44. Rose Guerin says:

    Thanks to each of the brave men and women who serve our country. My brother Bob Guerin, from Parma, OH was killed May 16, 1966. If you knew him, please send me a “hello”. Thanks. rcrbrown1@gmail.com
    reply from Robert: Sorry I didn’t get to go to Vietnam but have the greatest love and respect for those who fought and did what they could to keep America safe, and help others to know the freedoms we enjoy. God Bless them all

  45. Mike DeFrancesco, B/1/503, 1965-1966 says:

    Hello everyone and thank you for all the good thoughts that have preceded this comment. I don’t spend a lot of time discussing my Hill 65 combat experiences in the 173d Airborne Brigade because most people don’t (or won’t) understand. Today is November 6, 2012, and I have severe and regular PTSD flashbacks of the events and the men I served with. My name is Mike DeFrancesco and I was there on 8 November 1965 on Hill 65 and served as an infantry platoon leader in B Company, 1/503. Dutch Holland’s (also B/1/503) comments encouraged me to make this response. Thank you Dutch, and thank you Big and Rich for memorializing this battle for us. I don’t remember a lot of the names of men who survived Hill 65, but the 173d has annual reunions around the country where you might be able to make contacts with others who might know others, etc., … In addition to Dutch, other survivor names from Co. B that I know are Harold Dale, Al Eyster, Doc Marrinan, Ross Redding, and Howie Lund. They in turn may remember those who were KIA.
    reply from Robert: God bless you sir for your service. Thank you for the invaluable service and sacrifice you and others gave for us all, to keep us free. Sadly we are under attack from the top of our own government and the people who vote them into office. Yesterday was the worst example of this. We are forever indebted to your service for this country and may God bless us all to keep this republic so many have fought and died for.

  46. Rick says:

    @ Mike Defrancesco, Thank you for your service , Sir!…..I often wondered what happened that day, but in a way I don’t want to know. I come to this site to make comments on the Anniversary of this battle, to keep the memories of lost loved ones and those who fought on 8 Nov 1965 alive… Rest assured no of you will ever be forgotten.

    Nephew of PFC Herman Brown
    reply from Robert: Thank you for your comment sir, and we are all indebted to your uncle for his service….and to you too if you served or fought.

  47. PatrickM. O says:

    Forty seven years later and I still take the time on this date to remember and say thank you to my friends who made it possible for me to be here today. We all came home. One way or another, we all came home. Thank you guys. Tears and goose bumps are no stranger to me when I think of all of you and what you did. I proudly wear the insignia pin of the 173rd “Sky Soldiers”. If anyone notices those tears, goose bumps or pin, I will proudly tell them why.

    Patrick (Irish) O’Leary, RTO, B 1/503
    reply from Robert: Again, I tell you all….God Bless you all for your brave service. We are in debt to you all.

  48. Marie says:

    For all of our brave service men and women, THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE!!!!!!!May the ones that died live a happy life in heaven, they more than deserved it!
    reply from Robert: That they do Marie. That they do. And they are probably sitting in great stead with God for their sacrifice.

  49. My name is Paul Rutowski. My uncle (Dad’s brother) was Dennis David Rutowski. He died at Operation Hump and was a paratrooper. Every year on the 8th of November, I read the lyrics by Big and Rich. I want to thank all of you who were part of this and bringing us pride for what sacrifices they have made to protect our liberty. prutowski@me.com
    reply from Robert: For my part of posting this post, You are welcome. And Your uncle is revered for his service to this country. We will always remember.

  50. Patrick (Irish) O'Leary says:

    Patrick M. O’Leary, RTO, B 1/503, Viet Nam 1965 to 1966. I still see more faces than names I can remember. Deeds are unforgotten…sacrifices remembered. Because of so many, I’m here to be able to say thank you. A moment in time and a lifetime of memories. Airborne. All the Way. Jumping out of airplanes was fun. Being with men who did was incredible.
    reply from Robert: I can’t say this enough. God bless the men who fought this battle…every one.

  51. Patrick (Irish) O'Leary says:

    To Trish Shamblin Pierce:
    Although I didn’t know your father first hand, some of my best friends were in the same platoon with Theo. Your father always had a smile on his face and had friendly nod when we passed or bumped into each other in camp or at the EM club.He was a good squad leader and well liked by his team. I hope that others who were close to him can reach out to you. I do have group photos (platoon and company) that show that Shamblin smile. You are welcome to copies if you wish.

    The best to Trish.
    Patrick

  52. Diana Goodavage says:

    The other day I had the privilege of meeting a man who had been in this battle. He said he was one of the eight U.S. survivors.
    reply from Robert: I hope that you thanked him for his service to our country.

  53. james says:

    this is just a great thing to do
    reply from Robert: Exactly

  54. Ronald Venable says:

    Hi Dutch my name is Ron Venable, I was there that morning. I was assigned to Charlie Company Co. 1 Bn. I am now retired after 25 years of service. There’s not many of us skysoldiers left that was involved in operation hump. I just wanted to send a shout out to you. God bless you.
    reply from Robert: I am so very amazed that this post has touched so many people I have had so many comments on this from those who were there that day….and to me, there is nothing short of Amazement in my soul for your bravery and loyalty to our nation. God bless you all for the sacrifices that you all gave.

  55. Rick says:

    To all the men that Bravely served that day 8th November 1965. Thank you so much for your service. I hope i am not asking to much, But please, if you have any picture that you are willing to share. can you forward them to me as I am starting a site dedicated to the men that served and were lost on this day. My E-mail address is rlgilbert64@ayhoo.com. I will be forever indebted to you for doing so……Always remembered 173rd Family….Thank you, Rick.G…Nephew of PFC Herman Brown 7-16-1947 – 11-8-1965…. KIA Hill 65… God bless you all.
    reply from Robert: When you get your site up and going sir, please give us a heads up on where it is and the url so I can post it here too. That is going to be a great site in tribute to a great bunch of men. Thank you for your efforts.

  56. Rick says:

    PS…Robert if you have any tips i would sure appreciate them Thank you!!!
    reply from Robert: I really have no tips except to tell everyone you are doing this. Go to your email and send a message to everyone who you have in your address book. If you can afford it advertise about it on google or other search engines by using a google site or use WordPress to do your site on. You can then go to go-daddy.com which is what I have done, and get a thing there, and then link it to your site here..so you own the domain. I own this domain of Wise Conservatism through both WordPress and go-daddy. And then of course, let me know what your url is going to be so I can push that site here. Good luck and I hope you get lots of pictures.

  57. prutowski says:

    I do have pictures from Dennis Rutowski who was my uncle. I’ll need to find them.

  58. Rick says:

    Thank you so much!!!
    reply from Robert: You are so welcome. I just wish that I could do more.

  59. Alexis Cline says:

    my names is Alexis and im doing a report on this operation for my school research report and i have the song 8th of November and it still makes me cey to this day about the loss of soldiers. if anyone could give me a more detailed description on this operation i would greatly appreciate it. my email is alexisgoodau@yahoo.com

    reply from Robert: I went to not only the video, which tells a little of what happened that day, but I went to google and called up November 8, 1965 – Operation Hump. You will get a wealth of information. Also check out the many comments that I have gotten here, some of which were by family members of people lost there, and from people who were there. There are things that they have said that are invaluable. Good luck on your report.

  60. scott says:

    thank you for fighting for my fredom in this country.
    reply from Robert: I hope you meant that for the men of this post. If you did, I second that one.

  61. Lowell D. Bittrich says:

    Recently I received another book telling the story about our fight on Hill 65. The book was written by Warren Wlilkins and is entitled “Grab Their Belts To Fight Them” and it was published in 2011. One of the points I learned in this book is that the battle is referred to by the enemy as “the battle of Dat Cuoc.” I have read many an account of the battle on the net. Many of those accounts are riddled with inaccuracies. For example the Wikapedia account is by far one of the worst. As some of you are aware, I wrote an account of the battle in a rather lengthy paper. It was never intended for the paper to be published. But after a lot of pressure I did give a copy to a select number of people for the purpose of their review and in the hope they might correct any inaccuracies and might add anything they thought relevant. Shortly thereafter I found the entire paper published on the net and gave up any attempt to protect it. Some of you asked why I didn’t want it published. I clearly stated why in my introduction to the paper. I gave three reasons why and they are as true now as they were then. I am told the Army historian has a copy which was provided by General Williamson. I started to write this to talk a bit about B Company and my pride in all it accomplished but this is getting a bit long. Have a great New Year. Lowell D. Bittrich
    reply from Robert: Thanks for this comment sir. I am glad you posted this.

  62. michael says:

    Did you know a Larry Chaffin he was there. He was my grandfather.
    reply from Robert: I did not know him sir, but God Bless him for his service. Americans everywhere are in awe of their service to this country. Thanks for the comment on your grandfather, and hopefully you can find out something about him and his service to our country.

  63. Ron says:

    To all my Sky Soldier brothers out there, Welcome Home. I was Recon Platoon, 1/503 through Dak To. I remember D Zone very well. What I remember most about Nam was the bravery of my brothers. God bless you all.
    reply from Robert: Thank you sir for reading my blog, and God Bless you for your service in Vietnam.

  64. Summer House says:

    Every time I hear this song I cry. I didn’t have family who fought in this particular battle but I did have family who fought in the war. I have two younger brothers who are serving in the Navy branch of the military now, and every time they leave I’m terrified that I won’t see them again. But I am so proud of what are doing and what those who have come before them have done. Our freedoms are most certainly not free. There are men and women who give their lives for our freedoms and for that I will always be thankful. And while I might not always agree with why we are at war I will always support our troops and pray for them and thier loved ones. God Bless all of you who served and are serving. And God Bless all of you who have lost a loved one in service. My family appreciates the sacrifices you make for us and our country.
    reply from Robert: I am sure that those who fought in Vietnam appreciate your sentiment. I feel the same way. These men deserve our gratitude. For without those who will fight for our freedoms, they will be long lost. But, right now the battle for our freedoms is coming from a war being fought against us from obama and the liberal left. It is our duty to do what the soldiers did during Vietnam and other wars. It is time for us to fight back.

  65. Mike says:

    Anyone who served in Nam has dealt with many hardships just put them behind you do not let the drag you down you guys did an awesome job and had many hardships. When I go to my local legion I sit and talk to them and of course buy them all the beers they want. Thats the least I can do. USMC.
    reply from Robert: I am sure they appreciate it. They deserve the attention for what they did ….. war is not a pretty thing and the heroism that happens in wartime can boggle the mind.

  66. Angel says:

    My Papa served in army for 32 years and he has agent orange he is 69 years old. He has a for-weeler that he rides on, cause he can’t walk and he let’s me drive it and it is a standard. He says that I can drive it as good as he can I love him so much, and my great grandpa was suppose to be in pearl harbor, but he had to do something for a friend and he lived to be 92 and little over 2 months.
    reply from Robert: Sounds like your papa and your gread Grandpa were great American’s and you should be very proud of them. God Bless them for their service.

  67. Jim says:

    Today, my family and I will pay our respects and offer prayers to the men and women who served in Vietnam by viewing the Vietnam Traveling Wall in New Philadelphia, Ohio. May God bless the soldiers, and their families, who gave their lives to protect us. You will never be forgotten. Thank you.
    reply from Robert: Sounds like something that would be appreciated. Thank you.

  68. Meagan Biddle says:

    i joined ROTC when i was in high school and planned on joining the military when i graduated. due to me dropping out i was unable. but now its been five years and im a proud supporter to our troops. i cant do a lot but i do remember the stories that my teacher, 1st seargant steven ford, told us. I do wish i could hear the mens stories that survived. right now i am a soon to be military wife to a man in the air force with our first child due any day. What im trying to say is even though i do miss him im proud of him. im proud of my friends and family who have decided to serve our country. im extra proud of the retired soilders who servedin veitnam. God Bless you all.
    reply from Robert: There are more out here who are proud of those retired soldiers from Vietnam than most would think. Thanks for the great comment.

  69. n/a says:

    God bless americia and all its people

  70. Kevin says:

    I share my birthday with these brave men who fought that day and every year instead of celebrating I spend the day reading and do research on those who fought for the 173rd. Truly all are American heroes that i owe my freedom to.
    reply from Robert: You are right. They sure are heroes.

  71. Roy Smith says:

    First Thank You for your service. As the son of a WWII 112th Cav. an 3 uncles who also, My name sake was KIA on CV-6 Enterprise in the last big battle it was in in march 1945. We own engraving shop an a long time customer ask me to do a plaque he could take to the wall on Vets Day. I didn’t know till he was there 8 Nov. We live 15 mi. apart an would have served togther back then. I was turned down due to health reasons. Tryed to join the USAF, but no go either. My cousin was there during Tet 68 an Brother in Law flew Cobra 72-73. All those yrs going by by not know the full story of 8 Nov. till Joe ask for this plaque I’m working on. We both shead tears as he told me some of what happened.
    God Bless You an all the vetrans who saved our way of life an the one serving today.
    Roy Smith
    PS: I worked at lockheed during that time working on C-141.
    PPS: I’m helping the Amer. Legion to bring the wall here Memorial Day 2014.
    reply from Robert: God Bless you for all you do and for your service sir.

  72. PFC William (Bill) Henry says:

    Here we go – 48 years later !! I was the M-60 gunner in Weapons Squad, 1st Platoon, C Company, 1st of the 503rd on that day. Larry Joel was our platoon medic (and a great guy) – Niles Harris was one of my ammo bearers.
    We were 64 troopers that were sent out 200 clicks on a probe patrol to our front that morning when we walked into that ambush just as we crested the top of Hill 65. Most were cut down on the initial bursts of fire – those not killed were fatally wounded. Their machine guns were trained to about 10 inches from the ground – if you went down – you were dead. About 18 of us (some wounded) crawled into what you would call a defensive perimeter and for the next 4 hours defended our position. They probed that hill several times and were warded off each time by those of us that remained. Larry Joel was crawling around patching up the wounded and had already be hit in the leg once. He was treating a trooper with a sucking chest wound and called to me for something to cover the wound – I gave him the plastic that my wallet was wrapped in and it worked. He was hit in the other leg 2 more times while holding up an IV bag – then crawled off to attend others with me giving him covering fire. I never thought we would get off that hill !!

  73. Ronald M. Venable says:

    I was there that morning. I also was in Charlie Company, 1st. Bn., 503rd Infantry. I was a grenadier in the 1st Plt., 2nd second squad. The evening prior to that action, my squad was on patrol in the area where we were hit. I can remember hearing domestic animals in that area. If we had went a little further up the hill, I probably wouldn’t be here to talk about it today.

    It’s hard to forget that morning about 45 years ago. The battle plays over and over in my head. Some time I ask myself, why did we do what we did? And I answer myself, because we are Americans, and we were protecting our way of life. Every veteran should be proud of themselves. And for those that could not serve for whatever reason there may be, Remember that freedom isn’t free. A lot of good men didn’t make it off the hill that day. God bless all of you, and God bless America.

  74. Thank you all of the soldiers who fought and are fighting

  75. Al Conetto says:

    I am completing my manuscript on Operation Hump. I have a publisher interested. He would like to see more first hand accounts in the book. I have some, but need more. If you were there and wish to contribute please contact me at my e-mail address.

    fyi: I was 3rd platoon leader, A Company, 1/503 and was there.

  76. Al Conetto says:

    ooooops, for got to add my address…….it is aconetto@charter.net

  77. Terry Lease says:

    I had to opportunity to meet Joel and another wounded Hump soldier. The soldier, Albert Ramosa (sp) and Joel set a discussed a lot that day. I know that Joel has since passed away however, never been able to find the other individual. I kind of thought they were both in the same company at the time of the battle. Joel’s pictures and stories of the presentation of his MOHA, and family conversations with White House officials were very interesting.
    reply from Robert: Much about what happened that day, and the men who fought it are interesting…and something that cannot be forgotten.

  78. PFC YANCEY says:

    TO THOSE BRAVE MEN WHO WERE THERE ON OPERATION HUMP WARZONE D NOVEMBER 8 1965 ITS BECAUSE OF YOUR BRAVE SACRFICES AND MANY OTHERS I WANT TO THANK YOU BECAUSE ITS STORIES LIKE THIS ONE THAT HELPED ME MAKE A LIFE CHANGING DECISION WHEN I WAS 13 TWO YEARS AGO I JOINED THE UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS TO SERVE MY COUNTRY THAT I LOVE SO MUCH IF IT WASNT FOR STORIES LIKE THIS ONE I STILL WOULDNT KNOW WHAT TO DO I SALUTE YOU BRAVE MEN FOR YOUR SACRIFICES I JUST ANT TO SAY THANK YOU FOR RISKING YOUR LIFE FOR MY FREEDOM AS WELL AS MY FAMILIES.
    SEMPER FIDELIS,
    PFC YANCEY USMC
    reply from Robert: God bless you for your service and desire to give service to this great country. It is people like you that help keep America free, even with the government we have taking our freedoms away.

  79. Dan Simons says:

    I was there on Nov 8th, and I want to thank two men that sacrificed their lives for me and the others that were there. I HONOR DENNIS RUTOWSKI, Dennis I miss you. LAWRENCE JOEL, thank you for being the medic who patched me up. I know that you have passed now, but, thank you. I hope that what I did with my life was worth your sacrifice.
    Dan Simons
    C Company, 1/503 173Abn Brigade.
    reply from Robert: God Bless you for your Service Sir

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