Reply with quote #1
Hello Richard, I hope that as you are reading this you are feeling good and in the best of health; and as for me me I am doing fine but only still during this time of the year after 49 years after the battle of Bandit Hill this month of October it still dwells in my mind exactly what the recommendation citation would have read that you recomended me for the Silver Star Medal. I watched about a month ago when President Donald Trump awarded the Medal Of Honor to a Medic for his heroic actions in 1969 in Vietnam, and I thought to myself again exactly what significant act I did during the early dark morning while Bandit Hill the NDP was being attacked while the company- minus was out on a ambush patrol operation. I was really surprised after reporting back to you at your Track in our sector on the NDP that you told me that I had done a "Damn Good Job" and that you were recommending me and my driver Ken for the Silver Star Medal in which you did. I wrote home telling my parents that I had earned the Silver Star Medal, and my Mother wrote back to me that my Father was telling/bragging to his friends and to those people where we did shop that I earned the Silver Star Medal in Vietnam. When I went back to the rear in Lai Khe to go on my second R&R to Bangkok at the end of October, the guys back in the rear also congratulated me for being recommended for the Silver Star Medal; the Rear Detachment NCOIC of our company constantly asked me during breakfast about being recommended for the Silver Star Medal being that I did not get wounded during the battle....I told him that I had killed two wounded VC with a hand grenade that laid moaning and groaning about 30 meters in front of my track in the position that I took that night in the 1st Platoon sector after I entered the NDP until the rest of the company got there(Only Ken my driver, B16 and my friend from Brooklyn,NYC witnessed...I even had not mentioned that to you. Before I reported back to our sector that morning I swept the perimeter in front of my Track and that the hand grenade that I had thrown had blown the heads of the two VC off). I asked the company clerk about the Silver Star award and he said that it was at battalion. While at Camp Alpha awaitng to go to Bangkok I met some guys from the company there and they also congratulated me for being recommendated for the Silver Star Medal. I got back to Bandit Hill during the second week of November to only find out that I was the only oldtimer from the Platoon that was still in the field and approached you with the situation. You told me that you were going back to Lai Khe that Friday to be reassigned to the 4.2 Mortar Platoon and would take me with you and for now I did not have to leave the NDP but to only teach the new guys how to use the 50 Caliber Machine Gun. Friday came but you did leave Bandit Hill, but had made sure that I was on the list to catch the resupply bird back to Lai Khe. The night before I left Bandill Hill my Track hit a land mine, no one was killed but Big Man and my driver Ken was shook up pretty well.The last time that I saw you and the rest of the guys from 3rd Platoon I was at the CP as you marched by on foot going out on a patrol. When I got back to Lai Khe I was greeted by Johnson, Larson, Tatri from our Platoon and the company Rear Detachment NCOIC. The company Rear Detachment immediately put me on a Sh-t Burning detail....then when that detail was finished he handed me my promotion orders to Sergeant E-5...they all laughed. My first official duty as a Sergeant was to be Sergeant of the perimeter of Lai Khe ttwo days later at night.The company made it back to Lai Khe for Thanksgiving Day. I spent that time with Robinson, Booker, Wells and Big Man Finally I went to battalion HQ's to out process. I went to the awards section to get my awards. I received all my awards except for the Silver Star. I asked the awards clerk what happened to my Silver Star Medal, he replied that he had not received the request...I then approached the company clerk and he said that he had given the recommnedation to the S-1. I left the Battalion HQ!s really upset and went back to the company area. I met Captain Hansen coming out of the shower and explained to him what had happened. He said that he had approved the recommendation of the Silver Star Medal and that I would get it. I told Captain Hansen that I was derosing, he said that you had been reassigned to the 4.2 Mortar Platoon and that he would get you resubmit the Silver Star Medal recommendation. After finally corresponding to you again through my Brother, in a Xmas card that you sent to me about four years ago you said that you did resumit the Silver Star Medal recommendation while you were at Thunder 4 in December 1968. I know that I will never receive the Silver Star Medal, but I would really like to know what you wrote in the citiation so I can close this part of Vietnam from my life. I think that I deserve to know that....Noli Me Tangere.
Curtis Parker B 2/2 Infantry, 3rd Platoon, Track B231 9 Dec 1967-10 Dec 1968
Reply with quote #2
Curtis all is well with me. I do not remember exactly what the citation said but was to the effect you and your driver volunteered to go down a road that was heavily mined and under enemy fire to aid the remainder of company which was under attack in a night defensive position. I am hopeful this answers some of the mysteries of your Silver Star citation recommendation. I am saddened you never received it. I have PTSD and somethings are now just coming to my memory. In 1914 i got Auto Immune Lymphobic anemia, Something was attacking my red blood cells and my hemoglobin had fallen to 5.2 and was close to death. My organs were close to shutting down. They removed my spleen, now this are doing fine. One thing that gave they problems was they could not match my blood because i had too many antibodies. I got 7 units of blood in 15 days. All better now. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
Reply with quote #3
Happy New Year Richard, I hope that you had a very special Merry Xmas and I pray that you continue to have good health and peace of mind just like you have finally given me after all these many years. Now I can rest in peace knowing exactly why you recommend me and my Driver Ken for the Silver Star Medal....I only knew about the road back to Bandit Hill was always heavily mined, but later since Last year You and John Kerins reported that the NVA/VC was Waiting to ambush the company when we'd come down the road which I was not aware of, but I still would have done that anyway. It was a pleasure and Honor having You ad my Platoon Leader.....Take Care of yourself Daring Bravo Bandit 36 from Daring Bravo Bandit 31.....Noli Me Tangere.