Duty

Discussion in 'Day Trippin'' started by mikegc, Jul 29, 2011.

  1. blacktruck

    blacktruck Been here awhile

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    Thanks Mike for a great report. I have to admit that reading this was way more than just another RR. I've read many of the stories from far off lands and this is one that covered many roads that I have driven over myself many times and it has brought out far more emotions than I would freely admit to. I retired from the Army after 22 years and change. Didn't make VN but had many friends that did. I made Iraq early on. To those that have never served, you might not understand some of the feelings and emotions that goes along with reading this story. If you served you probably know.
    I'm with everybody else that has posted here. Thiis is a rare and valuable RR and it says a lot for the true character of the author and subjects of the RR.
    Ride on and stay safe there soldier.
  2. mikegc

    mikegc Long timer

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    Thank you, Robert. I hope the memories my report brought are good ones. Welcome home, bud!

    Mike
  3. Bob

    Bob Formerly H20Pumper

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    Thanks for this thread and a reminder of all who served to make this a great nation.
    Thank You for your service.

    5/59 ADA 72-74
  4. Happy Seal

    Happy Seal Long timer

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    Good post and way to go, your a great guy and thanks for throwing this link over at 1911 Addicts. :clap
  5. jmcg

    jmcg Turpinated..

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    Enjoyed reading about your journey.

    Great photography.

    Thank you.

    JM.
  6. ricochetrider

    ricochetrider a certain something

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    I grew up in my Dad's Own Army. A lifetime with the man, and never, I repeat -NEVER- heard any stories from WWII, Korea, or Viet Nam, and yes he fought in all three conflicts. To see your photos, and feel the emotion with which you entered these words and pix... Well, let's just say there's FAR more than just what's on the screen before my eyes.

    I swear, at one time my dad had a presentation pistol, in a case, a chromed .45- pretty much exactly like the one you took to your friend...
    (minus the ivory grips)
    It was gone from the house, never found it when we cleared the house after my folks had died.

    Thanx for the report, and for your service.
  7. mikegc

    mikegc Long timer

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    Thank you, gentlemen.

    Ricochetrider, your dad was a member of the Greatest Generation, using Tom Brokaw's excellent moniker. They left home, did their duty, returned and quietly went on with their lives. When I returned from RVN in '70, my dad took me to a local restaurant where be bumped into a friend of his. Like your father, his friend was a three-war veteran. Dad explained that I had just returned and inquired which war, in his experience, had been the toughest. To dad's (and my) surprise, the veteran said, "Vietnam."

    On the way home that day, dad (a WWII South Pacific medic) said, "If you ever want to talk about it, I'll listen." I waited eighteen years and I'm very glad he was there. These days, the old medic and I go to the VA clinic together. Dementia has robbed his short term memory but I'm glad I get to hear about the Battle for Luzon on some of those drives. What a privilege!!

    Mike
  8. CaspianTiger

    CaspianTiger Adventurer

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    Mike,
    Thanks for the great report. I served in the Army Reserve during that time and worked at the Oakland Army Base Reception Station, where returnees got processed back to the world. I cooked steaks and fries for the guys as their first meal back in the states. Maybe I cooked one for you.
    I am glad the world has learned to honor the warriors in spite of the politicians' decisions.

    ER19905610
    Dennis
  9. mikegc

    mikegc Long timer

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    Dang, Dennis, I did get a steak almost as soon as we got to the reception station. We arrived at dinner time and, after that 13 hour flight, the cadre took us to the mess hall. I wolfed that sucker down as I was in a hurry to get back to NC but, I'll tell you this: It was cooked to perfection!

    Yes, Dennis, like you, I'm very glad our citizens recognize returning veterans very favorably these days.

    Mike
  10. Okeedokee

    Okeedokee Cranky Bastard

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    Thanks Mike and all you other vets who have posted here. I am in awe of your sacrifices and humility.
  11. DRZ RIDER

    DRZ RIDER Adventurer

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    Thank you for your service. Thank you for your ride report. God bless you and God bless America!
  12. mikegc

    mikegc Long timer

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    Okeedokee, thanks for reading my old ride report. I noticed your signature line, "If it don't involve dirt, oil or beer, it ain't worth screwin' with" and chuckled. Years ago, I found a few good spots to 'hoist a few' when I traveled to Wando for the Swamp Fox Enduro. Good times!

    Mike
  13. mikegc

    mikegc Long timer

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    My most humble thanks, sir.

    Mike
  14. Okeedokee

    Okeedokee Cranky Bastard

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    Small world! We ride up there two or three times a month. They moved the enduro to a better location a few years ago. I know you have fond memories of that "hard" ground! Ha! You've gotta love sand to ride there!
    Take care.
  15. Fast Ferris

    Fast Ferris Shift Shaper

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    Two years and counting and this thread still has legs - awesome.

    Thank you for your service, sir, and for penning such a powerful ride report. You - and everyone who serves or who has served - have my utmost respect, admiration and thanks.

    My older brother Doug served in and survived Viet Nam, '69-'70 First Air Cav. We've done many things together over the years, except ride together.

    In two weeks we're gonna fix that. He's flying out here from Washington, picking up his new Road King, and he, me and my wife are going to spend some quality time on the Blue Ridge Parkway. I know you can appreciate how special this ride will be.

    Thanks again.

    Best,
    Ferris

    [​IMG]
  16. mikegc

    mikegc Long timer

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    Good morning, Ferris,

    I think you and your brother are going to have a great ride. Not knowing where you live, the BRP should cool down a bit by then. If you're in the Bedford, VA area, you might want to take a detour and visit the D-Day Memorial. Also, down in Maggie Valley, the Wheels Through Time is a great place to spend a few hours. I'm heading there late next week myself.

    So you brother was with The Cav, huh? I was in RVN in '69-'70 myself but south of him. Those airmobile troopers had a tough time up there but they darn sure gave more then they got! Last Sunday, I rode up to Tuggle's Gap where there's a little restaurant at the intersection of VA 8 and the BRP. There was an old guy there wearing a large 1st Cav patch on his leather vest. On my way past him, I noticed a Purple Heart patch and said, "Well, how were things up in An Khe when you were there." He smiled and said, "I wasn't in An Khe very much." I replied, "Yeah, that Purple Heart told me that." He just laughed and asked where I had been. I told him I was with the Big Red One; he laughed again and said, "Y'all had it pretty easy down there, didn't you?" Hey, it's a vet thing. We welcomed each other home.

    Have a great ride, Ferris. Please tell your brother I thank him for his service!

    Mike
  17. Fast Ferris

    Fast Ferris Shift Shaper

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    Hi Mike -

    Done! I sent Doug a link to your thread. He's read it, and is presently waiting for his "approval" from ADV so he can post-up here for the first time.

    I messed up on the dates last night; my bad. He was in Viet Nam in '68-'69, not '69-'70. I'll let him share other details when he's goes live here in a bit.

    My wife and I live next to the Parkway, not far from the state line. This has been home for going on seven years, and we love it here. Perhaps one of these days we'll run into you on the road.

    Thanks again, sir.

    Ferris
  18. singletrackjack

    singletrackjack Adventurer

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    Well Mike as I set here in tears - Thanks for a great rr --- bringing back old memories - and I do mean old memories thinking of those who didn't get back home - the ultimate sacrifices they gave -- friends I grew up with that never came back and some that did didn't last long before alcoholism or some rare form of cancer took them,,, how humbled I am to just be a part of something like "the Big Red One" that most will never experience! -- certainly took me back to a place I never realized I would ever go back to in this lifetime!!
    And the remark about the big red one insignia on the junction city water tower I had totally forgotten about!!
    With hands shaking and a lump in My throat I say Welcome home Mike Welcome home!!!

    P/S Your Dad said it best -- I used to say the experience was worth a million and I wouldn't take a million to go back!!
  19. mikegc

    mikegc Long timer

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    Thank you, Jack, for your thoughtful and heartfelt comments. I apologize for taking this long to reply. Your service to our country gave you, as others in this thread have stated, a sense of honor that is now part of who you are. All who have served and are serving joined the ranks of those who came before and fought hard to give us this wonderful country. I was reminded of that last evening.

    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>
    I got home last night in time to watch the NBC Nightly News and caught a story about a young trooper, Corporal Hargess, who had been wounded in Afghanistan. In his hospital bed, encumbered by breathing tubes, IVs, bandages, etc., he managed to salute as he was being given the Purple Heart.
    [​IMG]
    Frankly, I got this huge lump in my throat but, along with that, I felt the need to thank those who served and are serving. I sent an e-mail to a couple of guys, one I "met" through ADV Rider and with whom I served. "Dillard" responded, "Wow, he saluted. Got tears in my eyes. Of course, it doesn't take much to get me choked up with this sort of thing. I really love these guys. They do a lot of dumb shit and piss me off most of the time, but then you see something like this and I want to give the kid a big hug."
    <o:p></o:p>
    Mike, my former commanding officer replied, "Dillard is one of our real heroes, and I'm glad you are in touch with him. Honestly, I am just as proud to have flown, risked our lives, and, somehow, survived.with you, right there beside us. Just doing your job.
    <o:p></o:p>
    Career soldies both, one active, one retired, share a trait that I find quite remarkable. They're very humble about what they're doing or have done. As has been said, "Where do we get such men."

    <o:p></o:p>
    Our servicemen and women keep us safe. Please don't forget to welcome them home and thank them for their service.

    Mike<o:p></o:p>
  20. CMS

    CMS Been here awhile

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    First of all thank you for your service. No one comes back the same from combat areas, but it sounds like and I hope its so ,that you are finally home. Your story has touched a lot of folks here, I'm happy for you and all on the forum. You are among a lot of friends who will always be here. Terry, [CMS Ret. USAF, first two years US Army]