Over the past years, specifically since 1992 my life has been impacted by many Veterans. Especially the Vietnam Combat Veteran as we have so much in common. True we all had our jobs to do, but there is this connection that we have that at times cannot be put in to words.
I looked for those I served with from day one after I was able to ask about them the moment my eyes opened when I was in the hospital in Vietnam. And again in the hospital in Japan. The search never stopped once I returned to the States. In my quest to find my comrades I had all but given up.
My determination in some cases and my faith and believe that eventually I would reconnect with men I shared the foxholes with and other situations was not a wasted effort. I have met men that may not have been side by side with me in the Vietnam War but I have met men that were there and that's good enough for me.
One of these men is Jerry Elsenheimer. We have not met face to face at the time of this writing but I feel like I know him personally. He first contacted me thinking I was in his platoon. In a short time we learned that we were not in the same platoon but that we were in the same company at the same time, Alpha Company, 1/27, 25th Division.
Jerry was assigned to the 3rd Platoon from approximately October 1966 to April 1967, then the Weapons Platoon (4th) from April 1967 to August 1967, then Company Exectutive Officer until rotation. I of course was in the 2nd Platoon. Like another Wolffhound I have come to know recently, Tom Demunnick (2nd Platoon) we knew some of the same people. Jerry has been very instrumental in filling in a couple pieces of the puzzle for me.
One piece of the puzzle that holds true for each of us is the attaching names to faces and vice versa. I saw a video that Jerry sent me while visiting another, Mike Moschkin who was in the 2nd Platoon at the same time but who rotated in between. I saw the last face of one of my friends and buddies in Nam, John Riley. Tom also knew Riley and had pictures of him. Then there is someone I have been looking for using every vehicle I can think of, SSG Kenneth Black, 2nd Platoon Leader.
Both men also knew men that my good friend Mike Moschkin knew. We were on ouf feets watching this video when we saw how they sprayed. We found ourselves pointing at faces that we may or may not have known.
Jerry is one of those who walked away from Operation Attleboro. It has become a great pleasure and honor to have come to know Jerry over the past few weeks as like some of the others before him he has impacted my life and contributed to making my direction clear.
WELCOME HOME BRO
MAY 19, 2003