Posted by Michael Putzel • August 25, 2015
When Clyde Romero is inaugurated as president of the Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association on August 29, two members of a tiny Band of Brothers will be on hand to applaud their long-ago comrade-in-arms.
The fourth flying soldier in their practically unique group died a hermit several years ago. All four men were black and members of the same storied air cavalry unit in Vietnam.
At the reunion banquet in Washington of the 16,000-member Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association, retired Colonel Romero will become the first African-American to be elected president of the VHPA.
Romero was 19 when he flew his OH-6 scout into the most dangerous antiaircraft battle ever endured by helicopters and their crews. His “little bird” was part of a flying U.S. armada supporting thousands of South Vietnamese ground forces […] READ MORE
Posted by Michael Putzel • August 16, 2015
I have just watched an amazing documentary about a company of draftees sent into the Mekong Delta in 1967 as part of the 9th Infantry Division. Like The Price They Paid, the film focuses on a single unit and the hellacious combat the troops encountered, the bonds they forged and the losses they endured.
Unlike my book, Brothers in War weaves together latter-day interviews with the soldiers and remarkable archival footage, including home movies and the work of Army combat cinematographers, to show viewers what the men faced in the rice paddies, muddy canals and hamlets that were the fighting fields south of Saigon. The year, 1967, was a dreadful time for American forces fully committed in a country they didn’t understand and a type of warfare they hadn’t learned to […] READ MORE