Good Afternoon Vietnam: A Civilian in the Vietnam War by Gary Wilhelm
This story of a civilian technology engineer working with the Marines in DaNang, Vietnam, in 1968 and 1969 was written by Gary Wilhelm, Carolyn’s husband. Wilhelm arrived in a blue suit and tie from a military chartered plane and finally found his back way to the USA for a company that resisted ending his work term and allowing him to come home.
A Civilian Working in a War Zone
The position was working with the computer technology of the time and the US Marine Corp. No one else from his company who had previously gone to Vietnam was available to tell him what he could expect. No one was there to meet his plane!
Working with the Marines
The memories include the night sky being alive with planes circling the base, listening to a bamboo band play American military songs, learning first-hand how difficult holidays are in a war zone, where as a civilian he was not allowed to carry a weapon. His volunteer position as a substitute English teacher for the South Vietnamese was protected by Marines with shotguns and side-arms.
Life Learning: This is a story of adaptation, survival and the life perspective war can bring. Gary’s blog, The Frugal Engineer.
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