June 8, 1970, is the date I never forget.
My platoon (2nd, Charlie Co, 2/12Inf, 25th ID), inside Cambodia by presidential order, walked into a U-shaped ambush of North Vietnamese soldiers. After a brief period of complete horror, seven or eight soldiers were severely wounded. (I was the least wounded.) After helping carry out the wounded, our new buddy in country was KIA. While loading all the wounded on medevac choppers, someone shouted, "Breeding you're bleeding!"
I looked down at my left leg, felt something warm and wet inside my boot, noticed blood on my pants and immediately fell to the ground (like a rock, I was told later). I was brought back to consciousness by a buddy who gave me mouth-to-mouth. I was carried to the medevac chopper along with the other wounded, flown to the 12 EVAC Hospital in Tay Ninh.
I was treated for shock and shrapnel wounds. I remember that June day often and especially on the anniversary. My buddy who was killed had a pregnant wife back in Mississippi. I plan on visiting his grave someday, and hopefully meet his family. I have spoken to his sister several times in years past. I have survivor guilt. If anyone deserved to make it back in the world alive, it was Wayne!
During 1970, I knew four other Charlie Company soldiers who lost their lives. I think of them all very often.