Updated: Jul 8, 2020
Number 1, the Blog page I did on Joe Barbarise needed time to settle. and I needed some input on the post I created. Number two, I had made my peace with Duke II. Number three, Feb. 22, 1969, Phu Cat AB was hit by a ground force of VC sappers.
I expect push-back on the AO expose' of the pain and suffering that huge numbers of Vietnam Veterans have endured due to Agent Orange poisoning. But mostly this nations has been shielded form the truth. The truth is to big for weak minds. Worst, we Veterans who suffer, silently, seem to take some strange and perverse satisfaction at enduring male-stoic passivity. I don't get it. I'm mad as hell and, why the hell aren't veterans up in arms. How many friends, buddies, comrades in arms, what-ever you call a Vietnam Veteran, how many brother's must we watch being reduced to the walking dead.
I wonder when Veterans Groups start raising money for yet another memorial, latest memorial to Agent Orange victims. 'Oh boy! A whole new agenda. Gee-golly, we can build memorials all over America. That will keep the membership focused for a while.' While Veterans organization, pretend doing good for all Veterans, except the sick ones, I'm here to tell you our numbers are less than 700,000 and the 'walking dead is dying off right before your eye's.
Oh! Duke II, you poor dumb dog.
You would have made a hell of a pet for a family with kids and big fenced in yard. Ever since that night SSgt. Frances ran a practice alert, by coming on my post and seeing at what point Duke would alert, well, Duke II never alerted and sealed his fate that night.
Before Sergeant Frances mounted up to leave,
I asked, "What was going to happen to Duke, will they send him somewhere he can receive more training?" Yeah?! I'm naïve.
Frances just look for a long second, grinned, slammed the jeep into gear, "Moore, what will most likely happen to your dog is he will be sent to Saigon and put down."
"That's it?! I asked.
Frances drove off, and I was left looking down at Duke, thinking about my dog being put down. Oh! shit boy. If this is the Air Force way of dealing with a sub-standard Sentry Dog, whom am I to complain. I've risked my life for six weeks, it's time to get a real MWD and put Duke II out to pasture.
It took a little time to sink in, and when I realizes Dukes nights where numbered, I could no longer be mad at the animal. In fact, I excepted that Duke II would never harm another, to protect me or any other handler, and it would cost him his life.
BUT, a part of me didn't care.
That night, February 22, 1969, we got hit. Duke's fate was sealed. I would load Duke II for the plane ride south to Tan Son Nhut AB which was located right in the middle of the capital city of South Vietnam, Saigon.
But the longest night of my life lay right here in front of me, right now.
Early shift had departed their usual time and a group of us were just returning from supper. The alarm went out, the base is under attack, you've ten minutes to get ready for work and be at the pick up point. Move it, move it!
Intruders are inside the wire, one handler down.