Learn about the experience of being a soldier in Vietnam from the men who experienced the war first hand from the front lines to the offices back on the bases in Lesson Five of Vietnam War Oral History Lesson Plans.
Terry Hairrell of Waukegan, Illinois led men into combat in Vietnam, yet one of his strongest memories is of the South Vietnamese family that befriended him. Richard Hertel of Milladore, Wisconsin spent his time in Vietnam as a secretary filing records and keeping track of soldiers. Joseph Rank of Urbana, Illinois spent his time in Vietnam on a destroyer providing support for American troops from a distance, but still felt a close connection with the troops he fought with. Steve Allen of Tuscola, Illinois, was on the front lines and experienced the day-to-day grind of being a foot soldier and came to deal with the fears that crippled some men. Paul Wisovaty of Taylorville, Illinois learned war gives each solider a simple task: kill or be killed. Jerome Weise of Rantoul, Illinois served as a combat medic during the Vietnam War and experienced things that he would never forget.