Ron Shattuck was drafted into the Army at the beginning of the Vietnam War, and was on the first ship over.
After setting up Camp Ranger at Bien Hoa, 28 miles north of Saigon, he was a machine gun gunner in the 2nd platoon, eventually becoming squad leader.
John Knight enlisted in the Navy at the end of the Vietnam War. His ship was part of Operation Frequent Wind, the last ones out of the country.
This photo of refugees on Knight’s ship show several children with no adult to accompany them.
First ones in, last ones out: Gregory men bookend Vietnam War
Ron Shattuck was drafted into the Army and reported for his physical in Sioux Falls on November 22, 1963, but because the funeral for President Kennedy was that day, the physical was postponed for the following day.
He reported for training on February 12, 1964 and took basic training at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri and Advanced Infantry Training (A.I.T.) at Fort Riley, KS, where he was assigned to Company B 2nd Battalion, 16th Infantry, 1st Division, also known as “Big Red One.”
In June 1965, the whole division, equipment and men, went by train to the West Coast, transferred to the U.S. Gordon, and departed for “Southeast Asia,” which turned out to be Vietnam. After 19 days, he and his seasick comrades landed at Saigon, making the Big Red One one of the first full divisions in Vietnam.
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