The Untold Story of the 82nd Airborne in Vietnam and Beyond
Brigade is derived from a French word that means those who fight. Those who went to war together under the battle flag of the Third Brigade of the 82nd Airborne Division, known in Vietnam as the Golden Brigade, formed an unbreakable bond of brotherhood in 22 months of combat while America went through tumultuous changes at home. That bond endured in the five decades after the war as survivors honored the 227 brigade members who died in Vietnam.
More than just a number or names on a memorial, the casualties were flesh-and-blood individuals whose lives are remembered in the recollections of their comrades. To tell the story of the fallen, many of the survivors opened up for the first time to talk about the war and its aftermath.
Perspectives gained at the ground level during the intensity of battle and the daily slog of shared hardship offer a fresh look by those who fought their generation’s war. Sometimes, a scar has to be cut open again to allow for proper healing.
“A must read by military historians who follow the 82nd Airborne Division. It is a compilation of fascinating stories by brave soldiers who found themselves in the crucible of fierce combat. Their courage and the leadership of General Bud Bolling are the standard by which others will be measured for generations to come.”
—H-Minus, LTG (Ret) James H. Johnson, 82nd Airborne Division Commander, Panama and Desert Storm
“This book is the best I have ever read about the real situation experienced by infantrymen in the Vietnam War. The stories honor the American soldier and their families and demonstrate the pride all of us had in these men and their leaders. It honors the American soldier and demonstrates the pride all of us had in the Golden Brigade. No one else, except someone who has lived through these types of situations, could have captured the true and in-depth feelings of the combat infantryman like this. A grand slam hit out of the park.”
—Robert D. Murrill, Esq., former company commander and staff officer,
Distinguished Member of the 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment
“A must read for military historians and members of the Golden Brigade. Bob Dvorchak has accomplished something unique through this history of the brigade in Vietnam. He does so by telling the personal stories of those who fought and died there. Their bravery and sacrifice is found on every page. Through interviews and reports we learn their stories—where they came from, where they went, and for those who survived, who they became. From the storied brigade commander, Bud Bolling, to the teenager whose life was cut short before his twentieth birthday. It’s a story that needs to be told and one that all paratroopers, young and old need to know. When the nation calls, there were, and must always be, those who will answer—even if it means they sacrifice their todays so that others will experience their tomorrows.”
—J. Thomas Hennessey, Jr. Colonel, Infantry (Retired), Distinguished Member of the 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, Chief of Staff Emeritus, George Mason University