Hiya, what would ya like to hear about, the oppressive blistering heat, the dung
beetles that sound like C-130s or capturing scorpions for fun and profit....LOL. Just blowing smoke, any way, I enlisted
for a 4 year hitch as a heavy wheeled vehicle mechanic in 1986, about 30 days after I graduated high school. Did basic and
AIT (Advanced Infantry Training) at Ft. Jackson SC. First duty station was Bad Hersfeld, Germany with the 3/11th ACR,
went from there to Ft. Hood Tx. to finish my enlistment with 1/20th Field Artillery. I had a really hardcore squad leader
that had just come from 25th Inf. in Hawaii, ended up re-enlisting and reclassifying to 11H10 which is Heavy Anti-Armor Crew
I got sent to Ft. Benning for Infantry school and orders for the 101st. Arrived
at Ft. Campbell, stayed long enough to unpack civilian clothes, meet most of the guys in my company, yes it was Dco 2/187th
4th platoon 4th squad. Our vehicles and missile systems were already enroute to Saudi Arabia, equipment was deployed so fast
they didn't even have time to repaint them to desert tan. And I found myself in the middle of a very nasty place at the ripe
old age of 22. I was one of the oldest soldiers, most of the rest of the guys had just come from Panama. When we landed at
Dhahran ( sorry, can't spell or even pronounce most of the places I've been) the first thing we were told was to drink water,
that was also a favorite saying for the drill sgts at Ft. Benning. By about 9:30 that morning I understood the water, my
god it gets hot quick in the desert!
The first 3 weeks all we did was get used to the heat, that meant sit out in the
sun for about 2 or 3 hours reading training manuals or cleaning weapons. Our missile systems were mounted on hummers. There
are 4 positions on a gun truck: Driver, TC- truck commander, gunner, and loader, all the loader does is help load a missile
into the system and make sure he's got his head down when the gunner does his job. Most of the time I was the gunner but there
were times we would change out positions just to break the monotony.
When the trucks got there we moved out of King Fahd airport to forward positions
during Desert Shield, and pulled roving patrols at night. I do remember during Desert Storm when we weren't patrolling,
just laying on the hood of the truck watching the tracers and listening to the artillery its amazing what some people can
sleep to (lol). The only Vietnam Vet was our first Sgt. did not get to know him very well only knew that he was a hard core,
hard charging SOB. I haven't been in touch with any of my guys yet, just started trying to find them. I know I've just
hit and miss some of the highlights and my typing and grammar sucks but I was an Infantry trooper not an English major (please
bear with me....lol
4th Platoon / D Company / 2nd Battalion / 187th Infantry / 101st Airborne (Air Assault)
First Row: SFC Bradshaw Plt. Sgt, Lieutenant
Smith Plt. Leader.
Second Row: Spec. Mike Case, name forgotten, Sgt. Williams, (the next trooper
was my roommate) Pfc. Robert (Pete) Peterson from South Boston.
Third Row: Pfc. Adam Alfaro, name forgotten,
Spec. Charles Palmer (Chuck the goat slayer), Spec. Dennis Shaw, Pfc. Patrick Crockett (killed in auto accident after returned
to Ft. Campbell).
Top row: Pfc. Mike Lebato, name forgotten, Pfc. Rodney Luster, Pfc. John Durst,
Spec. Jeff Huskey. SSgt Louis Lee.
King Fahd International Airport - Prior to Desert Storm
Clothes hanging on the tent ropes to dry after it rained on the RAKKASANS ("If it ain't rainin' - we ain't
Spc. Jeff Huskey
"Check out those dress right dress tent stakes!"