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Serving my tour in 67 - 68 173rd Airborne
Spent most of my time in the bush.
Encountered lots of fire fighters in the bush -
None more greater than that of Dakto.

June 22, 1967

"A" Company got ambushed bad.
I, with "C" Company went to get down to the wounded,
Only to be sprayed with lead - And:  Back up we abounded.
Was too large a force to be re-conned with down below ...
Was told to dig in deep and get ready for the overflow.
Day became night; And:  as we were at our positions;
And: hearing all the screams and cries for help from below,
Had that gut feeling that I wanted to go.

Although it was dark, still I wanted to embark.
Night became day, then we went down to Company "A"
What a horrible sight we found with all dead.
"Hill 875" in November lay ahead -
Even more horrible than can be said.

Being back home; And:  Over the years,
Have found in myself even drowning in tears.
Have often wanted to take my own life.
To stop the awful, horrible strife.
Found my help in the VA ... and then I was on my way.
Had Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and had to stay.

Stayed in the VA Hospital until I could get a lot of the horrors
out of my head;
And:  Open some of my doors.
I know will never the the same as before the war;
But:  Now taking my life is not so much more.
Help is out there, my Brothers;
And:  The door is always open.
Go to the VA and say, "I'm here and I need to stay."
They will help you get on your way -
To a better life with out re-living the war inside -
A whole lot better than suicide.

Our families have suffered along with us -
Don't be selfish and leave them that way.
We have hope -
And:  With hope we can cope.
Just ask for help and be on your way
To a brighter and warmer day.

In loving memory of the Brothers of the HERD
No longer here; But:  Inspired me to writhe these words.
Suicide is a helluva price to pay.
Not allowing our families another day.
We are loved and cared for by those who love us -
Let's not hurt them and instead ask for their forgiveness.


© Dec 18, 1997 by JIM SIMPSON 173RD AIRBORNE BDE. C 2/503 INFANTRY 67-68


Was in Vietnam in 67-68
With the 173rd Airborne Infantry

Combat, and wounded, and death were a part of it ~
It was hell any way you want to say or put it ~
Have to fall in - and do what is necessary to survive ...
And:  Not showing feelings was a way to stay alive.
I saw and did things that were very devastating to me;
But:  In a war like Vietnam, it was that it had to be.

After being home, I knew something was wrong ...
Jobs and relationships came and went like a song.
Later in my life I found I had P.T.S.D. - and it was a big part of me.
Little things began to trigger me; And:  I began to see ...
I was still fighting the war that was still very deep within me.

While in the hospital I was told there was no cure ...
It would always be there; And:  Had to learn things, for sure ~
Ways to cope, find hope, and see what was within me.
Was put on medications to comfort - to a degree ...
It's one hell of a journey - This P.S.T.D. and me.

I try to pass on what works for me - to help others that they may see;
But:  I know there's no cure - it will always be.
The last thing to follow when it's time to bury me,
Will be P.T.S.D. crawling down in the hole on top of me;
But:  It will be then that I will know peace ~
Yes, it will be then that I find total release.
The war within me will cease to be - No more!
That's when the close will be of that last door,
Nightmares, and all, that comes from P.T.S.D.
Will all be over - and no more for another to see.
Sad, but true ...
That's why I write in blue
Yes, I'm tired of fighting this war within me ...
It's just good to know it's P.T.S.D. - and not all me.

For the 173rd Airborne, and all that served,
I hope you find the help you so rightfully deserve.
Not an easy task ...
But:  All you have to do is ask.
Be well, my brothers, I know how you feel.
Yes, we got a bad deal - and that's for real.
God be with us and with those already gone.
Soon, we will understand why we're like we are ...
It will be in the wonderful hands of God himself.

© January 1998, by JIM SIMPSON 173RD AIRBORNE BDE. C 2/503 INFANTRY 67-68


In Nam 67 - 68 173rd Airborne infantry,
Found Two seasons - wet and dry.
Dry was always so hot and all we done was sweat.
When the monsoon hit, all of us stayed real wet.

While in the rain, I endured a lot of pain ~
Had a friend get shot up real bad in the rain.
As we worked on him, the blood ran out of him fast ~
I knew inside me, he wasn't going to last.

As I saw the rain wash his blood away on the jungle floor,
I felt my insides get up tight ... and tears began to pour.
Now as I look back and think of it,
I feel the rain was God's Tears.
Yes, Tears from above as God knew of the loss ...
It's sometimes so hard for me to take these things to the Cross.

But:  In my heart today, I believe in a different way.
God sheds His Tears of Pain for those that fight the wars.
And:  Yes, at times He sheds tears of joy so that all His World
Can grow trees and flowers and grass ~
All that has to have water in order to survive
and remain alive.
At times God cries tears in abundance,
As so much to flood -
Trying to let us know what we do wrong -
To get out of the mud.

This is what I think of rain ~
It's just like the pain we have inside.
Out comes the pain ...
Yes, out of our eyes, through cries -
Letting others know our pain and our hurt.

God, through His rain is doing the same.
Short of the Glory of His Creation and what It's meant to be,
He gave up His Only Son in spite of me.
So His Rains Are His Tears, See?

Got, I offer myself to Thee
And:  Hope You use me.
To help others see.
What rain really is and what it means.
Without Your Tears of pain and joy,
This world is no more.
Your Tears wash the Wall in D.C. -
Keeping those that gave all,
A-sparkle and glow.
That all people will know and call
The most humbling experience they will ever understand -
How You felt when they gave the Command on Your Son.

He is my Savior now: And:  When it rains now,
I understand.
Looking up and raising my hands, I give thanks to You;
For:  You are in Command; And:  I feel Your Hand.
Use me as You see fit and like the Paratroopers,
I'll never quit.
As Spring comes to be, I hope all can see;
The Beauty comes from all You have done ...
And Appreciate, too.
The Ultimate Sacrifice You Made.
To cary us Through.
In His Name is why I write about rain ...
Hope it eases some pain.
My heart is warm inside;
And:  I feel You have those that died ...
In Your Arms they are alive.
For me, I have yet to die.
For:  I fear not, for I am coming home to You, Lord.
No war ... And the rain there will be that of joy.
Dedicated to the Lord and all that served
Especially my brothers in the 173rd.
May my brothers find your peace, Lord ...
And:  Use me to guide them home.

©  February 2, 1998, by JIM SIMPSON 173RD AIRBORNE BDE. C 2/503 INFANTRY 67-68

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