war paint



At that point I knew it was over -- I knew I wasn't going to make it. At that moment, I was at peace with myself -- I wasn't upset, I sat there and waited for the end.
     The thing that really saved me was that there was a medevac that was flying right over head -- he heard the radio call and said "I'm right there" and they picked me up. When we landed at the air strip in DaNang, they didn't even take me off the chopper -- two corpsmen jumped in, and they grabbed my arms and started giving me plasma and blood. Talking to guys from the company afterwards, they told me that we were wounded at about 9:20 Saturday morning and I believe they started the operation at 10:45, so within an hour and twenty minutes I was forty miles away and in the operating room. The surgeons told me afterwards that I should have bled to death, and that the wounds themselves should have killed me, but somewhere there I had the will to live.
    It's like my 2nd birthday -- I started life again right then. I celebrate it every year with my wife and my kids. My wife -- we were engaged before I went over, she waited for me -- always hugs me and kisses me on that day -- It's a day I'll never forget.
     I always wanted to be a Marine. Just the idea of doing something that I thought was right -- if you believe in something, like freedom, that strongly then I think you should be willing to defend it. That's what I thought about it.