Tag Archives: greenline

Got a Break

Broke my thumb in a Bizarre Accident

It was a lazy Sunday afternoon and all was quiet except for outgoing artillery going off behind us. Staff Sgt. David Roger, and I was sitting on top of a perimeter bunker on the greenline of Phuoc Vinh firebase. We had a transistor radio and were taking in tunes from a radio station in Saigon (VAFN), which made our guard duty more enjoyable.

I recall what song was playing when my backwards descend began as sandbags I was sitting on gave way. It was “Spill The Wine” by Eric Burdon and War. As I picked myself up off the ground I knew I injured my right hand when I tried to break my fall of about ten feet.

Sgt. Roger couldn’t believe what had just happened and that made two of us. He got on the radio and called for a jeep to take me to the first aid station to get checked out. After X-rays, it was determined that my thumb was indeed broken. They put a cast on my hand, gave me some pain meds and I was on my way.

At that point, I was wondering what Charlie Troop was going to do with me while I was on the mend. I wouldn’t be on any Blues missions for a while in this condition…

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Filed under Vietnam War

Perimeter Guard Duty

Outer Limits of a Military Position


Sgt. Tony Mizzi and I standing in front of a bunker on the Phuoc Vinh perimeter. Tony was from New York City, and as I recall wanted to be a NYC cop when he got back to the ‘World’. Tony, if you get a chance to read this, you still owe me twenty bucks.


Eddie Smith from San Diego with Tony and I on a greenline bunker. The greenline (perimeter) is the outer limits of a military position. The area beyond the perimeter belongs to the enemy.

During the night, you sat on top of the bunker with a M-60 machine gun and watched for enemy movement outside the perimeter. On occasion, you shot a flare into the air to light up the area. We also were equipped with a starlight scope for night vision.

We took turns doing two-hour watches, and when you were off, there was a cot in the dug-out lower part of the bunker where you could get some sleep. I recall one night a screaming noise and something running across my legs woke me up. It was rats fighting over food scraps laying on the ground next to my cot. That event intensified my hatred for rats…


Filed under Vietnam War