Combat Medic – Men with Destiny – the Red Cross of Valor by Carl ToersBijns
This book is dedicated to those men and women who fought in the Vietnam War and those family members who sacrificed it all for their country. It is also dedicated to all those who are MIA and KIA and is a recollection of the war experiences written by the author while he was assigned to the Americal Division in Chu Lai, 1967 – 1968 and attached to the 23rd Medical Battalion Headquarters Battalion.
This book is simply more than a war story. Each chapter details an assortment of assignments the author received during his tour of duty in South Vietnam, during the monsoon season and the troublesome years of the TET offensive that was launched that year and created what turned out to be a most significant event and almost cost the U.S. the war as it suffered record high wounded and fatalities as well as opposition and protests of these deaths, because the media brought the war into the living room. It does not delve into the political reasoning or the military strategies. It is simply a record of 365 days of hell in a strange country during wartime. These chapters are filled with different experiences from ‘line medics’ on ‘bush’ patrol assignment to the courage of those working the Dustoff/Medevac duties, riding with the armored cavalry, joining different search and destroy missions, recognizing brave military police actions and demonstrate the vulnerability of high risk convoys on highway 1.
It also personalizes the setting with photographs and memories, combat fatigue and PTSD before it was legitimately recognized as a mental illness. Additionally, there are short stories and how the concept of war is morally or socially acceptable under certain terms and ideologies. It touches briefly on the psychological drawback of survivor’s guilt syndrome, and the paradoxes of making war. It also dedicates a major explanation on the MEDCAP and other civic action programs the governments designed, developed and funded to win the hearts of the South Vietnamese peopleThis book is not for everyone – the target groups are Vietnam veterans and their families as well as others who are interested in this conflict’s history and who are willing to look at war from another perspective besides fighting and see how the war brought out the kindness in heart, promote religious commitment to peace and compassion for the innocent children, adults, and elderly.
The author tried to focus on the medic’s character, their courage, valor, integrity and the compassion of how they sanctified their honor during this war. It is after all is said, a personal diary of events that happened more than 50 years ago.
The author didn’t want to write a book about the ugliness of this war but rather, demonstrate the elements of war and show its impact on human beings, good and bad; and then rationalize why wars are fought to begin with even today.
During the Civil War, General Sherman alluded to the fact that “war is hell”; there is no doubt that after you read this book, the author’s point to awaken your morality and aroused conscious desires for peace and love for humanity. You will understand that the Vietnam War was more than battles, injuries and deaths. It was about people. Rather simplified, this war that was fought on all sides, created a moral conflict inside the head and hearts of those who fought there, experienced it and lived with these extreme conditions. This non-fictional novel is not filled with specific battles, brutality and horror. This prose is a mere presentation of raw literature and is an attempt to humanize the war into the reality it is for soldiers in battle and civilians caught on the battlefield. Added feature is an additional chapter on “Trauma of War” and the “Departure and Homecoming” of a soldier engaged and suddenly disengaged or displaced in a new environment. It is the graphic explanation of the homecoming that is a key to the PTSD treatment needed. .Also discussed are convoy truck drivers, military police escorts, ghosts & ambushes
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Five Star Review on Amazon
Good story with an interesting perspective.
About the Author
First and foremost, a sincere and deep appreciation for visiting and buying my Kindle E-books and paperbacks. When I did my bio on this author page I wrote what was on my mind and in my heart. Therefore, some of my books are some awkwardly titled and sometimes controversial in content but they are are all written for one purpose – to provoke you to think. Some are deliberately short and slightly twisted or dark. I strongly believe that mood and attitude drive the brain. Others are written to be brief and to the point for those who don’t like long stories and have very little time or short attention spans (sarcasm) so I am the first to acknowledge my writings are different and with your help and reviews provided, I know I will do better and study or amend my books as they are written and read. The fact that I read my reviews is my way of studying what the reader wants, not what the author wants.
I read and take into consideration every review written and received, no matter how harsh these reviews may be as I am used to candidness, sarcasm, and open dialogues as a retired prison warden who has dealt with the “worst of the worst” society could lock up in prison and separate from our communities to serve their time. My skin is only as thick as the occasion calls for at the time of the encounter. As most will notice, these books don’t conform to any style. They are usually not politically correct and are for those who call themselves ‘free-thinkers.’
My writings whether fiction, non-fiction, and all genre do not fall into a specific category -why? Because I write what I feel, and that’s a flawed style today as all has to be perfect to please everyone. I understand that concept well. However, I write for myself and those who want to get to know me as a person or author. I am far from perfect, yet I want to express myself at my terms and those others understand without all the political correctness. At the same time, when I do write and receive feedback, I always take that feedback into consideration for the future or to revise or amend what I have already written.
As a reader, you are my editor and you set the tone or tempo/mood for the books. For that, I am eternally grateful. I love people, I respect people and I recognize people as my family as we are all connected one way or another. I write to express what is on my mind. There are no formalities to my thought process. I am spontaneously writing down what I am thinking. My writings are sometimes raw, rude, crude and every other negative in the book business. They are, however, filled with passion, respect, dignity and love for mankind and the human race. I believe we are all connected.
In my books, there are writings of love, hate, war, peace, wrath, and compassion. I write the reality of the world I live in. It’s not a pretty world but its the real world. I have lived good people and bad people in my life. At work, I was associated with liars, cheats, crooks, perverts and the seriously mentally ill. I am a real person, not superficial but real. I dig for the truth of my life and the things that evolve or impact around me. On the other side of the coin I write fictional and fantasy short stories to bring a lighter side of life to the reader. I enjoy people, animals, and nature.
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