Thursday, August 29, 1968
We managed to get a good afternoon nap following the sleep disruption of the previous night. After dinner we took turns showering and sat outside as the sun went down. Normally the action was in Arizona to the south, but further east beyond Dai Loc, we could see activity.
The usual sequence was illumination rounds, then tracers going both ways and sometimes ARTY ending the event. It was never exactly the same, and from a distance we had no idea what was happening, only that it must be Hell being a Grunt. These nightly shows never lasted long. The NVA would engage and pull away . . . it was their strategy.
Tonight was different. The battle went on with starts and stops; finally the big Basketball illumination lit up the sky. Spooky showered the area, like a fire hose shooting out sparklers. Foolish green tracers shot toward the sky and were extinguished with Spooky’s golden rain. We looked on our map, and the azimuth lined up with Dodge City . . . it was probably the 7th Marines.
We went to bed not knowing the outcome. I was exhausted and slept like a rock, but my brain stood watch, listening for the sound of incoming mortars. Our guns fired H&I rounds all night, but I slept soundly through their thunder.
Next Edition: Chaplain Starling Stumbles