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Interesting story


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His post Vietnam service story in itself is also a worthwhile read. Imagine putting on and wearing a stiff shooting jacket on a hot day just so you could compete, after having suffered the burns he did?

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I'm sure many have seen this picture

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The guy on the left is Charles Benjamin "Chuck" Mawhinney (born 1949) is a United States Marine who holds the Corps' record for the most confirmed sniper kills, having recorded 103 confirmed kills and 216 probable kills in 16 months during the Vietnam War.

Mawhinney, the son of a World War II Marine Corps veteran, was born in 1949 in Lakeview, Oregon, and was an avid hunter in his youth. He graduated from high school in June 1967 and joined the U.S. Marine Corps later that year—after the deer season.

Following enlistment, he attended Scout Sniper School at Camp Pendleton and graduated in April 1968. From there he received orders to South Vietnam where upon arrival he was assigned as a rifleman to Lima Company 1st Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division. He remained in this unit for 3 months until he was re-assigned to 5th Marine Regiment HQ Scout Sniper Platoon. There he worked as a scout sniper for different companies with the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Battalions. He also worked with the South Korean Marines, Force Recon, Army CAG Unit, but the majority of his time was with Delta Company. During this tour he is credited with 103 confirmed People's Army of Vietnam (PAVN)/Viet Cong (VC) kills and 216 probables. He spent 16 months in Vietnam, starting in early 1968.

On Valentine's Day 1969, Mawhinney encountered an enemy platoon and killed 16 PAVN soldiers with head shots.

"It was the ultimate hunting trip: a man hunting another man who was hunting me," Mawhinney told the Los Angeles Times. "Don't talk to me about hunting lions or elephants; they don't fight back with rifles and scopes. I just loved it." Mawhinney sought to change the public perception about snipers, who he maintains save lives by sapping the enemy's will to fight. "My rules of engagement were simple: If they had a weapon, they were going down. Except for an NVA paymaster I hit at 900 yards, everyone I killed had a weapon," he said.

Mawhinney's one regret was the one that got away. After a leave from Vietnam, he returned and retrieved his weapon from the armorer, who assured Mawhinney that he hadn't altered the rifle. But when Mawhinney spotted an enemy at only 300 yards, a range he was routinely a deadly shot, he missed several times, and the man got away.

"I can't help thinking about how many people that he may have killed later, how many of my friends, how many Marines. He [messed] up and he deserved to die. That still bothers me."[1]

After a chaplain declared him "combat fatigued", Mawhinney returned to the United States and served briefly as a marksmanship instructor at Camp Pendleton.

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  • 4 weeks later...

RIGHTEOUS AMONG THE NATIONS—Here is America's only soldier to ever receive Israel’s highest honor conferred on non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust. On this day 77 years ago, facing the threat of immediate execution, he and his men displayed an act of courage and character that exemplifies what it means to take a stand against evil. 

US Army Master Sergeant Roddie Edmonds, 422nd Infantry Regiment, 106th Infantry Division, the “Golden Lions”, was captured by German forces at the onset of the Battle of the Bulge. A native of Knoxville, TN, Edmonds was 25 years old. He had only been on the front line for five days when his unit was overrun.

Edmonds' captors marched him east where he was transferred to Stalag IX-A, a camp for enlisted personnel just east of Bonn, Germany. As the senior noncommissioned officer at the camp, Edmonds found himself responsible for 1,275 American POWs.

On January 27, 1945, the Camp Commandant ordered Edmonds to assemble all the Jewish-American soldiers so they could be separated from the other prisoners. 

Defiantly, Edmonds assembled all 1,275 American POWs.

Furious, the German commandant walked quickly up to Edmonds, placed a pistol against Edmonds' forehead, and demanded that he identify the Jewish soldiers within the ranks.

Edmonds, a keen and dedicated Baptist, responded sternly, "We are all Jews here."

Edmonds then warned the commandant that if he wanted to shoot the Jews, he'd have to shoot everyone, and that if he harmed any of Edmonds' men, the commandant would be prosecuted for war crimes when Germany lost. Edmonds then recited that the Geneva Conventions required POWs to give only their name, rank, and serial number, not their religion.

The commandant backed down.

Edmonds' actions are credited with saving 200 Jewish-American soldiers from being murdered. He survived 100 days of captivity, and returned home after the war, but kept the event at the POW camp to himself. He never told anyone. Edmonds later served in Korea.

It was only after Edmonds’ death in 1985 and the review of his diaries by his son that his story came to light. Jewish-American POWs, including Sonny Fox who after the war became an executive with NBC. He verified the story as did other POWs who were glad to share. The State of Israel declared Edmonds “Righteous Among the Nations” in 2015.

Today is International Holocaust Remembrance Day. As we pause to remember the 6 million Jews and 11 million others murdered at the hand of their captors, we also commend all Allied Veterans who helped bring the tyranny of the Third Reich to an end. Master Sergeant Edmonds and the 1,275 American soldiers who stood defiantly with him on this day were a part of that story. We are the benefactors, and we pause to give our thanks. All The Way and more.

Photo, courtesy of Yad Vashem: World Holocaust Center, Jerusalem, The Jewish Foundation for the Righteous and The Rev. Chris Edmonds. #WeRemember #WeShareToRemember #holocaust #onthisday #neveragain #HolocaustMemorialDay #HolocaustRemembranceDay

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  • 2 weeks later...

Oldest Recruit In the History of Parris Island-

The average age of a United States Marine Corps recruit is 21 years old. When Paul Douglas enlisted in 1942, he left behind his wife, child, and career and reported to Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island at the ripe age of 50.

After completing boot camp, Douglas proudly wrote “I found myself able to take the strenuous boot camp training without asking for a moment's time out and without visiting the sick bay.” 

Following a recommendation from his commanding officer (and a strong recommendation from his old friend Frank Knox,) Douglas was commissioned as a captain in the Marine Corps, after seven months as an enlisted Marine.

Douglas went on to serve in the battle of Okinawa, often being remembered by Marines for running around the battlefield with the vigor of a much younger Marine. He was promoted to major during the battle of Okinawa.

Douglas had been hit by a machine gun in his left forearm and was evacuated by the men that he had dedicated his life to serving. After being hit, he proceeded to use his uninjured hand to take off his major rank insignia so that he wouldn’t receive special attention. 

Douglas expressed passionate interest in returning early to his men to continue serving on the front lines. He was hospitalized in San Francisco and subsequently moved to Bethesda, Maryland where it took more than 14 months to be dismissed from the hospital and was medically retired from the Marine Corps, only regaining partial use of his left hand.

Because of his brave actions under fire and unselfish service he was promoted to lieutenant colonel a year after he retired in January of 1947. After returning to Chicago as a war hero, Douglas won his spot as Illinois state senator in 1949. Even in public office Douglas continued to advocate for the Marine Corps, and proudly kept the Marine Corps standard displayed in office.

 

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On 2/16/2022 at 2:41 PM, shepp said:


Omar “crispy” Avila,

 

 

I love Crispy, brother - thank you for posting that.  Met him a couple years ago at SHOT, at the bar on the range.  One hell of an impressive guy.  :hail:

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On 2/17/2022 at 8:17 PM, 98Z5V said:

I love Crispy, brother - thank you for posting that.  Met him a couple years ago at SHOT, at the bar on the range.  One hell of an impressive guy.  :hail:

Hell yea he is! He’s someone that inspires me to be a better person 

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RIP Soldier🇺🇸

HUMBLE WARRIOR, AMAZING SOUL—WWII Paratrooper Dan McBride captured the hearts of people everywhere. We are sad to say that he departed this life yesterday, now challenging all of us to pay his life forward. 

For anyone who knew Dan, he beamed with all the good and decency that any one of us could ever hope to aspire to. There was something special he imparted that made people feel better about themselves...and better about life. If you want to hear about Dan the warrior, it starts with understanding Dan the soul.


Dan was as humble a person as you could ever meet. Dan entered WWII parachuting into Normandy and finished it with a well-deserved joyride in Hitler’s own Mercedes-Benz. In between those events, Dan was at the front of the Allied advance across France, then Holland, and then Belgium during the Battle of the Bulge. Every bit a hero, Dan was never boastful, never prideful, and was always modest about his actions during the war.

Dan served as a sniper and rifle grenadier with Fox Company, 502nd Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division. And in Dan the Airborne got exactly what it needed—an independent, athletic, smart and agile young man who could think on his feet and who had a distinct mischievous side. Prone to laughter, he managed to see irony and humor in just about everything. 

Dan’s humor no doubt helped him cope with the ravages of war, and he tapped into that humor from the start. Dan's very first combat experience was lying unconscious on a drop zone in Normandy after his parachute opened afoul. He landed headfirst. “When I became conscious,” he once said, “even my hair hurt.”

He got right back into the fight, though, and that was Dan. By all accounts he was a force to be reckoned with. He often came face to face with the enemy and yet always walked away the victor. By the end of the war he had risen to the rank of Sergeant and was awarded three purple hearts for wounds received in combat.

True to Dan’s whimsical nature, he didn’t join the Airborne because he saw an inspiring recruiting poster or some sharp looking paratrooper walk through his neighborhood. Rather, it all started at a movie theater while on a date. . The news reels had shown footage of paratroopers jumping from planes. The young woman he was with was totally enamored with them. And, so, Dan thought he’d impress her. He enlisted—even though he had a fear of heights.

“It wasn’t long after,” he told us, “that I was hanging upside down coming in headfirst over Normandy!”

There are many stories like that that we and others who were blessed to know Dan will always remember. Dan was a great storyteller—a man very matter of fact about life during combat, very cheerful about everything else, and always with a clear affection in his eyes when he mentioned the 101st.

Dan was born and raised in northern Ohio and in 1942 was only 18 when he entered the army. He did what so many of the Greatest Generation did. He went to work to do his part in ridding the free world of tyranny. And when the job was done, he came home satisfied that his work was complete.

And once he came home Dan continued to live that same imaginative life that he led before. He built his own plane, served as a police officer, worked as a railroad dispatcher, and raised a beautiful family of children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, all of whom he was proud of. But Dan remained characteristically humble about it all.

Dan, from all of us, thank you for being there when the world needed you most. It’s our job now to pay your life forward not only in our words but in our lives. And if we can live half the life you did and have such an impact on others, each of us will have achieved our own small victory.

We love you, Sir! We know that you are now walking in a greater light. 

All The Way.

Photo, Dan McBride at our home at Frederick Army Air Field/KFDR, holding a picture of himself from his war years. By Gary Daniels #GreatestGeneration #Airborne #AATW 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault)

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Elizabeth L. Remba Gardner, of Rockford, Illinois, Class 43-W-6 WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilot) at the controls of a Martin B-26 'Marauder' medium bomber. Harlingen Army Air Field, Texas. 1943 (Aged 22)

About Me and My Experiences
"My name is Elizabeth L. Gardner, or for short, Libby Gardner. I am a pilot for the Women Aircraft Service Planes. a.k.a. WASP, which is considered a civil service. Before the war, I was a housewife and a mother who stayed home to take care of my family. I was called to duty when the war started to learn how to test planes, instruct pilots, tow targets used for anti-aircraft artillery practice, and assemble planes. I was grateful for the opportunity because it made my childhood dreams of flying and fascinations with planes a reality. I work 7 days out of the week and some of those days happen to be better than others. When I first started learning, I was eager and nervous and also had two days of training under Lieutenant Col. Paul Tibbets who later commanded the B-29 that dropped the first atom bomb on Hiroshima. The training consisted of three phases; primary, basic, and advanced. On the days that we have check rides, a lot of pressure can be put on us women, and we feel that we must make a name for ourselves in this industry. I had a check ride the other day, and I must say that things did not go so well for me that day. The man testing me was very quiet and sarcastic and did not give me much information or say a lot to let me know how I was doing. I would make mistakes as turning to far out or using too much rudder on the turns; I did my best to relax, but his sarcastic remarks did not make it easy and different items in my performance were still sloppy including my stalls. The only good thing that came from that test was my landing; it was possible that he would give me credit for that, but instead he stepped out of the airplane without saying a word about whether or not I passed. I held back my tears. The opportunity is wonderful, and I love doing this every day.

 

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You wouldn't know it to look at him, but the little old man in the center of this photo was one of the toughest Jarheads ever.

In 1942 when he was only 14, Jacklyn "Jack" Lucas enlisted in the Marine Corps after convincing the recruiter he was 17. 

Posted to a depot unit at Pearl Harbor, Jack was bored and wanted action, so in January of 1945, he rolled up a combat uniform under his arm, sneaked out of camp, and stowed away aboard a Naval Transport that was taking 1st Battalion, 26th Marines, 5th Marine Division to Iwo Jima.

Not knowing what to do with him, the Marine battalion commander busted Jack one rank, then assigned him as rifleman to C Company. A few days later, Jack turned 17.*

The day after landing on Iwo Jima, Jack dove on top of one Japanese grenade then pulled another beneath him. The blast ripped through his body, but saved his comrades.

It took 21 surgeries to save him, and for the rest of his life carried in his body more than 200 large pieces of shrapnel. 

On October 5th, 1945, Jack Lucas received the Medal of Honor from President Harry Truman in a ceremony on the White House lawn. He is the youngest Marine ever to receive the nation's highest honor. 

He then returned to high school.... as a freshman.

After college, Jack entered the Army as a Captain in the 82nd Airborne, and survived a training jump in which neither his main chute nor his reserve chute opened.

Two years before he died in 2008, Jack was honored by the Commandant of the Marine Corps, General Michael W. Hagee, who presented him with a Medal of Honor ceremonial flag at the Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C. 

It was during that ceremony that this photo was taken.

Semper Fidelis.

* Although the claim often is made that he actually was only 15, every official document (including his obituary) I've been able to locate puts his d.o.b. as 2/14/1928, which would have made him 17 in 1945. If someone has a primary-source document with a different d.o.b., please send it to me.

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Rare photo of the man who is believed to be the deadliest sniper of the Vietnam war Adelbert Waldron:

During his single deployment in Vietnam, Staff Sergeant Adelbert F. Waldron III made 109 confirmed kills in just six months, making him the most lethal sniper in the history of the U.S. Army.

Adelbert Waldron preferred working in the shadows. During the Vietnam War, he became the conflict’s most prolific sniper while fighting in the dense jungle as a sergeant in the U.S. Army. And after returning home, he didn’t discuss his record-breaking 109 kills.

Though snipers generally don’t brag about their records, some, like Chuck Mawhinney and Carlos Hathcock — both Marines — have become well-known for their combat records. Waldron, on the other hand, quietly returned home in 1969 and remained mum about his service for the rest of his life.

But his military achievements speak for themselves. He had 109 confirmed kills, making him the deadliest sniper in the history of the U.S. Army. And he finished the war with two Distinguished Service Crosses, three Bronze Stars, one Silver Star, and a Presidential Unit Citation.

And until 2011, when Navy SEAL Chris Kyle eclipsed his record, Adelbert “Bert” Waldron was the deadliest American sniper who had ever lived.

Adelbert Waldron’s Path To Vietnam
Adelbert F. Waldron III developed his shooting skills at a young age. Born on March 14, 1933, in Syracuse, New York, Waldron dealt with his parent’s divorce and subsequent remarriages by hunting in the woods around nearby Baldwinsville.
“[Bert] always told me how lonely he was as a child,” his ex-wife, Betty, told author Paul Kirchner. “He was so unhappy in his home life that he spent all his time hunting in the woods… I’m sure that’s when he learned his marksmanship. He could mimic wild animal sounds perfectly.”

But Waldron didn’t spend all his time alone. By the time he was 23, he’d married three times. And in 1953, Waldron escaped his solitary existence for good by enlisting in the U.S. Navy, where he served in the Korean War.
Waldron spent 12 years with the Navy, serving in the Korean War, eventually becoming a petty officer second class before accepting a discharge in 1965. But he seemed restless in civilian life. Less than three years later — and with war brewing in Vietnam — the 35-year-old enlisted in the U.S. Army.

Attached to Company B, 3rd Battalion, 60th Infantry Regiment of the 9th Infantry Division, Sgt. Adelbert Waldron trained in Fort Benning, Georgia, and shipped out for Vietnam in November 1968.

How Adelbert Waldron Became Vietnam’s Deadliest Sniper
Upon his arrival in Vietnam, Adelbert Waldron learned how to be a sniper at the Army Marksmanship Unit. He then accompanied his unit deep into the dangerous Mekong Delta — a labyrinth of streams, canals, and rice paddies — and quickly proved his mettle as a marksman.

When Waldron and his unit came under attack by the Viet Cong on Jan. 19, 1969, the newly-trained sniper sprang into action.
“While his company was being resupplied near Ap Hoa, Kien Hoa Province, approximately forty Viet Cong unleashed a heavy barrage of small arms and automatic weapons fire,” explained Waldron’s commendation for the Distinguished Service Cross award.
“Courageously exposing himself to the fusillade, Sergeant Waldron killed a number of the aggressors and was instrumental in forcing them to break contact.”

Three days later, on Jan. 22, Waldron dignified himself again. That night, he suddenly spotted Viet Cong activity. So Waldron aimed — and fired.
“Disregarding his own safety, Specialist Waldron courageously engaged the enemy for over three hours before his position was detected and he was forced to withdraw from the area,” his commendation for the Silver Star award said.
“As a result of his heroic acts, eleven enemy were mortally wounded.”

Waldron shone as a sniper again and again. On Jan. 30, he took out eight Viet Cong fighters with eight shots — from 500 yards away and at night. On Feb. 3, he killed six Viet Cong who’d attempted to outflank American troops. And on Feb. 14, Viet Cong fighters shot at by Waldron withdrew in confusion, unsure how many shooters were crouched in the jungle.
But Adelbert Waldron’s most famous moment as a sniper came on Feb. 26. Then, while patrolling the Mekong river in a Tango boat, Waldron and his fellow soldiers suddenly encountered sniper fire from the shore. As his commanding officer, Major General Julian Ewell, recalled it:
“While everyone else on board strained to find the antagonist, who was firing from the shoreline over 900 meters away, Sergeant Waldron took up his sniper rifle and picked off the Viet Cong out of the top of a coconut tree with one shot… such was the capability of our best sniper.”

His fellow soldiers soon dubbed Waldron “Daniel Boone” after the famous frontiersman. But Waldron had more advanced weaponry than Boone did. He favored an XM21 rifle that was 44 inches long, weighed about 12 pounds, and had a range of 900 yards (as Waldron proved).

By the time his tour in Vietnam ended and he shipped home on July 21, 1969, Waldron had 109 confirmed kills in just eight months. That made him the deadliest American sniper of all time, a record he’d keep until the Iraq War.

But Adelbert Waldron never bragged about his record as a sniper. Indeed, he rarely spoke publicly at all. He spent the next few decades of his life living as he always had – in the shadows.
The Legacy Of The Deadliest Sniper In The U.S. Army
Following his service in Vietnam, Adelbert Waldron returned to civilian life. But though he was honored with two Distinguished Service Crosses, three Bronze Stars, one Silver Star, and a Presidential Unit Citation, his transition from war proved rocky.

“Bert was a wonderful soldier,” his ex-wife, Betty, said. “He loved his country, he would have died for this country, but he had a lot of problems as a human being.”
He divorced, remarried, and divorced again. Meanwhile, Waldron worked as an instructor at the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit before taking a job as an instructor with Mitchel WerBell III’s Cobray International school, a mercenary, firearms engineer, and former CIA operative.

Waldron toiled in quiet obscurity, never seeking fame for his record-breaking service as a sniper. When he died to little fanfare of a heart attack on Oct. 18, 1995, Waldron was still the most prolific sniper in American history — besting better-known snipers like Carlos Hathcock and Chuck Mawhinney.
He kept that record until 2011. Then, Iraq War veteran Chris Kyle wrote in his book American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History, that the Navy credited him with 160 confirmed kills.
That number — and Kyle allegedly had even more unconfirmed kills — broke Waldron’s decades-old record.

In the end, many details of Adelbert Waldron’s service remain lost to time. He never gave interviews or wrote books. Waldron never publicly recalled how it felt to kill or how he dealt with the terror and glory of warfare. His record — his confirmed kills and awards — must speak for themselves.
As his Silver Star award states: “Sergeant Waldron’s extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the Military Service and reflects great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.”

The Giant Killer book & page honors these war heroes the book details the incredible life of the smallest soldier, Green Beret Captain Richard Flaherty along with the harrowing stories from the men of the 101st Airborne in Vietnam. The Giant Killer FB page honors these incredible war heroes making sure their stories of valor and sacrifice are never forgotten. God Bless our Vets! Available now on Amazon & Walmart.

Story By Kaleena Fraga

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