Thursday, July 9, 2009

More Paint, Less A/C and getting down to work at Nha Trang July 1969

Just a short one today....

I put in another 4 to 5 hours painting yesterday...did the west side of the Garage, and painted the white edges on the "kitchen" part of the back of the house, that alone took at least 2 hours, and it was a small bit, but had to be done. Today, with an American Legion baseball game at Van Wert tonight, I will do some more trim, this time the beige I said, it will be a long paint 5 hours, you drink a six pack and smoke a cigar that evening in the back yard admiring your work....that is my plan.

Meanwhile the high yesterday never got out of the 70s, so another day saving the A/C and keeping the Skyrocketing Utility Bills at dawns cloudy, but the rain missed us again, the yard is pretty much in it's annual "no mow in July mode".

The American Legion game tonight, will mark the end of 3 straight days of no baseball, the longest stretch since the handful of days between Spring District and Regional action back in mid and late May....a double header at the ACME District on Saturday, and then some more rest...I have to say, I am glad to see it wind down. Last season I did about 85 games. This year, counting scrimmages, regular High School season, Tournaments, and the summer games, it appears I will have done at least 100 by the end of July...plenty of work for this 60 year old body. Then a couple of weeks off, and it's on to football season.

Nha Trang July 1969___Getting to work

By the time I had been at Nha Trang a week, I was fully into the everyday workings of Law Enforcement...those workings included how to hide from the brass when I was on patrol duty, when to call for a latrine break mid mornings, and how to BS with the local kids that hung around our gate shacks, and which parts of the C-Rations to give those kids. They always appreciated whatever leftovers we had. One thing about the kids(from those just learning to walk to the mid teens), they may not have liked all of us GI types, but they at least faked it, because they knew, if they even pretended to like us...we would usually give them a snack or something. Sky Cops, for the most part, were softies, at least for the kids.

The first guys I remember working with{those that I can remember their names and faces} were Marcos Payen and Harry Bevan:

Marc was from El Paso and has been a federal agent for many years down on that border city...Harry went home after the Air Force to become a Philadelphia cop, and worked with the K-9s at the Philly Airport, although not a dog handler when in Nam.

I also met guys like Bruce Thompson, Tony Niemotka(who sent me yesterday's firing range photos}, Johnny Claflin...and my supervisors, Phil Lange and Melvin Sloan. Tom Johnson was there at the same time as well, and every once in awhile another name and/or face pops into my brain...amazing that 40 years later, that I can have a good amount of recall on those I knew for only a short time. Of course many of us have hooked up via the VSPA, otherwise these names and some of the memories may have been lost forever. Phil just passed on, and I have yet to find Melvin Sloan{who would be in his mid 70s I am guessing}...but in this large world, the amount of old contacts is surpassed only by the number of new friends I have made through the Vietnam Security Police Association:

Off to a few hours of painting the trim, shower, baseball, and maybe a few beers to top off the evening....

back later>>>>
photos--Szack and Beven, Szack(with the gun) passed away a few years ago, Harry Beven is alive and well and on a vacation cruise to Alaska with his wife Anna, whom he married before heading to Vietnam. Horse play was something we did, and probably shouldn't have, especially with the weapons, but we lost nobody despite it all....The second photo is me on Jeep Patrol, and yes, even though it's hard to tell, I was pointing my .38 Special towards the camera{amazing we all survived our tours}, and #3 is Marc Payan, QC Sgt Ky of the South Vietnam Army, and Harry Bevan..maining the main gate at Nha Trang, probably the one place a Sky Cop couldn't screw around, too many brass passing through and eyeballing you. This LE Post you were in the view of just about everybody who passed through Nha Trang.


FHB said...

Great pictures. I wonder what those kids would say now. It'd be interesting to find out what happened to them.

PRH....... said...

Interesting question Jeff....hopefully they were not totally brainwashed by the freaking Reds from the NVN.