Sgt. Phat's Letter to Cpl. Smith

I have a letter written to me by a South Vietnamese Special Forces Sgt. from the base at Nam Dong and/or Ta Rau.   I have included a picture of him and his chargers just before we took them into the field on a patrol.  He is the tallest person with the helmet, second from the left.  He was amazed that we would treat him as an equal and our friend.  I ran into him a number of times at Nam Dong and Da Nang.  In his letter he refers to me as "Captain" and must have misinterpreted the abbreviation for Cpl. as Capt.

He really liked my German Luger which I carried in a shoulder holster.  I let him try it on and took his picture by the M60 in my plane.  I hope he made it through the attack at Nam Dong on July 5, 1964.

I retrieved the following  letter from a trunk in the attic, it says a lot about who we were when we were there.

Ta Rau  20 Mar 1964

Dear Captain Smith,

Late on helicrp I thought to much about your good heart and promised myself that I would show my thanks and hoped I did make aquaintance with you, but sometimes one big question come to my mind that was only Sargent and could not look you as my friend. ( however my friends who told me that American look every man as friends, did not care officers or first class, rich or poor so my letter will not be ashamed, is that right Sir?

My name is Phat , was in Vietnamese Special Forces. I train ( teach) right now; Strike Forces.

Please, you let me now about you, wealth, family, and write to me long and long.

I stop here with my best regards to you and to your family.


Submitted by:
    Warren R. Smith, former Cpl. USMC

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