Honor the Warrior: The United States Marine Corps in Vietnam.
William L. Myers Redoubt Press, 183 Steiner Road, # 117, Lafayette, LA 70508-6000
294 pages, map, appendices, hardcover, $25.00 plus S & H.
This is an anthology of what the author believes is the finest writing
about the experiences of Marines in Vietnam. After reading his
selections I agree, it certainly is what he claims for it. It is chock
full of splendid reading material for that Marine interested in what the "older generation” went through. And, aren't we all? Myers has not only
managed to gather together seventeen incredibly readable personal accounts but he has personally added a massive amount of additional
material that we all want but seldom see in any other gathering of this type. Some anthologies do have important annotations but most are
concerned more with units and problems, but not so much about people.
And, in the opinion of many, people are what war is all about. His
research about the people in each chapter adds greatly to what one must know about the action described. It is evident that the author has a
firm grip on the subject matter. Just his annotations alone are well worth the price of the book. I shudder when I think of the amount of
research he went through to gather all this data in one book. An extraordinary effort and believe me well worth your serious
consideration and it is very reasonably priced.
Myers is widely known as a profound and erudite bookish sort who has a marvelous writing style of his own. A retired high school teacher, and
also a former football coach, "Billy" has been able to convey what it was like for those who served during that horrible conflict. The author
is, and for many years has been, a collector of important Vietnam material. This prodigious effort includes much of what he has collected
and digested. When you read his book you will realize that he is not only a Marine veteran but has never lost his pride in that service. Now,
thirty years after the fact, these men are starting to realize that they were the heroes, not the unwashed mob that tried to debase them while
they served their country. It was a terrible war for all concerned and, in this writer’s opinion, it should have never happened. But it did and
it is about time the veterans finally had their "day" and say. Bill Myers makes his point, very well indeed.
The book is very well presented. The dust jacket is about as "pretty" as one will find-as decorous as that beauty by John W. Thomason, Jr. for
Salt Winds-and Gobi Dust. Billy has pictured the symbols of his
treasured relationship as a Marine, including his "dog tags." In addition, Billy has provided us with, not only a complete listing of
"winners” of the Navy Cross but those equally brave Marines who were awarded the Silver Star. Where possible, and in most instances, he has
included the name, service number, unit, date for the award, age of the individual and even his hometown address. You "can't hardly get that
kind of data” anywhere, which includes those men who we could never do without-the "Docs." If you ever cut yourself on a C-ration can, Doc was
there. And for worse times, as some of you already know. This book is a treasure for everyone and I expect it will get widespread reading from
all those who appreciate what our lads did thirty some years ago.
George B. Clark
Author of Devil Dogs: Fighting Marines of World War I