101st. Airborne

How about a service for Darrell "Shifty" Powers.
By: The Master's Table


This story is especially close to my heart as I also served with the 101st. Airborne in Vietnam. I was with the 2/501 division "C" Charlie Co. 3rd. Platoon (1968-1969) and fought in four major campaigns as well as many search and destroy missions and we blocked the North Vietnam Army in the A Shau Valley in 1969. We came home as villains but we fought with pride and we live knowing we helped many Vietnamese people during this unwanted and unpopular war.

for My Story click on this link.... http://www.vietvet.org/tyoungblood_1.htm

Author and steward of The Master's table
Timothy M. Youngblood

Shifty volunteered for the airborne in WWII and served with Easy Company of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, part of the 101st Airborne Infantry. If you've seen Band of Brothers on HBO or the History Channel, you know Shifty. His character appears in all 10 episodes, and Shifty himself is interviewed in several of them.

I met Shifty in the Philadelphia airport several years ago. I didn't know who he was at the time. I just saw an elderly gentleman having trouble reading his ticket. I offered to help, assured him that he was at the right gate, and noticed the "Screaming Eagle", the symbol of the 101st Airborne, on his hat. Making conversation, I asked him if he'd been in the 101st Airborne or if his son was serving. He said quietly that he had been in the 101st. I thanked him for his service, then asked him when he served, and how many jumps he made. Quietly and humbly, he said "Well, I guess I signed up in 1941 or so, and was in until sometime in 1945…"at which point my heart skipped. At that point, again, very humbly, he said "I made the 5 training jumps at Toccoa, and then jumped into Normandy…do you know where Normandy is?" At this point my heart stopped. I told him yes, I know exactly where Normandy was, and I know what D-Day was. At that point he said "I also made a second jump into Holland , into Arnhem ." I was standing with a genuine war hero… and then I realized that it was June, just after the anniversary of D-Day.

I asked Shifty if he was on his way back from France , and he said "Yes. And it's real sad because these days so few of the guys are left, and those that are, lots of them can't make the trip." My heart was in my throat and I didn't know what to say. I helped Shifty get onto the plane and then realized he was back in Coach, while I was in First Class. I sent the flight attendant back to get him and said that I wanted to switch seats. When Shifty came forward, I got up out of the seat and told him I wanted him to have it, that I'd take his in coach. He said "No, son, you enjoy that seat. Just knowing that there are still some who remember what we did and still care is enough to make an old man very happy." His eyes were filling up as he said it. And mine are brimming up now as I write this.

Shifty died on June 17 after fighting cancer.

There was no parade.

No big event in Staples Center .

No wall to wall back to back 24x7 news coverage.

No weeping fans on television.

And that's not right.

Let's give Shifty his own Memorial Service, online, in our own quiet way. Please forward this email to everyone you know. Especially to the veterans.

Rest in peace, Shifty.

"A nation without heroes is nothing."

Roberto Clemente:

Whom is to blame for the sacrifice for freedom?

A mother asked a President... "Why did my son have to die in Iraq ?"

A mother asked a President... "Why did my son have to die in Saudi Arabia ?"

A mother asked a President... "Why did my son have to die in Kuwait?"

Another mother asked a President... "Why did my son have to die in Vietnam?"

Another mother asked a President... "Why did my son have to die in Korea?"

Another mother asked a President... "Why did my son have to die on Iwo Jima?"

Another mother asked a President... "Why did my son have to die on a battlefield in France?"

Yet another mother asked a President... "Why did my son have to die at Gettysburg?"

And yet another mother asked a President ... "Why did my son have to die on a frozen field near Valley Forge?"

The answer is the same... "So that others may have life and dwell in peace, happiness, and freedom."

This was emailed to me with no author. I thought the magnitude and the simplicity were awesome.

Whom is to blame for the sacrifice for freedom? Short answer...The enemys of Freedom!


The below information is from…Statistics about the Vietnam War

Restraining the military in Vietnam in hind sight probably prevented a nuclear war with China or Russia. The Vietnam War was shortly after China got involved in the Korean war, the time of the Cuban missile crisis, Soviet aggression in Eastern Europe and the proliferation of nuclear bombs. In all, a very scary time for our country.

Here are statistics from the Combat Area Casualty File (CACF) as of November 1993. The CACF is the basis for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (The Wall):
Average age of 58,148 killed in Vietnam was 23.11 years. (Although 58,169 names are in the Nov. 93 database, only 58,148 have both event date and birth date. Event date is used instead of declared dead date for some of those who were listed as missing in action) [CACF]

Deaths Average Age
Total 58,148 23.11 years
Enlisted 50,274 22.37 years
Officers 6,598 28.43 years
Warrants 1,276 24.73 years
E1 525 20.34 years
11B MOS 18,465 22.55 years
Five men killed in Vietnam were only 16 years old. [CACF]
The oldest man killed was 62 years old. [CACF]
11,465 KIAs were less than 20 years old. [CACF]
Myth: The average age of an infantryman fighting in Vietnam was 19.
Assuming KIAs accurately represented age groups serving in Vietnam, the average age of an infantryman (MOS 11B) serving in Vietnam to be 19 years old is a myth, it is actually 22. None of the enlisted grades have an average age of less than 20. [CACF] The average man who fought in World War II was 26 years of age. [Westmoreland]

You can access the site here… http://www.vhfcn.org/stat.html

The official total number is 58,148 killed during service. An additional 114
were captured and died in captivity.

In the 5 years following the war, the suicide rate of veterans was 1.7
times the non-Veteran population, yielding an estimate of 9,000
suicides as a direct result of the war. After 5 years, suicide rates
fall back in line with the general population.

(Testimony by Dr. Houk, Oversight on Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder,
14 July 1988 page 17, Hearing before the Committee on Veterans'
Affairs United States Senate one hundredth Congress second session.
Also "Estimating the Number of Suicides Among Vietnam Veterans" (Am J
Psychiatry 147, 6 June 1990 pages 772-776)

A total of approximately 67,000 Americans.


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