War and History Fiction posted December 15, 2017


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A Day's Work in Viet Nam

My Number Wasn't Up

by Daniel Wood


The author has placed a warning on this post for violence.
The author has placed a warning on this post for language.

"How many are going in this time?"

"Four," replied Sarge. "You'll be with me on the second chopper."

"That's good! At least we're not first or last."

The approach is always between two steep mountainsides. This keeps us out of sight until the last possible minute. Charlie is always down there somewhere. Their normal routine is to shoot down the first chopper in and close off the gap so no more choppers can enter. Or, they will wait until the last chopper comes in. Shooting it down traps everyone that's already landed. Then they pick us off like ducks at a shooting gallery. These raids are so much of a lose-lose situation. They suck big-time.

The first chopper makes it in with no gunfire. For a brief second, I'm relieved. I remain tense. This thing is far from over. Then, machine gun fire, too-too-too-too-too. "SHIT!" I yelled. BOOM! I'm thrown on the floor of the chopper. Somebody falls on top of me.

"WE'RE GOING DOWN!" yells Sarge. "BRACE YOURSELF AND PREPARE TO ENGAGE!"

The chopper spins out of control and drops fast. We hit a few tree tops on the way in, slowing our impact speed just enough not to kill us all as we land. The sound of impact is indescribable. Dirt is flying everywhere. Bodies bounce about like rag dolls. Machine gun fire is constant, bullets piercing the body of the chopper. WHUMP, I hear, as the Sarge falls forward. The back of his head has a big hole in it.

I yell, "TAKE COVER!", and jump from the chopper into a thicket. Tom-tom-tom-tom comes from beside me. It's Frank returning fire on Charlie. I join in and fire across the opening. Then BOOM! and a big ball of fire rises from where the first chopper landed.

"Frank, how much ammo you got?"

"I'm down to one magazine."

"Cover me Frank, I'm going after the M-60."

I jumped from the thicket and back into the chopper. The chopper rested at about a 45-degree angle, with the pilot's side facing the ground. The M-60 machine gun was the highest point of the chopper. Without giving any thought to the danger, I climbed up, swung the gun around and opened fire. I started firing into the brush along the edge of the clearing. I started to one side and swept across, and then back. I didn't stop until the gun was empty.

"Frank!" I waited. "Frank!"

BOOM! The lights went out. I woke two days later in the hospital. The air force had saved the day.



War writing prompt entry
Writing Prompt
Write a story where a character is in war or is about to be in war. Fiction or non-fiction.

Recognized


I've listed this as fiction although much of this story comes straight from the mouth of my friend who lived through a similar event. He was awarded the Silver Star for his bravery. He was the only survivor.
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© Copyright 2018. Daniel Wood All rights reserved.
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