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Monday, May 30, 2011

“Tours of Duty: Carroll County MD and the Vietnam War” By Gary D. Jestes and Jay A. Graybeal



“Tours of Duty: Carroll County MD and the Vietnam War” By Gary D. Jestes and Jay A. Graybeal.

“Tours of Duty: Carroll County and the Vietnam War”

By Gary D. Jestes and Jay A. Graybeal.

The authors present the stories of Carroll County’s unsung heroes who served their country during the Vietnam War.  Includes biographical sketches, soldiers’ letters, a roster of servicemen, a bibliography of contemporary newspaper articles about the war.  $29






Historical Society of Carroll County
210 East Main Street, Westminster MD 21157
(410) 848-6494


About the book – and the authors, Jay Graybeal and Gary Jestes:

On Wednesday, November 12, 2008, Carroll County Times - http://www.carrollcountytimes.com/ - writer, Carrie Ann Knauer wrote:

Historian shares Carroll County Vietnam stories

In researching for a book on Carroll County’s Vietnam veterans, Jay Graybeal and Gary Jestes found a wealth of material in local newspaper archives and by collecting letters sent between soldiers and their loved ones.

They learned about Lt. Col. Charles I. Miller, who was one of the first Americans stationed in Vietnam, and was in fact part of the team to brief Gen. William Westmoreland, who in June 1964 was appointed the senior military commander of the United States’ armed forces in Vietnam, when he arrived in country.

They interviewed Sgt. Jerry Barnes, who told a story of hearing a scream from the cook one night in the camp and discovered a cobra in the kitchen ready to strike. Barnes, Carroll’s state’s attorney, said he pulled out his M16 without hesitation and shot the snake, refrigerator, stove and about everything else in the kitchen, except the cook, Graybeal said.

They read the stories in Carroll newspapers about the war and the reactions from residents on whether demonstrations were an appropriate way of showing dissatisfaction with American forces’ participation in the conflict.

Graybeal shared these stories Tuesday at the Historical Society of Carroll County’s Box Lunch Talk. Jestes, who was also scheduled to speak Tuesday, was unable to attend because of illness, Graybeal said.

Timmi Pierce, executive director of the Historical Society, said it was fitting to have a talk on the Vietnam veterans Tuesday because Veterans Day fell on the normally scheduled day for the lunch talk. Pierce used the opportunity to recognize the dozen or so veterans in attendance at the talk, including four Vietnam veterans.

“It’s fitting that we’re in this building [American Legion Post 31], which honors veterans seven days a week,” Graybeal said during his opening.

Graybeal is the chief curator of the Army Heritage and Education Center in Carlisle, Pa., where he has been working on the center’s Vietnam collection, which will be dedicated Friday, he said.

Jestes and Graybeal started the research for their book, “Tours of Duty: Carroll County and the Vietnam War,” when Graybeal was still at the Historical Society. They spent more than 10 years on the research and writing before it was published last year, he said.

“We joke it took longer for us to write the book than to fight the war,” Graybeal said.

Graybeal gave a general overview of the timeline of the Vietnam War, then listed some of the Carroll servicemen who are highlighted in the book, including Rick Will Sr., Sgt. Gary Hammett, Capt. Richard N. Dixon and Maj. Harold J. Robertson. Several heads in the audience nodded in recognition of the names and faces being broadcast on the projector screen.

“It’s wrenching to read, but it’s important to see the sacrifices that were made,” Graybeal said of the book.

There was so much dissension surrounding the Vietnam War, and a lot of myths were spun out of that dissension, Graybeal said. He read from a list of exposed myths about Vietnam veterans, which showed that Vietnam soldiers were not as young, uneducated, underprivileged or unwilling as people believed. For example, while the draft got so much attention during the Vietnam War, only one-third of the soldiers to serve in Vietnam were drafted, and two-thirds were voluntary recruits, Graybeal said. Those statistics are the opposite of World War II’s, he said.

Despite people’s personal views, no one can deny the way the war affected the nation and its future, Graybeal said.

“It forever changed our views as Americans of our role in the world,” he said.


[20110525 HSCC book order form] [20071108 Tours of Duty] [20110524 sdosm Tours of Duty Carroll County and the Vietnam War] [20110524 sdosm Tours of Duty CC and Vietnam War wpics]


Vietnam, History, military, Memorial Day, Historical Society of Carroll County, Carrie Ann Knauer, Jay Graybeal  Labels: Annual Memorial Day, Dayhoff writing essays Vietnam, Military Vietnam, Military Vietnam Byers James N,Military Vietnam CC Memorial

Related: Memorial Day: Honoring the sacrifice of Staff Sgt. James Norman Byers  By Kevin Dayhoff Wednesday, May 25, 2011 http://www.thetentacle.com/ShowArticle.cfm?mydocid=4418






[20110530 CB 2b asleep Memorial Day]




“Tours of Duty: Carroll County MD and the Vietnam War” By Gary D. Jestes and Jay A. Graybeal.

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