Rick Holt's Adventures in Vietnam
Letters Home from Vietnam, 1971

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Da Nang
April 2, 1971
11:45 pm

Dear Folks,

Well, we finally got some mail today. A plane came up about 3 pm with the paymaster and our mail. Got 22 letters today. Got the same old $192 E-2 pay today. I guess they didn't get the PFC orders to finance in time. Either that or they didn't get them there at all. I'm going to wait a while before I send any of it home. I've got a few things I want to get. I'm going to have a pair of prescription sunglasses made. That costs about $15. I've got to get a $10 money order to pay for the USAFI course I'm going to take. Went to Base Education at Gunfighter Village this afternoon and got an application for the course. After looking over the selection I decided on Oceanography. It's a college level course, the only prerequisite was high school. All I've got to do is get the money order and mail in the application. I also owe Paulson $5 and Murphy gave me $5 to pay for the hooch maid. I want to get a fan too. So with all that deducted it leaves about $150. I guess I need about $100 to live on so I won't send anything home till the end of the month. I'll see what I've got left over.

When all this PFC and flight pay catches up with me I should get a real bundle. Sure hope that pay raise comes through.

Kelm came back up on that plane today. He said it has been really hot down south. 110 degrees. the other day. He said they were making up the paperwork for Army Commendation medals for all of us on this mission. Guess we may hear about that in the future.

Just thought of something. If you still have that little gadget that makes those plastic name tags I could use some for my camera and radio and a few other things.

When I said I don't like all the sweet stuff that doesn't include Reese peanut butter cups!

In the books in my room with all the newspaper clippings there is one clipping taken from "Direct Line" with an address where you can send to get information on the Appalachian Trail. It's either in the back of the one binder marked fishing or in the other one with all the miscellaneous stuff in it. Think one of you could look it up? I'd like to send away for the info so I can dream a little.

Here is a slide that Kelm took with his camera. It's at China Beach. That's Yesh in the background. He isn't with us any more. He went back to his unit for good. I don't know how the fingerprint got on it. I didn't have any luck trying to get it off.

I was going to get a haircut tomorrow, but Capt. Scriven told me today that I'd better get one so maybe I'll wait a while before I do.

Found out today that during that last rocket attack one actually did hit inside this compound. They had it cleaned up by the time I got up the next morning. It hit an antenna cable and knocked off communications for about two hours. They also took some sniper fire on the lower forty. I thought they sounded awful close by.

I don't know too much about Red Beach. Only saw it that one time. It's on an airstrip somewhere on the coast nearby.

Well, if you're really interested here is what I had for supper -- 2 pieces of chicken, a little bit soggy, some slices potatoes, chocolate ripple ice cream, four olives and a glass of water. The water around here is good. Doesn't taste any different than stateside water to me. Had the old standby of hot dogs, beans and potato chips for lunch of course.

There was a good band at the RPI tonight. It's been so long since I had a coke I drank six of them straight before I ran out of room. Also managed to squeeze in a RPI special along with the cokes.

Well, I guess if I read those letters over again tomorrow I'll find some more things to write about. But right now it's 1:30 am and time to take a shower and get some sleep


Capt. Scriven is a nut,
He thinks my hair I should cut.
What Capt. Scriven doesn't know
is to the barber I won't go!

I think I write good poetry!

(read the next letter home)