Never Without Heroes
Marine Third Reconnaissance Battalion in Vietnam, 1965-70
By Lawrence C. Jr Vetter
(Ballantine Books, Mass Market Paperback, 9780804108072, 384pp.)
Publication Date: June 30, 1996
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FOUR CONGRESSIONAL MEDALS OF HONOR,
THIRTEEN NAVAL CROSSES,
SEVENTY-TWO SILVER STARS . . .
In four and a half years in Vietnam, the Marines of the Third Reconnaissance Battalion repeatedly penetrated North Vietnamese and Vietcong sanctuaries by foot and by helicopter to find enemy forces, learn the enemy's intentions, and, when possible, bring deadly fire down on his head. Heavily armed, well-camouflaged teams of six and eight men daily exposed themselves to overwhelming enemy forces so that other Marines would have the information necessary to fight the war.
It's all here: grueling, tense, and deadly recon patrols; insertions directly into NVA basecamps; last-stand defenses in the wreckage of downed helicopters; pursuit by superior North Vietnamese forces; agonizing deaths of men who valiantly put their lives on the line.
NEVER WITHOUT HEROES is the first book to recount the story of a Marine reconnaissance battalion in Vietnam from the day of its arrival to its withdrawal. In Vietnam, Larry Vetter served as a platoon leader in Third Recon Battalion. He supplements his own recollections with Marine Corps records, exhaustive interviews with veterans, and correspondence to capture the bravery, and self-sacrifice of war.