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From :    "Lonnie Wadsworth" <lonnie.wadsworth@windstream.net       

To   :    <jordanhappy1@netzero.net>

Subject    :    Guess what,I was there too!

Date :    Sun, Feb 15, 2009 07:42 PM

 

 

       Hey guy! I recognized many of these photos of Camp Red Ball. I was

assigned to the 38th BPO & lived in one of those hooches with the bottom sand

bagged. You might remember me, I was the Baptist preacher who conducted

services for the Protestants on Sunday mornings. I would go to the Catholic

orphanages during my off-duty hrs. & teach English to Vietnamese Catholic

nuns. It was my friend, Danny McClung, who came up with the idea of building the

chapel at Red Ball. I did some of the painting & some of the framing, but this

is the first time that I have seen photos of what happened to the chapel. You

might not remember this, but Danny named the chapel after a civilian

contractors son who was killed earlier in 'Nam. Danny was from Leighton, AL. &

I was from Birmingham, AL. We became friends at Ft. Riley, KS. & had our AIT at

Ft. Jackson, SC. together. Danny, died a few yrs. after coming back from Vietnam

from some strange illness (probably Agent Orange related).

I'm 62yrs. old now & living with my wife,Mary Ann in Springville, AL. Let me

hear from you! Maybe you might be able to tell me what happened to Camp Red

Ball after I left. I was wounded in action on the 2nd of Feb.'68 (Tet

Offensive)after a 10 month tour of duty & flown around the world before they

assigned me to Brooke Gen.Hosp. in Ft.Sam Houston, Tx. How could we ever forget

'68 TET!

--

 

From: lonnie.wadsworth@windstream.net

Sent: Tuesday, February 16, 2016 8:23 AM

 

This ought to bring back some memories of Camp Red Ball. The top left photo is

of our Senset (not sure of the spelling) Memorial Chapel. To the right is me with

one of the orphans that came to Red Ball for a Christmas program in ‘67. Bottom left

is of some of the guys from the 38th BPO sunbathing (you’ll recognize the shower

and latrine in the background) and my best friend, Danny McClung from Leighton, AL.

and Sgt. Dave Barde from Ariz., who later became permanent party with me at

Ft. Sam Houston, TX. I had been wounded during Tet of ‘68 and was already assigned to

Brooke Gen. Hospital.

 

From: lonnie.wadsworth@windstream.net

Sent: Tuesday, February 16, 2016 9:26 AM

 

Andy.......during my off-duty hours, I spent time at three different orphanages,

near Red Ball. Danny McClung, Lt. Gumsrud and myself would go to various ones at

different times. They were all Catholic orphanages, but the nuns were interested

in learning English and I would write to various churches, back in the states and

have clothing sent to us, to pass out to the orphans. I felt like a missionary,

even though I was only a licensed Baptist minister in Vietnam. I still have a

number of photos that were taken back then and have wondered over the years as to

what happened to those orphans. Wondered if many of them weren’t killed when the

North Vietnamese took over the country. The kids would rush me when I first walked

in and they wanted to feel the hair on my arms, like I was something from outer-space!

Stuff like that, you never forget. I have some very fond memories of those times

from April 1967 til Feb. 2, 1968. Then, it was over for me, after two operations,

then, on to Ft. Sam Houston, TX. as permanent party.