**John Esteban now**
I was born in Sunny San Andreas. Winter in the yard of the 41st. Just a few days after my birthday, the Japanese - damned narrow-eyed - bombed pearl Harbor. My father goes to the front, but then I still didn't understand it. Only after a couple or three years my mother told me that father went on a trip around the world, and died in the battle for Guadalcanal.
School this reason some classmates I was constantly teased and harassed, were called orphan and asked mocking questions like: "where's your dad?" and so on, often provoking me into a fight.
It takes ten years. I graduate high school. Mom is trying to dissuade from service fear of losing me, but I don't see to anywhere else. I have no inclinations to science, no love of art. The only thing I had was a great level of fitness. All the schools were active in agitating for recording in different types of troops, after school volunteers. At that moment, my eyes fell on two options: the armored forces or the Marine Corps, from which I chose the former. Already by 1960 I was attached to the Second Armored division, 42nd regiment, more precisely, its remnants. These guys had a nice ride around the world in the past: from North Africa in 42 to France and Belgium in 45.
1963. On the news I learn that President Kennedy was killed. Killed a former marine. After just a couple of days after that, the ILC went a famous saying: "Lee Oswald is the only ex-marine".
1965. Vietnam is in flames, our regiment is sent there. To this day, was just a little local skirmishes with the enemy, in which we, as a rule, emerged victorious. But here it is, the cancer in my life day.
April 12, 1966, our platoon is given the task to move to the neighboring village to the North of da Nang. From the headquarters it was rumored that there a chink notably pinned the infantry company and our task was to provide them with support, because the village was strategically important to them. By the way, the village was a few miles away, respectively, "journey" was going to be short-lived.
What could go wrong? "Ha!" - smiled on us Lady luck, after the first tank in the column smashed by anti-tank mine and the platoon stopped. For a moment it was dead quiet, everyone just watched as jumping out of a burning tank burning as crew members, which fall to the ground and ride on it, vainly trying to extinguish clothes on. From the picture we all fell into a stupor, and then dead silence was interrupted by the cry of a Sergeant Dickens, whose voice gradually voices were drowned under the sound of machine guns rechargeable. The explosion of anti-personnel mines was the signal for the attack of the enemy - gooks have got to be everywhere, but we only tried in vain to fight back. Our platoon remained fifteen people, the commander and his Deputy, whose charred bodies, I watched in utter horror, killing one of the first.
After a couple of seconds in front of me emptiness, as if someone turned off the lights, and then I see my girl Jessica, she happily walking around the Pershing Square, holding hands and eating ice cream, and for this I feel a strong slap:
"-Esteban! Private! Wake up!" - the voice of Sergeant Dickens brought me back to "this" world -" This one's still alive! Hey, Harrison, I hear, "birds" is on the way, hold on, private!" I with half-closed eyes looking in front of him, seeing as from everywhere climb the gooks as our guys shoot at him, but I'm moving away and away from all that. I was dragged along the ground, taking away from this Hell, I can't feel my left foot. Desperately trying not to close his eyes, obediently carrying out orders Sergeant - "Don't fall asleep, soldier!", but it is not clear where to take the weakness, the weakness which I felt in every inch of his body, she poured me cut down mercilessly and without warning.
In a Saigon hospital I will say that the debris was a broken left knee, and it is not possible. I return home in a couple of months, with a purple heart on his chest. All the relatives because of false love for me and the reason "Well we are family" brought me to the prosthesis. Sometimes, sitting in front of a fireplace in your home, I remember that fight. After this long I cry to myself. Jess went to another after only a few months after my return. Ten years later I learned that she died from a drug overdose. Mother died just a year after my return.
Sometimes, however, I remember that fight with a broad smile. I remember the sound of "Huey", the one saving easy heat on his face and a bright orange flash in the clouded eyes - because after a couple of minutes down the road walked with Napalm. "Vietnam was the best story that happened to me in life" - it was with this in mind, I sometimes fall asleep in front of the fireplace and see the same dream, Sergeant Dickens and Lieutenant Woods, who were killed during the operation "TET" in' 68, dragged me away from this Hell, dragged and dragged, seemingly endlessly, but then I hear it - saving the sound of the blades ,"Huey" .((I don't know if i will actually continue doing this, but this could work for the moment ))