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humpin a RicePaddy Specialist Four Mike Laley, his cameras grimy from the
rice paddies. This war was different than any other
fought by Americans. The enemy was different, and
the terrain was different. The combat
photographer's job was to show it.
The 9th Division operated in Vietnamís Mekong Delta, a river highway interspersed with thousands of smaller rivers, streams, canals, fertile rice paddies. Used for centuries as a safe haven for pirates, smugglers, bandits, and recently the Viet Cong, troop movement is only slightly difficult in the dry season...then come the torrential monsoon rains that inundate the swollen land like a sponge.
DeltaMud
humpin a RicePaddy His cameras covered with mud, Specialist Five John Gardenhire.Ē


Vietnam combat photographers show the men, the equipment, the terrain, the uniqueness of waging war in the watery swamps of trackless Mekong Delta mud, showing the face of life and death. The pictures and the words help put that face with real heart and soul on Vietnam. Combat photographers shoot for history and posterity, not body count, the choice to shoot with M-16 or shoot a camera, often a difficult one.

humpin a RicePaddy



3guns Mekong Delta Riverine 3guns

by Gary Jacobson

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echo riverine
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Way down on the Mekong Delta Riverine
Patrol some of the toughest grunts
The Namís ever seen
Half man
Half alligator
Chew Vietcong up and spitím out later
riverinecanal
Rodney Roat (left) died this night
Doing the wars blazing bullet sashay
I can't help but wonder...
Is this judgment day?
Thrust into the Delta, a dominant,
Malevolent,
VC haven,
Providing sanctuary for the cowardly craven,
To mount guerrilla attacks on Saigon,
From safe refuge in the muddy Mekong.
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infantryWaterSkimmer
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Riverine infantrymen slog
Thru the relentless bog
Plowing thru eight foot elephant grass,
Quite a gas.
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MuddyGrunt
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Treading in the waist deep swamp,
Even Riverine men waist deep in mud
Lose a lot of stateside pomp.
Clinging leeches
On foolish infantrymen feeds,
In rotting vegetation on The Plain Of Reeds.
Humping through the muddy slime,
Trampling where angels fear to tred most of the time.
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NestinNDelta
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Trooping thru waist deep mud like a sponge,
Sucking,
Clamping,
Adhering,
To infantrymen that thru the mire lunge.
Where everything smells rancid like grunge.
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riverPatrol
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In the Delta lies the imposing Rung Sat,
The ďEverglades of Vietnam,"
Where Riverine men do combat.
In a place so unfriendly with a smell all its own,
An inpenetrable Mangrove swamp overgrown.
Rung Sat farmers live on mounds piled high,
VC live in plank houses in trees high and dry.
No dry land in the Rung Sat exists
In the foul perfumed mysts.
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Firefight
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Every step taken is a battle with elements.
For Riverine grunts
The only dry ground runs beside rice paddy dikes,
But discourteous VC
Malevolent to the core
Booby trap the rice paddy dikes.
Completely discouraging movement
On high ground.
So Riverine troops must
In sticky mud pound.
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StreamCrossing
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Armored troop carriers and helicopters
Funnel infantrymen into boggy Delta barriers
To attack VC strongholds along tree lined rivers.
Choppers, hovering over the spongy earth bestow
Troops leaping into mucky mire below.
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1stLieutenant
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Way down on the Mekong Delta Riverine
Patrol some of the toughest grunts
The Namís ever seen
Half man
Half alligator
Chew Vietcong up and spitím out later
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twilightPatrol
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The Riverine built a base camp
On VC infested Delta bog damp
From the Mekong the soldiers dredged
Two million cubic feet of fill pumped
To raise the camp high onto a bar of sand
Ten feet by 600 acres on dry land.
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Mekong Delta Basecamp
So don't matter where the Vietcong hide,
Riverine men will find them
Give them a M-16 ride,
Send them hot-footing back up north,
Back where they belong to hanoi
For all their miserable hides are worth.
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StreamCrossing
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Way down on the Mekong Delta Riverine
Patrol some of the toughest grunts
The Namís ever seen
Half man
Half alligator
Chew Vietcong up and spitím out later
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riverinedeath
Ben Herrera was killed by a sniper 8/10/68
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riverine1.jpg
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riverineMemorial
SGT SHERWOOD REYNOLDS, 21, Single, PRINCE FREDERICK, MARYLAND, KIA Feb 26,1968** SP4 ROSCOE EDWARD BRYANT, 20, single, BALTIMORE, MARYLAND, KIA Feb 27, 1968** PFC DOUGLAS JOHN BURDICK, 20, Single, DETROIT, MICHIGAN, KIA Feb 27, 1968** SFC FERNANDO MENDOZA QUINTERO, 37, Married, GLOBE, ARIZONA, KIA Feb 27, 1968** PFC RODNEY ALLEN ROAT, 20, Married, FLINT, MICHIGAN, KIA Feb 27, 1968** PFC GEORGE EDGAR SPECK, 21, Single, RAVENNA, OHIO, KIA Feb 27, 1968** SGT JOSE RAFAEL TAVAREZ 21, Single, NEW YORK, NEW YORK, KIA Feb 27, 1968
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