Veteran Stories

Civil War 1862 Diary Union

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Sgt. Henry W. Tisdale enlisted in Company I, Thirty-Fifth Regiment,Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry on July 10, 1862 at the age of 25. Sgt. Tisdale kept a very detailed diary of his service from 1662 t0 1865. His son and his sons wife typed and bound the diary in 1926. Please click on the picture and you will see the diary.

Civil War 1861 Diary Confederate

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Pvt. L. Leon of the Charlotte Grays, Company C, First North Carolina Regiment, recounted his service in the Confederacy from 1861, and titled it "Diary of a Tar Heel Confederate Soldier. Put. Leon copyright and published the diary in 1913. Please click on the picture and you can read his story.

Spanish-American War Diary 1898

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Pvt. George Edgar Cripps of the 34th Michigan Volunteer Infantry left Michigan in June of 1898 bound for Cuba.This diary is re-typed from the handwritten diary he left. You will greatly enjoy his account of time spent from Michigan to Cuba and back. Please click on the picture to read his diary.

First World War 11/11/1918

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Charles Normington was in Paris France and recounted in a letter to his mother the jubilation of the war being declared ended. Just click on the above picture and under "First-Hand Accounts" click on the letter from Paris 11 Nov 1918, to view his letter.

WWII "Loose Lips Sink Ships"

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Induction Center in Baltimore, Maryland 1942.  And actually all inductees were told especially 'what not to do', because "loose lips could sink ships'. So click on the picture and choose 'World War II' at top of site and choose the heading "loose lips sink ships', and get the whole story of induction education.

Korean War Diary entries 1951

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The Battle that started the Korean War and Trials and Tribulations are a few of the true events taken from many soldiers diaries during the Korean War years.

Soldier Stories Military Alumni UVA

Delta Co. Hwy 1 in Iraq, March 2003

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MarineCorps Maj. Seth W.B. Folsom 

Most of us have scarcely a clue about what a soldier’s day-to-day life is like. While you may not know what it’s like to interrogate an insurgent or jump out of bed at 3 a.m. and don a gas mask, some of your fellow alumni do. In recent years, an average of 45 to 70 graduates each year from UVA’s ROTC programs entered military service. Still more alumni join up later.

more from the UVA 's Military Alumni

Camp Taji Iraq , 2006 & 2008

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Lara Yacus Chapman (Col ’05)

One particularly rewarding job I had was being the officer in charge at the main gate to Camp Taji.

IED's from Baghdad to Balad

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Frank J. Snyder (Engr ’92) Major, Army

Iraq 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006

But at times, it’s amazing how quickly time can grind to a halt. I remember being out on a convoy at 2 or 3 a.m. going from Baghdad to Balad. Three kilometers ahead of us, the night sky lit up twice, indicating an IED strike

John T. "Hap" Arnold (Engr '88)

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Lieutenant Colonel, Air Force

Iraq, Combined Air Operati

Ryan P. McDermott, (GSBA ' 08)

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Captain, Army

In Iraq 2003

Platoon Leader, 3rd Infantry Division

Brian T. Watkins (Com '95)

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Major, Army

In Iraq 2004, 2005

Helicopter Pilot OH-58D Kiowa  mission to focus on  finding insurgents causing probl

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Gen. Westmoreland initiated plan to use nukes in Vietnam

In many ways, Khe Sanh was the Vietnam War in a nutshell:


Recently, the New York Times ran an extraordinary article about the Vietnam War.

In it were facts that have only recently come to light and illustrate exactly how frustrated the American military and political leadership were with the war and each other.

This news was that General William Westmoreland, overall American military commander in Vietnam from 1968-1972, activated a plan to move and potentially use nuclear weapons against the North Vietnamese.

Recently declassified documents show that Westmoreland was increasingly nervous about the outcome of the siege of Khe Sanh, one of the biggest and longest battles of America’s involvement in Vietnam.

In the end the engagement, which lasted from January to June 1968, proved indecisive. The Vietnamese communists failed to dislodge the Americans from their strategic base, and US forces withdrew from the area voluntarily after the siege had been lifted.

Westmoreland also communicated with other generals, such as General Earle Wheeler,Joint Chiefs Chair

As often happens in Washington, there was a leak, and the National Security adviser to President Johnson found out about the “Fracture Jaw” discussions. Of course, he notified Lyndon Johnson right away.

Johnson had grown exceedingly suspicious of the military as the Vietnam War went on, and with good reasons. Among them were the constant promises of victory, followed by requests for billions of more dollars to win the war.

When Johnson found out about “Fracture Jaw” he was furious, and immediately issued an order to Westmoreland that left no room for misunderstanding.

More on the Vietnam Nukes plan

"Last Draftee Retires"

The last Active Duty, enlisted draftee retires!!!!

You have to hear his story.

War Stories: the last draftee

Command Sergeant Major, Jeff Mellinger, shown here serving duty in Afghanistan. He was the last draftee during the Vietnam War.

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White Feather: The Most Feared,Fearless Sniper in Vietnam

Additional Information

An American hero can be a complex beast. In some cases the title is controversial, particularly when it comes to military service.

Carlos Hathcock is one of those heroes. He served his country with distinction during the Vietnam War (1955 – 75) across 2 tours. Yet he did that as a sniper, a role which had a controversial reputation even among military ranks.

A 1987 profile in The Washington Post sums up the attitude, writing that the sniper was “an affront to the Gary Cooper mentality, the idea that in ‘High Noon’ — or America — the sheriff never draws first.”

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“Hathcock, who had done everything asked of him and more, felt unfairly stigmatized. ‘I was simply doing my job,’ he says. ‘I was just doing what they told me to do. Maybe being a sniper is something that only another sniper really can understand.’”

By the time he came home for good — and still a young man at 27 — he had 93 confirmed kills under his belt, with many more unverified. His marksmanship was beyond doubt, and in some respects Hathcock sounded like something out of a movie.

Find out more about 'White Feather'

D-Day Veteran shares his Story with Future Generations

70 years ago, Charlie Wilson was on Utah Beach with the 4th Divisions' landing to take France. Hear how he tells his story to the Children.

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Veteran's Pokemon battles help him fight back after TBI

WOW ! The power of video games

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To find out more of this compelling story about the battle over TBI, just click this link to get the whole story

The story of National Guard Intelligence Officer Zach Brooks

A Moment of TRUTH

Just 'thanking and recognizing' the service our men and women gave this country is Powerful Medicine! Please thank our Veterans when you see them.

Sgt. Barry Sadler on the Jimmy Dean Show

Sgt. Sadler wrote a very popular song about his experiences during the Vietnam War, "The Ballad of the Green 


Don't Fall Asleep in the Military!!

There are several really good 'comments' on this video: "no matter what the country and army, soldiers forever are gonna prank their mates while sleeping";

"You know whats great about being in the Military? Everything"

Service Never Stops

The 'whole Family' of a service man and service woman are effected by what happens to their loved one, some never make it back home and some come home with physical injuries and some come home with injuries you cannot see. We all need to be there for the 'whole Family'.

I Fought For YOU

"Thank You", for your service to our Country, for what you did lives on through our Freedoms and our children and grandchildren, that they too may grow and enrich the qualities of life that  you "Fought For".

US Marine Corps Major Katelyn van Dam

Major vanDam served in "Operation Enduring Freedom" as an attack helicopter pilot. On 9/11 she was in her first year at the US Naval Academy, and tells of how that changed things in her life.

Captain Jason Pak, an Inspiring story....

A son of a Military family, he graduated from West Pointin 2011, and while serving in Afghanistan in 2012 was seriously wounded. His story of recovery is truly inspirational.

EBV = Entrepreneurship Bootcamp For Veterans

Several Colleges and Universities and Small Business Development Programs offer this assistance/course for Veterans hoping to start their own business.

Veteran Owned Businesses & Entrepreneurship

The success of Veteran Owned Businesses and their growth in the B2B Marketplace