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War Photographer Prose Essay


Boy we’ve taken some crap today. ” “Really? ” I said. “Yeah… not a pretty sight, I’m sick of seeing death everywhere, not too good a feeling, or smell to start off with, but you get used to it after a few weeks. ” explained the third GI sitting at the bar. “I think I can imagine. ” I replied. The guys started talking amongst themselves again, so after that brief conversation with them, I had a couple more beers and went up to bed. “Terry, Terry you awake yet? ” I asked “Yeah I’ll be up in a bit” Terry replied grumpily.

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I slowly emerged from the bed and went over to the apartment window, I looked out and I could see run down buildings, looking like some backstreet of New York. Four in the morning and it was off back to the airport to board a military helicopter and head towards the Hanoi area. We started to take off, with the weather being as hot as it could be. Two minutes had past and we were already five hundred feet high above the jungle canopy and heading towards our target area. My stomach started churning due to the fact we were getting very close to Hanoi and I didn’t feel prepared for it.

Suddenly an urgent radio message came through from Military HQ telling us our flight plan had been aborted, and that we were being diverted to a rescue mission further North in Lao Cai. A group of GI’s had been surrounded by the gook’s in a local village. The helicopter gained speed towards the location given. Adrenalin was running high amongst all on board as we hurtled at break neck pace over the paddy fields and jungle areas. Finally we reached our destination to see a burning village just ahead. The helicopter circled twice before finding what seemed a reasonable clearing for us to touch down.

As we descended, trees rustled and the sound of screaming children could be heard. As soon as the blades had slowed down sufficiently, the crew excluding the pilot ran off towards the group of GI’s who were struggling not only with their own wounded, but with a young Vietnamese woman and a baby girl. They were barely able to walk having both suffered shell shock and shrapnel injuries. Terry and I immediately ran over to help and finally we were all aboard the helicopter much to the pilot’s relief. Within seconds we were back in the sky with a stream of shells and machine gun fire following us.

Everybody was ordered to hit the deck as bullets passed through the fuselage of the aircraft. Three hours later we arrived at Saigon Airport with an ambulance waiting to take the injured to Saigon Hospital. Lying in bed on a beautiful Sunday morning in Virginia in the year1972, thinking back to those days sitting in the hospital waiting for news on how Ha`ng and little Tuyen, the Vietnamese family who we’d rescued back in 1968, were getting on. A nurse greeting Terry and I in the waiting room telling us they would be fit and ready to go home in a few days.

The only trouble was, they had no home to go back to. But here I am now and my bedroom door opens, in walks my beautiful little girl clutching her mother’s hand singing Happy Birthday Daddy. She runs over and jumps onto the bed and gives me a big kiss as I say “Thank you for remembering Tuyen! ” Show preview only The above preview is unformatted text This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Miscellaneous section.

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