From the Editor:
Our November issue was a record breaking size for us, but there was so much to cover, both good and bad. We all enthusiastically worked extra hard to cover it all.
There was the SFACON 2022, and Alex Quade’s wonderful articles, including Chapter Treasurer Richard Simonian’“s receiving the prestigious St. Neri Award, and the internment of Bruce Long. If you missed it, go to https://www.specialforces78.com/chapter-78-newsletter-for-november-2022/, click on the Sentinel cover picture to view or download pdf version of the November issue. The PDF version includes all the info you don’t otherwise see.
This month we start, appropriately enough, with a Christmas story from John Stryker Meyer. Every Christmas he is drawn back to a hill in Laos where, but for an amazing “Kingbee” pilot named Nguyen Tuong, he and the rest of his Strike Team Idaho would have met their end. Decades later Meyer and Tuong were reunited in Orange County, CA.
Then, a Letter to the Editor from Dan Thompson brought us a wonderful poem and the touching story behind it. The title is “Gravediggers of Laos” and it is an absorbing read. Written for the membership of SOA, mostly comprised of SOG veterans, the message to the families of those that were, or remain, missing was enthusiastically and emotionally well received.
Following that is the hard hitting conclusion of Greg Walker’s telling of former Green Beret David Baez’ story. In each part, Greg reveals information unknown to the public and brings out why David was practically destined to follow the path he did with the Sandanistas. His eye opening stories have brought to light efforts of SF that helped turn the tide of Communist insurgencies in Central and South America.
Greg follows with a tribute to SOG legend Robert “Spider” Parks who very recently passed away. Greg had known “Spider” since Panama.
The 10th Group Public Affairs Office team has produced videos of the presentations at SFACON 2022. There is some great history and lessons learned there. You’ll find links to the easy way to view each one on our back cover.
Finally, here’s a quiz for you. How does one find several years worth of copies of the DROP on the Teamhouse website? The answer is: go to the website: https://teamhouse.specialforcesassociation.org/, log in, look among the 18 blue headings and find DOCUMENTS. Scroll down until you see The Drop Archive, click on it and select the quarter’s Drop you wish to view, all the way back to 2011.