This was the longest—if not literally, then definitely emotionally—day of the trip. We made our way through some significant military sites of the War as it was played out in South Vietnam. We worked our way from Hue to the DMZ—Demilitarized Zone, landing eventually at the border between South and North Vietnam.
In the midst of the Quang Tri Province we had to ask locals to help identify the locations of former sites of former military Landing Zones (LZ) that have now been overtaken by vegetation or have been turned into plantations. Some evidence left behind were bomb craters and remnants of bunkers or hangars.
Vietnam Veterans Professor Fred Bergerson, Bob Beard (squad leader with the 2nd/7th Cavalry Battalion), and Frank Remkiewicz ’74 (acting platoon sergeant, marine 3rd tanks), had distinct memories of these sites. We first headed out to LZ Stud and LZ Evans, where Prof. Bergeson served Captain in the First Cavalry Division (Airmobile). As an intelligence officer, he participated in the relief of Khe Sanh from LZ Stud. This relief operation, codenamed, “Pegasus,” was announced during President Lyndon B. Johnson’s 1968 speech in which he said he would not seek reelection. Captain Bergerson received a Bronze Star for his meritorious achievement in assisting in the planning of the successful relief of Khe Sanh.
In addition to honoring the men in our group who served in the military, the group, led by Prof. Bergerson, memorializing the valor of four young men who served under Capt. Bergerson and who did not make it home.