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03-18-2010, 04:10 AM   #241
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QuoteOriginally posted by hillerby Quote
1. Aussie Infantryman: This shot is one I took while on an operation with the Royal Australian Infantry. These guys were some of the best I've ever soldiered with and they treated us like family the whole time we were with them. Their field rations SUCK though. I just couldn't develop a taste for cold corned mutton! Like us, they were all young and were trying to do their job as best they could. If we've still got any Aussie fans here; just know that I know what Long Tan Day is and remember it every year.
Bully Beef. My grandad said the same about the rations in WWII...think most of them were British WWI surplus, and I'm sure there were some WWII and Korea surplus ones kicking around Vietnam. You might've had better rations, but we had better can openers.

I could tell he was an Aussie before I even read the caption. Mostly the British-style belt order and the hat. I've always wondered why we don't celebrate Long Tan or Kokoda as much as Anzac Day. 'Spose we can't have too many holidays.

When're you going to put all these into a nice book?

QuoteQuote:
The Kiwis always told me that "at least our ancestors aren't a bunch of bloody convicts"!
Hey, at least our ancestors didn't requiring crutching...

03-18-2010, 03:22 PM   #242
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Aussies, Kiwis and ME

Well, I'm back! I can't believe how this thread has made me remember so many details from all the pictures., and it's been a loooong time.
Anyway, going through the "Big Box" of stuff I got from my dad I realized that most of what he sent me are duplicates made from the original shots.
I hope ya'll realize that the original shots were much better exposed than what you're seeing here, but time has definately taken it's toll on the film. Not to mention the fact that Photoshop is still much of a mystery to me in many ways. Most of what you've seen on this thread is pretty much what I've got.... no restoration to speak of. The dust, scratches, etc. is what's in the original (or duplicates) that I have in front of me.
Anyway, I've got three shots here for ya'll to review:

1. Combat Photographer: This is at least a dupe and perhaps 2 or three generations, as it's shot of ME! I certainly didn't take the picture, but it was taken when we were on operations with the Aussie/New Zelanders when we were setting up to relax in the evening. Nothing of importance here except that "Thousand Yard Stare" pretty much shows up yet again. At this point in my tour I'd probably only been in Nam' for a few weeks or couple of months at most.

2. Kiwi Arty: This one I remember! We were attached with the Kiwi Artillery battery and they were firing in support of the Aussies who were engaged downrange. At the end of the day, all I remember is that they were "ON TARGET".

3. Combat Photogs 3: This was shot when I was attached with the 1st Infantry Division during operation Cedar Falls (or Junction City ... can't remember which). The three individuals in center and left frame are all Combat Photographers who were also there with me. The one guy on the left has a small bandage on his forearm. He was laying less than arms length away from me when he took some shrapnel from a "command denoted" bomb a few meters from our position. Guys on both sides of me were wounded and I came up without a scratch ... Go Figure! They are all watching as another group of men are tending another (more seriously) wounded soldier is being taken care of. The only thing that strikes me about this shot is that there are 3 (count em') Combat Photograpers here and I'm the only one shooting film.
That's it for tonight, I'll continue to go through stuff and see what turns up.
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03-18-2010, 10:53 PM   #243
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Thanks again for continuing this thread!

I just had an idea about restoring your images. In the Mini-Challenges, Games, and Photo stories section there's a weekly Post Processing Challenge. The idea is that once a week a picture is uploaded and anyone can pp it the way they see fit and after seven days a winner is announced.

You could start a Photo Restoration Help Challenge and upload a few pictures and anyone could try their hand at restoring your images.

That way you could get at least some of your most precious shots restored.

Just a thought...
03-19-2010, 05:59 AM   #244
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That's COOL idea! I may visit there sometime this weekend and post a couple of shots just to see what the reaction is. These Pentaxians have been amazing in so many ways.
You may not be aware, but this whole thread began as a result of some questions I'd posted some time ago when I was moving from film to digital.

03-19-2010, 10:54 PM   #245
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Great, I think I'll give it a shot although I'm not exactly a PP guru.
03-19-2010, 11:29 PM   #246
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Hi Bob,

QuoteOriginally posted by hillerby Quote

1. Combat Photographer: This is at least a dupe and perhaps 2 or three generations, as it's shot of ME! I certainly didn't take the picture, but it was taken when we were on operations with the Aussie/New Zelanders when we were setting up to relax in the evening. Nothing of importance here except that "Thousand Yard Stare" pretty much shows up yet again. At this point in my tour I'd probably only been in Nam' for a few weeks or couple of months at most.
You look very young.

QuoteOriginally posted by hillerby Quote
2. Kiwi Arty: This one I remember! We were attached with the Kiwi Artillery battery and they were firing in support of the Aussies who were engaged downrange. At the end of the day, all I remember is that they were "ON TARGET".
Can you remember when this was and which area it was? My next-door neighbour was in 7RAR (Nui Dat, I think) and is heavily involved in veterans support services. He's pretty crook with emphysema. His wife reckons he got hit by chemicals in Viet Nam.

QuoteOriginally posted by hillerby Quote
3. Combat Photogs 3: This was shot when I was attached with the 1st Infantry Division during operation Cedar Falls (or Junction City ... can't remember which). The three individuals in center and left frame are all Combat Photographers who were also there with me. The one guy on the left has a small bandage on his forearm. He was laying less than arms length away from me when he took some shrapnel from a "command denoted" bomb a few meters from our position. Guys on both sides of me were wounded and I came up without a scratch ... Go Figure!
Well, Bob, you must have been living right

QuoteOriginally posted by hillerby Quote
They are all watching as another group of men are tending another (more seriously) wounded soldier is being taken care of. The only thing that strikes me about this shot is that there are 3 (count em') Combat Photograpers here and I'm the only one shooting film.
That's it for tonight, I'll continue to go through stuff and see what turns up.
Isn't there a quote from a famous photographer somewhere something like "The only bad photo is the one you didn't take"? ... or words to that effect.

Richard.
03-20-2010, 07:19 AM   #247
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Thanks for all the memorys Bob,
I didn't get over to Saigon till 72 and just for a short time. Ground Support Tech US Marine Corp Airwing.
03-21-2010, 01:10 PM   #248
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A Response Today

Just enough time today to post a couple of responses and comments.

lithos: You asked "when I was going to make a book"? Well, this question has been posed many a time and I don't know how to even answer it. I've contemplated such an endeavor several times, but always end up by saying "who cares!" The real truth is that "I ain't much of a writer. "
Oh, I can make an outline, and write something if the subject is pretty specific. I did so in school and did pretty well with it. This subject is so General in nature, that I don't really know how to proceed. I mean, where's the introduction, main body, and conclusion ..... ? I used to do a lot of public speaking and I used the same thought pattern .... prepare an outline which must include an introduction, main body, and conclusion. I haven't figured out where my experiences, comments, etc. fit in all of that kind of formality.

RichardS: You commented that I looked very young. Yound indeed, I was 22 at the time I went to Nam'. That made me a two to four years older than many of the "junior enlisted men" at the time. My team mate on our photo team was only 18 when he arrived ... like many, he left an "old man". I'd not say that we were "robbed of our youth". We were however, pushed into manhood very abruptly!
You asked about when and where the pictures of the Kiwis/Aussies were taken. I can only say that these shots were made in late 66', or perhaps early 67'. That's about as close as I can recall it. I do remember that we were in an area around Nui Dat, because that's where we flew in to report for our mission. I also think it was 7 RAR that we were with for a time.
You mentioned that your neighbor is active in Veteran's Issues ..... Give him my very best and tell him that "I UNDERSTAND"! I also suffered from the constant nightmares and all that goes with it for years. Moreover, I have a few health issues associated with Agent Orange, so I know what that's all about. I do know from reviewing maps, etc. that Agent Orange was pretty heavily sprayed in the area around Nui Dat, so my guess is that he too was exposed. I also am active in the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter locally.
Finally, you commented that "the only bad photograph is the one you never took". I'd have to concur with that one for sure. People sometimes ask me how can I find good subjects to shoot .... my answer "leave your camera behind".

dosan: Thanks for posting the info regarding the Kiwi/Aussie contribution to Vietnam. I know that there are some Vietnam Veteran's organization in Australie as I've visited their websites several time .... seems as though they suffer some of the same problems that we've faced here in the US! I can only say that whether American, Australian, Kiwi, Korean, or others; they are truly "my brothers" and they were bold and loyal men ... each and every one.

Well, I've gotta go for now, but like MacArthur during WWII .... "I SHALL RETURN".

03-21-2010, 06:40 PM   #249
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Thanks for sharing your experiences hillerby, really interesting thread to flick through.

Many of my favourite photographers were in Vietnam during the various wars there. I visited the War Remebrance museum in Saigon, which has a large permanent war photography/photographers exhibit, which Horst Faas helped set up I think. Photographers (from all sides) seem to be held in very high esteem.

Also finally have the Larry Burrows - Vietnam book on the way, as well as the recently published Don McCullin book - Shaped by War, and the classic Vietnam Inc by Philip Jones Griffiths which should be pretty interesting.

Last edited by CWyatt; 03-21-2010 at 10:40 PM.
03-24-2010, 07:36 AM   #250
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Hi Bob, I just found this thread and have thoroughly enjoyed reading it all and looking at the photo's you have been nice enough to share with us all.

QuoteOriginally posted by hillerby Quote
but always end up by saying "who cares!" The real truth is that "I ain't much of a writer. "
I for one think you do a fine job of writing, I think if the subject has substance the style is irrelevant (not that there is a thing wrong with the way you write). I think you should compose your story.

My grandparents moved to australia after WWII and lost contact with their english relatives, on my visit to England recently i had the chance to catch up with my dads cousins (only known english family found so far) and spent the day with him. Anyway the point of this is he knew so much about my grandparents that i had never known (my grandfather died before i was born) and knew stories that my father did not know, especially surrounding my grandfathers service in the navy. Anyway the point of this tale is that he told me he bought a computer and wrote a hundred pages about his life to make a book, growing up etc, and all the stories about our family. But decided before he finished it that no one would care about it and who would ever read it and deleted it and shredded the hard copies... well i would have read it, and i am pretty sure the rest of my family would have.
While you may never print it off or make it into a book, i guarantee someone will appreciate it one day. The views and posts here tell me that quite a few people already do.

Regards,
Wade
03-24-2010, 03:49 PM   #251
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Bob,

This thread is what led me to the Pentax Forums. Looking forward to more narrative and photos from your Dad's box.

During Dad's continued service in the reserves (60's, 70's) my brother and I wore decent haircuts, and POW bracelets with the name of a buddy of his from training, too.

Thanks for your service!

-John

Last edited by JohnV; 03-24-2010 at 04:04 PM.
03-30-2010, 10:33 PM   #252
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QuoteOriginally posted by hillerby Quote
lithos: You asked "when I was going to make a book"? Well, this question has been posed many a time and I don't know how to even answer it. I've contemplated such an endeavor several times, but always end up by saying "who cares!" The real truth is that "I ain't much of a writer. "
Oh, I can make an outline, and write something if the subject is pretty specific. I did so in school and did pretty well with it. This subject is so General in nature, that I don't really know how to proceed. I mean, where's the introduction, main body, and conclusion ..... ? I used to do a lot of public speaking and I used the same thought pattern .... prepare an outline which must include an introduction, main body, and conclusion. I haven't figured out where my experiences, comments, etc. fit in all of that kind of formality.
No, mate, not a bleedin' 40,000 word text-only book - a photo book. A coffee-table book, with you photos in it. (Do you own the rights to the photos or are they still property of the US Army?)

A bit of text would be a nice touch - say, a 70/30 mix of pictures/text - the text to give the pictures context. But the pics would be the main focus. If you can get hold of something like Tim Page's NAM, that's a good example.
04-06-2010, 07:02 PM   #253
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Honestly, I don't know how you combat photographers do it. Anytime I'm in theater in the Army, the last thing on my mind is taking pictures aside from time on base. Nothing beats some photos of you and your "battles" together, though. You never forget your battle buddies.
05-08-2010, 11:43 AM - 1 Like   #254
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Back After LONG Absence

Well, I just noticed that its been something like 2 months since my last post! Anyway, I'm back and I've attached a couple of shots. Before getting the the commentary about these latest (very average at best) shots, I'd like to respond to a couple of previous postings:

CWyatt: Wrote with regard to a "War Museum" in Saigon that he'd visited. Man that sounds like something I wish I could see! If it weren't so expensive, I love to make a trip back there and see some of the places and how they look today.
Cwyatt mentioned the museum as being set up by Horst Faas. Now I had an opportunity to be on an operation when he was present. We went into the LZ on the same bird (helicopter). I remember him quite well. They guy was a very large man and one helluva good photographer. I also worked with Larry Burrows on one ocassion. I met and worked with a lot of the civilian photographers at one time or another. Names like Tim Paige, Dana Stone, Henri Huett and scores of others are guys that I met during my tour there. The one guy who made the biggest impression on me personally was Henri Huett. If you've never heard of him, just google the name. He was one of very few civilian photographers I met who didn't feel like they were somehow better than the military photographers. Henri would sit and talk to you one on one which was interesting since he was born (and later died) in Vietnam. He knew the people, the culture and their history better than anyone I've ever met.

Mibane: Here, another comment with regard to "the book". I just had a conversation w/my oldest son (Michael) last night about that very subject. He keeps "rattlin' my cage" about a book as well. Now Michael has seen all my photos several times over the years and what he wants is something more along the lines of a written personal history with a few photographs to supplement the text. I've long considered such a piece since I've never considered any of the photos as particularly extraoridnary in any way. Perhaps I'll undertake such a thing some day. Now if I were a photographer of the calibre of Burrows, Faas, Huett, etc. a picture book might be the way to go.
Either way, it would be a massive undertaking to say the least.

Now to the photos .....
Both of these photos were shot while we were "checking out" a village along the coast. Again, nothing particulary astounding about the photos, but the interesting thing about this village was that there were hardly any people there! In one shot you can identify our platoon leader talking to one of the few Vietnamese people we encounted there, If you look at the buildings, they're not Mud Huts so typical in any third world country. These building are hearty, sturdy and pretty solidly built; which would be indicative of someone of means to have owned or lived there ... yet the place was pretty much void of inhabitants.
I can also make out that another photographer was also there .... he's got two cameras on neck straps.
That's it for now, I'll sort through the "big box" during the coming week and see what turns up.
Ya'll have been GREAT and I appreciate all the comments and questions that seem to continue coming each and every time I post something. This thread has (after 40 years) made me understand that as a Combat Photographer, I was doing something important. I recently read that during the peak of the war, the Combat Photographers (military only) were funneling over 10,000 images a month into the National Archives. That from a relatively small number of people.
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05-08-2010, 12:18 PM   #255
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Bob, nice to seem some activity on this thread again! Really appreciate your time and efforts. Don't worry about the quality of the photos - we all know what happens with 40+ year old pics and negs!!
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