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Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter 310,
President's Message
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VVA 310

The Vietnam Veterans of America National Chapter of the Year - 1999 & 2007

Newsletter of the Year 2007, 09, 11 & 15


President’s Message - David 'Doc' Martinez


Now this is the Law of the Jungle
as old and as true as the sky
And the Wolf that shall keep it may prosper
but the Wolf that shall break it must die
As the Creeper that girdles the tree-trunk
the Law runneth forward and back
For the Strength of the Pack is the Wolf
and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack


I’m humbled by the great reception we received at the 4th of July Parade in Ypsilanti. The crowd cheered and clapped for us with such enthusiasm and the stood for our flag. It was largely due to our Friends who carried our banner that said “Stand Up For Your Flag”. Again to our Friends and AVVA members, I would like to pay tribute to them who give so unselfishly of their time and love for us. Jane Kinzinger, Sandra Martinez, Bonnie Hall, Libby Price, Sharon Ski, Shirley Hitte, Meni Draper. They carried our banner and encourage the crowd to stand up. What would we do without them?

I have been very busy since we returned home from Florida. The 4th of July 2015 was a long parade for me.   I have not marched in about 10 years. It was a long parade and it seemed to last forever, yet I made it and so did the members who marched with me. The American flag was what I always carried but Annette carried it with great pride and she looked good doing so. Then the hard core; Dave Draper, Mgt. Sgt. Clark in his dress blues, so sharp, Don Miller, Roy Hall, Doc Martinez,  John Kinzinger,  Jon Luker, Richard Price, Steve Hitte, Bob Ski from Florida and Vance McCrumb.  I am sure I have forgotten a few but age 79 the memory begins to fade so please forgive me.

After the parade we got a ride with Al Merritt and Wendy to our cars. I rushed home to use the facilities and that was a terrible mistake because all the roads were blocked due construction. Spent about a half hour riding around the back roads to get to the Memorial. My sincere thanks to Jon Luker, Al Merritt and Wendy for the great meal they arranged and the company we had.  

We were great and the best America had at the time who served in Vietnam War. I thank you all for your commitment to keep this wonderful country free and strong as ever.  

I heard some say is it right have a picnic in front of the Memorial.  Well, we were off to the side, but I think we should be in back of the Memorial.  In the shade where the picnic table is. I’m not politically correct and I say what's on my mind.  I guess that’s nature of the beast.

I believe that those young men we honor yearly, if their spirit was there with us, they would say “Thanks Vietnam Vets” and have a hot dog and a cold water for me. I respect the men whose names are on our Memorial. I have mowed the Memorial grounds for 12 years with Sgt. Boggs and I love this Memorial as much as John Kinzinger, Phil Hecker, Lloyd Lee,nTom Fifield, Jack McManus, Hal Dodson. None of us who came back are hero’s.  We just did our job. The hero's are on our Memorial and on The Wall in DC

I had the pleasure of being one of John K.'s guest speakers at his church in Ann Arbor along with Bill Abbey and Bob London. We spoke on Khe Sanh and the battle that was waged there. The Brown Bag Club seemed to enjoy it and I didn’t get as emotional as I usually do.  Its been 50 years, but time doesn’t take away the every day horror of picking up those 19, 20 ,21 and 22 year old men we air lifted out of the jaws of death!

You, the Vietnam Veterans and our Friends are my strength, without which I would be nothing. Together we can rise to higher exceptions but it takes us all to work together. We had a great crowd at our meeting and at the parade, Thank you all so very much.

Other items we have done of great importance that should be noted. I sent the Trennial Certification of Ceremonial Rifles to USATACOM LCMC. It was prepared by Ken Rogge and each rifle listed by serial numbers.  The plate of each rifle was photographed. A picture of all the rifles was included. Many thanks to Ken Rogge for his excellent job.

The Deuce-an-a-half paint job crew are Don Miller, Al Dyer, John K, and George Betz sanded and repainted the truck. Thanks to these gentleman for there hard work, the truck looks beautiful. Only 4 people showed to help, I'm sure we we can do better than when the Tank comes up for its paint job.

The Helicopter now has a nice chain fence around it courtesy of Don Miller and  John K. You can confirm with Don and John who else was involved.

I must like to write the President’s Message because it’s my way of letting you know that I care about you. Thanks to all you wonderful members because it's you that make this Chapter the great, warm and close family that we are. Our success is your success.

Someone asked me if had another picture for the newsletter.  I gave Jon three pictures, one of my graduation from Fleet Marine Force Service School in June of 1957, and one in the helicopter awaiting a medevac mission in at LZ Studv 10 minutes from Khe Sanh.


David “Doc” Martinez


Together, we truly make a difference.



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VVA 310 PO Box 3221 Ann Arbor, MI 48106-3221
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