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"Those 40 or 50 people were probably the most dynamic team of people that I had a chance to work with." (Audio interview, 24:58)

   George E. Dunn
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War: Vietnam War, 1961-1975
Branch: Army
Unit: 13th Field Artillery
Service Location: Washington, DC; Schofield Barracks, Hawaii; Fort Sill, Oklahoma; Fort Campbell, Kentucky; Vietnam; Germany; Fort Riley, Kansas
Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
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Enlisting in the Army in 1961, and graduating from Officer Candidate School in 1965, Lieutenant Colonel George Dunn saw the military as a place of professional opportunity. Serving for ten months in Vietnam as the executive officer of an artillery battery, he commanded a tight-knit unit, made up of soldiers who bonded over the unconventional tactics required for combat in-country. Encountering a harsh reception from the public upon his return to the States, he has struggled to reconcile his identity as a Vietnam veteran, and the outcome of the war, with the larger scope of his military career.

Interview (Audio)
»Interview Highlights  (9 clips)
»Complete Interview  (72 min.)
»Transcript
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»Vietnam War: Looking Back, Part 3
 Audio (Interview Excerpts) (9 items)
Interest in military from young age; deciding to enlist because of opportunities available; didn’t have any knowledge of American involvement in Vietnam. (04:29) First assignment in Vietnam; working as the survey officer for the headquarters battery of the 13th Field Artillery. (02:06) Serving as the executive officer of a artillery battery; tightness of unit; difference in how artillery was used in Vietnam versus other wars. (05:35)
Training in Hawaii because of environmental similarities to Vietnam; assignments to particular divisions. (03:02) Under his leadership, his unit suffered no casualties in ten months; thoughts on luck and skill of his unit; movements of his unit. (04:52) Doesn’t like to be perceived as only a Vietnam veteran; reception when he returned to the United States; told not to wear his uniform while traveling. (03:20)
Military treatment of returning casualties during Vietnam; still hard to let go of the Vietnam era. (06:00) Thoughts on the end of the war; demoralizing to see the war end as it did; thoughts on how the military handled itself in Vietnam. (05:18) Decision to enlist in the military and what it meant given the context of Vietnam; felt like his service was a success because he took the best care of his men that he could. (02:48)
  
 
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  The Library of Congress  >> American Folklife Center
  October 26, 2011
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