Capt. Ed Freeman, US Army (Idaho Statesman)
Ed Freeman, a Medal of Honor recipient and Vietnam War veteran, died August 20, 2008. His role in the battle at Ia Drang Valley was immortalized in the book, “We Were Soldiers Once…And Young“, and the movie, “We Were Soldiers.” This tribute was sent by a Flag officer and really puts his heroism in perspective.
You’re an 18 or 19 year old kid.
You’re critically wounded,
and dying in the jungle in the
Ia Drang Valley, 11-14-1965.
LZ Xray, Vietnam.
Your Infantry Unit is outnumbered 8 – 1,
and the enemy fire is so intense,
from 100 or 200 yards away,
that your own Infantry Commander
has ordered the Medi-Vac helicopters
to stop coming in.
You’re lying there,
listening to the enemy machine guns,
and you know you’re not getting out.
Your family is 1/2 way around the world,
12,000 miles away,
and you’ll never see them again.
As the world starts to fade in and out,
you know this is the day.
Then, over the machine gun noise,
you faintly hear that sound of a helicopter,
and you look up to see a Huey,
but it doesn’t seem real,
because no Medi-Vac markings are on it.
Ed Freeman is coming for you.
He’s not Medi-Vac, so it’s not his job,
but he’s flying his Huey down into the machine gun fire,
after the Medi-Vacs were ordered not to come.
He’s coming anyway…..
And he drops it in,
and sits there in the machine gun fire,
as they load 2 or 3 of you on board.
Then he flies you up and out through the gunfire,
to the Doctors and Nurses.
And, he kept coming back…… 13 more times…..
and took about 30 of you and your buddies out,
who would never have gotten out.
Medal of Honor Winner Ed Freeman died yesterday
Aug 30 at 80, in Boise, ID.
None of that is Hollywood fiction!
May God Bless Ed Freeman.
Lest we forget those who died…..
Mr. Freeman received his Medal of Honor on July 16, 2001 – 36 years after his heroic feat (click here to read about the ceremony and see the full citation).
Several years ago, I had the privilege meeting him in a local grocery store and spending several minutes talking to him. He was a man who was proud of his service, and I had the feeling he was quite proud of the men he served with.