Hundreds of books have been published about the Vietnam War, but this is the first to chronicle the significant contribution of Americaīs smallest armed service in that conflict. From May 1965, when its cutters engaged the Viet Cong in the serviceīs first combat since World War II, to 1975 when LORAN C stations were closed in Veitnam and Thailand, the Coast Guard worked and fought alongside its sister services conducting a wide range of operations that have remained until now largely unknown to the public.
Author Alex Larzelereīs vivid, fast-paced depictions of combat operations along Vietnamīs coasts and in the rivers and canals of the Mekong Delta benefit from his service in Vietnam as a patrol-boat skipper and from scores of interviews with coastguardsmen who were there. Exhaustive research in official and private archives has yielded the most comprehensive and complete picture of the United States Coast Guardīs many wartime operations, including junk and trawler interdiction, downed-pilot search and rescue, naval gunfire support, port security, merchant marine and navigation assistance, and training and support for the South Vietnamese Navy. Also documented for the first time are the high-level negotiations among leaders of the Navy, Army, Air Force, and Coast Guard that provided for the employment of unique Coast Guard capabilities.
Lavishly illustrated with dozens of official and private photos, many never before published, this landmark history fills an important hole in the literature of both the Coast Guard and the Vietnam War and establishes a blueprint for future joint military cooperation. Scholarly in its comprehensive approach yet written with verve and drama to appeal to the widest audience, the book sets the highest standard for military histories.
"An unofficial but thoroughly researched account of Coast Guard combat operations. Drawing from his own experiences as commander of the 82-foot-long patrol boats Point Comfort and Point Banks during the Coast Guard's first deployment to Vietnam in 1965, as well as the official records and extensive interviews with those who manned the boats, Captain Larzelere has provided an authoritative account of one of the least-known aspects of the conflict."__Vietnam
Alex Larzelere retired from the U.S. Coast Guard after 29 years of service, including tours in Vietnam and as the first Coast Guard aide to the president
Click cover to enlarge