The Rain- Vietnam Veteran Sniper Reflects on His Experiences Through Poetry

The Rain- Vietnam Veteran Sniper Reflects on His Experiences Through Poetry
John poem book cover

John Steinmeyer served in Vietnam as an Infantry Sergeant with the 9th division in the Mekong Delta, then was transferred to the 25th Division and served the last half of his tour in a sniper team.

Thuy Smith’s father (Vietnam Veteran) and Vietnamese mother along with Thuy were friends of John and his family. This will be the first post of a collection of poems that John wrote of his many experiences during his time in Vietnam. Thuy Smith (TSOI) was given permission to share his poems on all of TSOI’s media platforms, etc.

First Poem:

Other Side

The mixed bag of newbies

now scuttle from the plane.

Welcome to the other side.

The side that is insane.

A side that tears emotion

and pulls it down the drain.

Welcome.

Welcome to the rice bowl

of pits and paddy holes.

Welcome where the numbers

are counted as the goals.

welcome where the living

are walking on their souls.

Welcome.

welcome to the Jungle

where night time brings the fear.

welcome to the rifle

and one hundred pounds of gear.

Welcome to the fighting

that now says you are here.

Welcome to the other side of the world.

(C) John Steinmeyer


More reflections from John’s collection of poems

  1. Sniffer
  2. The Fish
  3. More to Come

Back of book

Women Who Served During the War in Vietnam

There are many to choose from, but here are a few of our picks. Vietnam Veterans’ Day is March 29th in Wisconsin and a dozen other states. More at tsio.org

Approximately 11,000 American military women were stationed in Vietnam during the war. About 90% were nurses in the Army, Navy, and Air Force. Others served as physicians, physical therapists, personnel in the Medical Service Corps, air traffic controllers, communications specialists, intelligence officers, clerks and in other capacities in different branches of the armed services. Nearly all volunteered. There is no official, accurate record of the number of women who served during Vietnam.
Approximately 11,000 American military women were stationed in Vietnam during the war. About 90% were nurses in the Army, Navy, and Air Force. Others served as physicians, physical therapists, personnel in the Medical Service Corps, air traffic controllers, communications specialists, intelligence officers, clerks and in other capacities in different branches of the armed services. Nearly all volunteered. There is no official, accurate record of the number of women who served during Vietnam. Monument dedicated to the women who served in Vietnam -D.C
Master Sergeant Barbara Jean Dulinsky was a member of the United States Marine Corps who, in 1967, became the first woman United States Marine to serve in a combat zone, when her request to be sent to Vietnam was granted. She served at Military Assistance Command, Vietnam (MACV) Headquarters in Saigon. She died in 1995.
Master Sergeant Barbara Jean Dulinsky was a member of the United States Marine Corps who, in 1967, became the first woman United States Marine to serve in a combat zone, when her request to be sent to Vietnam was granted. She served at Military Assistance Command, Vietnam (MACV) Headquarters in Saigon. She died in 1995. Via:http://marinephotos.togetherweserved.com/
Three U.S. Navy nurses are decorated with purple heart medals in Saigon to become the first American women to receive the medal for service in the Vietnam War at a ceremony on Jan. 7, 1965. The nurses were wounded in an explosion in Hotel Brink in Saigon, Christmas eve. From left are, Lt. Barbara J. Wooster of Laurel, Md.; Lt. Ruth A. Mason of Goshen, N.Y.; and Lt. Ann D. Reynold of Dover, New Hampshire.
hree U.S. Navy nurses are decorated with purple heart medals in Saigon to become the first American women to receive the medal for service in the Vietnam War at a ceremony on Jan. 7, 1965. The nurses were wounded in an explosion in Hotel Brink in Saigon, Christmas eve. From left are, Lt. Barbara J. Wooster of Laurel, Md.; Lt. Ruth A. Mason of Goshen, N.Y.; and Lt. Ann D. Reynold of Dover, New Hampshire. Via:Art.com
Members of the Red Cross Supplemental Recreational Activities Overseas (SRAO) program were commonly referred to as Donut Dollies. Donut Dollies were single, female college graduates who were used primarily as morale boosters for U.S. combat troops in Vietnam.
Members of the Red Cross Supplemental Recreational Activities Overseas (SRAO) program were commonly referred to as Donut Dollies. Donut Dollies were single, female college graduates who were used primarily as morale boosters for U.S. combat troops in Vietnam. Via:cambridgeblog.org
After spending a number of years nursing for the Navy, Kay Bauer requested assignment to Vietnam and arrived there in January 1966. She was part of a Forward Surgical Team assigned to a Vietnamese provincial hospital in Rach Gia, in southernmost South Vietnam. She worked closely with her colleagues, both American and Vietnamese, in a hospital that had no running water or air conditioning.
After spending a number of years nursing for the Navy, Kay Bauer requested assignment to Vietnam and arrived there in January 1966. She was part of a Forward Surgical Team assigned to a Vietnamese provincial hospital in Rach Gia, in southernmost South Vietnam. She worked closely with her colleagues, both American and Vietnamese, in a hospital that had no running water or air conditioning. Via: Sisterhoodofwar.com
Photographer Catherine Leroy - During the Vietnam War, she shot some of the most brutal photographs to come out of the country. Wounded by shrapnel while covering a US Marine unit in the DMZ, she was taken prisoner during the Tet Offensive  by the North Vietnamese Army (NVA), and during her imprisonment, talked the NVA into being photographed. She left the war with post-traumatic stress but kept covering war zones from Northern Ireland, Somalia, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq and more. She died in 2006
Photographer Catherine Leroy – During the Vietnam War, she shot some of the most brutal photographs to come out of the country. Wounded by shrapnel while covering a US Marine unit in the DMZ, she was taken prisoner during the Tet Offensive by the North Vietnamese Army (NVA), and during her imprisonment, talked the NVA into being photographed. She left the war with post-traumatic stress but kept covering war zones from Northern Ireland, Somalia, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq and more. She died in 2006. Via: twirlit.com

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