THE MAILMAN WENT UA (A VIETNAM MEMOIR)

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Email from Glenda Joy Johnston-Jorgensen

What I like most about The Mailman Went UA is your honesty. Content does not have to be of a “likable” nature for the story to be well-liked! I’m not surprised that many women appreciate your book. Most of us want the truth, in whatever situation; we don’t want to be coddled or patronized. We can face or deal with just about anything - if it comes at us honestly. I imagine that some of your men friends might figure their wives or girlfriends couldn’t handle the crude language, or understand the concept of paying for sexual release, or imagine their men (husbands, boyfriends or sons) playing soccer with a human head! But actually, that the reality of your story IS “vulgar, brutal, graphic” etc etc is part of its appeal, in that you simply state the facts, as they were, not washed-up; not sanitized for anyone’s favor; rather, starch & straight ~ ‘the way it was! I honestly felt like a part of you -- or at the very least, as though a part of me was there with you.


Men may applaud your book for its gung-ho, badass, kill, fuck, don’t care, tough guy accounting of the horrors of war -- but I believe what women find in it is the truth of war & its real effects on real people; women discover their own empathy through your story; our realization of what was experienced becomes very meaningful, thus we’re able to develop a greater understanding & acceptance of those who came back to ‘the world’ different than we had known them......

Another thing I find “helpful” in critiquing a story is whether or not I picture it as a theatrical production as I’m reading it. So many people are far more “visual” than intellectual when trying to absorb the meaning of a written narrative -- which is why movies can be a great tool in education & understanding (when they’re done well). While I was reading your book, the cinematic version was continuously playing in the back of my mind. (That’s one reason I told you I thought your book could make a good movie -- especially if ‘they’ don’t change it too much.) Your writing created "the visual" that deepens perspective & sensitivity.  


5.0 out of 5 stars, Great book , I loved it. by dag

I Enjoyed this book very much. I am a Vietnam vet. When I read this book it carried me back to Vietnam. Well done, Thanks David.   


4.0 out of 5 stars, by Garry Shumann

A story of a marines year in combat in Viet Man. Lots of action although somewhat crude in content. I wouldn't recommend this to my wife to read but it's OK for a guy.


5.0 out of 5 stars, Hit the nail on the head, by Earl Blair

Remember the Sh$$detail well. Language was right on. Most people don't understand the way it was in-country. Semper Fi

4.0 out of 5 stars, Go Pack by Go packers

First time read. Kind of rambling. Goes from day to day then thought to thought. Not a real bad read though.


5.0 out of 5 stars, Job well done, David. And thanks., by Patrick Nevis (Sacramento, CA USA) (REAL NAME)    

David's experiences seem entirely consistent with other works of fiction and non-fiction about Vietnam experiences (often depressingly so) and are consistent with the David I knew. He and I were good friends during the early years of high school before he was kicked out and his troubles began with the education and legal systems.

I haven't talked to David for 50 years, but fortunately became reacquainted recently and learned about his book. As others have stated, I believe what he tells us about his life in the Corps and how he writes it to be disturbing. Yet, he does relate a story of great pain to the point of numbness and within that what he says is not always complimentary to others or even to himself. He has helped me to better understand what it feels like to be in such a vulnerable circumstance, I imagine, much like the Marines now serving on the front line in Afghanistan. He relates his unrelenting fear, whether conscious or not, to the promiscuity of the unforgiving wounds and of death; the pain of friends lost; the angry fury about betrayal, and the incredibly good fortune to make it through alive.

Finally, it is also a book to let those know who did not serve because they were afraid of going that they had very good reasons to be afraid. Job well done, David. And thanks.


5.0 out of 5 stars, Compelling by Marky Whitemurray "M2" (Real Name)

The first thing I must say is that I am in awe that David was able to revisit that horrifying time in his life with such painful honesty. This must have cost him great mental and emotional anguish. I felt his bewilderment, shock , fear, anger, shame and finally the numbing of the human spirit that was necessary for him to survive 13 months of war at 18.

It is my hope that many will read this book and perhaps better understand what we are sending our young men into when we send them war.

3.0 out of 5 stars Decent read, by Patrick Botz

I've read a lot of these books lately. This one is as raw as any. The last few chapters are a bit disappointing. They consist of paragraphs describing different incidents with no indication of time, place or relationship to the previous incident. It feels almost as if he author tired of writing the book. Even with the lapse in the final chapters, though, I still found the book compelling for its utter rawness. I suspect the feelings it evokes are probably closer to what it must have been like than many other Vietnam memoirs.


3
.0 out of 5 stars, Interesting story, by Rick Hoback 

Story told straight as if sitting down and having a conversation. Not much color or detail but shows what our guys went through in Vietnam, and I respect them all for their service.



5.0 out of 5 stars, an accurate story, by Gary L. Horton (Inver Grove Heights, MN, US) 

As a grunt corpsman in Golf 2/7, during much of the same period as the author, I found his description of the tedium, petty harassment, the sheer rush and terror of actual combat to be right on the money. My hat is off to this man for facing his personal dragons to write a story of the common grunt. Semper Fi

MY RESPONSE TO GARY L. HORTON:

Gary, thank you, brother Marine. Coming from you this means a lot. Semper Fi. David W. Mulldune

GARY L. HORTON'S RESPONSE TO ME: 

Dave, I missed Oklahoma Hills because of a torn up ankle from a previous patrol. When you guys saw the glow around DaNang from the bush, I was at Dai Loc in the Bn rear when the ammo dumps cooked off. Have some good pics of that, including the hours when it "rained" dirt, paper invoices on ammo crates, etc. As they say, a good time was had by all. Eventually moved to being the Doc on one of our Bn scout teams, picked up a heart, but was able to remain in country for the full tour. Gary

MY RESPONSE TO GARY L. HORTON:

Gary, we loved our "docs" and you know that we had the utmost respect for you guys. I also don't know too many docs who didn't get a heart because you guys were always where the "shit" was. It is a small world and an even smaller world in Vietnam. I'd love to touch bases with you since you were there around the same time I was. Check out www.themailmanwentua.com. There is a contact page. Welcome home and take care, brother.


3.0 out of 5 stars, Kids in the Bush trying to stay alive! by Jerry Norquist 

A good daily description of the "day in the life" of the guys who had to hump through 13 months of Hell for a cause that was politically motivated by officials, and politicians that didn't have a clue and turned their heads when our boys were coming home in body bags by the truck load. A good read!

4.0 out of 5 stars, Combat, by David E. Young 

It is a vivid account of the tragedies of war and the enlisted combat soldier dilemmas. Vietnam was a mistake and it is the enlisted men who suffered. It is a personal account of one man's survival.


4.0 out of 5 stars, A straight-told tale, by Victor A. Bary "Viet Vet" (New Jersey) (REAL NAME)

One Marine's experience told in a straight-forward manner without chest-thumping. After reading a number of Infantrymen's retelling of their experience in Vietnam a certain sameness begins to set in. The overwhelming take-away is that in a war without strategic goals, while the individuals' day-to-day experiences hold some interest, the overall effect of their efforts is negligible. How badly we were all used.


4.0 out of 5 stars, good reading, by Sean Redmond

It tells the story in easy to understand layman’s terms and does not fill the pages with the usual clichés.


5.0 out of 5 stars, Stunning Memoir, by Maine Guy "Ed" (Oakland, Maine United States)

Simply put, this was a stunning memoir of the Vietnam war. The honesty, fear, anger, aggression, guilt, numbness, action were overwhelming. Superb read.


4
.0 out of 5 stars, An interesting biography and a good read, by Stewart Armstrong

I have no experience of the Vietnam War but this book showed something of the reality. Well written with a matter of fact style I'd be happy to read other books by this author.


5.0 out of 5 stars, Moving, by Louis Hoffman

So real, it must hurt you to make you understand or tread it again. You will never understand someone else's pain but he gets you close.


E-mail from Mary Ann McFall

Hi, David. Frankly, David, you can write. You could probably write about anything you were familiar with. You communicate well with the pen...or word processor. You are a communicator. The fact that so many young men have come home from Iraq and Afghanistan with PTSD would argue the idea that they might be encouraged by reading about someone who has been there and done that, and leads a productive life, colored by his experiences.  Frankly, I am wondering what you are doing with your life. Like the story is not finished. You are public property, now.  :-)


4.0 out of 5 stars, Nice, first-person account of Marine combat in Vietnam, by Joseph Duffy "J.D. Reader" (Philly)

This is an all meat, no potatoes account of a marine tour in Viet Nam. Very readable. I appreciated the straightforward use of the actual language the GI's use. It's an anti-war story, as are all war stories. It reinforces the waste that was the war in Viet Nam.

3.0 out of 5 stars, Average "There I Wuz" Memoir, by James S. Ford (San Antonio, TX) (REAL NAME)

The book accomplishes what the author intended. It describes the shock and physical/emotional/psychological trauma experienced by an 18-year-old California kid who had previously lived an irresponsible lifestyle being suddenly trust into the Marine Corps and a bloody war. It is a "coming of age" story with the transformation necessarily crammed into a period of less than two years. In a way it is the story of thousands of other Marine Vietnam Vets, yet it points out how everyone's war was unique. The language is rough but it is honest to the common expressions of American troops of that time. It is honest in the depiction of leadership failures from the lack of information provided troops about Vietnam and the enemy opponents, the lack of proper resupply of water, food, and ammunition on extended missions, and the shortage of trained officers and NCOs with combat experience. Mulldune was lucky enough to survive to tell his story and hopefully the telling has helped to heal some of the damage done to him in that war.

5.0 out of 5 stars, VERY, VERY, REAL LIFE MARINE STORY, by lovlyliz

Fantastic and true. I usually don’t read war stories, but was fascinated with this true story of the hell in Vietnam.

5.0 out of 5 stars, The Mailman Went UA, by HotLips TX

I loved this book! Having served in the Army about the same time, I loved hearing the first true account of the war. Hats off to the author!

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