I am SFC Michael G. Stahl, U.S. Army (Ret.). As a high school dropout, I enlisted on 22 Nov. 1962, at the age of 17, in response to the Cuban Missile Crisis. I lived near an Air Force SAC (Strategic Air Command) base in central Florida, so if the balloon did go up . . .
While in the Army, I was trained as a parachute rigger. I learned to speak both Arabic and German fluently. I was accepted into special forces (Green Beret) training and earned my beret as an operations and intelligence sergeant. I “volunteered” for service in Vietnam three (3) times. I served two (2) tours. I was awarded several “baubles” and was medically retired due to combat wounds received on 8 Aug. ‘70.
I have recently donated all my military memorabilia to The Heritage Arsenal - Military Museum Consultants: Honoring and Preserving the Legacy of Military Service - who have turned it into an exhibit honoring the work of USA Special Forces in Vietnam. They have produced one video for there YouTube channel about my items - and me. It can be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-mAOjohjNc
They have also posted the first three of a series of planned interviews with me about my experiences in Vietnam.
The battle of Hau Duc and award of the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L37S_CeiPbc
The Tet Offensive. Parts 1 and 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AhAkcJm1zf0&t=15s AND https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7NWJhZBCRxU&t=30s
VIETNAM: Aug. ‘67 to Aug. ‘68: After graduating from Special Forces Training Group (Airborne) at Ft. Bragg, NC, I was assigned to the 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne) headquartered in Nha Trang. I was assigned to Co. “C” in DaNang. From there I went to the A-Team at Tien Phuoc where I worked first as the team’s Intel Sgt. And then as their S-5 (Civil Affairs/Psychological Operations) NCO. Then I was reassigned as the C-Team’s S-5 NCO. As a result of this tour, I was awarded a Silver Star, a Bronze Star, and a Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry. Read more >>>
Aug. ‘69 to Aug. ‘70: I requested reassignment to Vietnam after my German language training. When I arrived at Nha Trang, I requested assignment to CCN (Command and Control, North), an ultra top secret unit of MACVSOG (Military Advisory Command - Vietnam - Studies and Observation Group), where I requested to be assigned to the recon company. Instead, I was given the job of the S-2 (Intelligence) Sgt. On MLT-2 (Mobile Launch Team - 2) at Quang Tri. Then I was reassigned to the TOC (Tactical Operations Center) as an intelligence Sgt.
I finished my tour in the recon company, as I had first requested. I became the One-Zero (1-0) (i.e., team leader) of RT Michigan. I was WIA on 8 Aug. ‘70, approximately two (2) weeks before I was scheduled to return home. As a result of this tour I was awarded a second Silver Star, a second Bronze Star, a Purple Heart and an Air Medal. Learn more >>> Related links: Ballads | Decorations | War Stories
Sky Diving: I had long wanted to learn to sky dive since the early 60’s TV series Ripcord. As it would have it, the NCOIC (Non-Commissioned Officer In Charge), MSG Verlin R. Glenn was a long time parachutist/sky diver and held the eight (8th) expert license issued in this country, D8. I made my first sport jump in March of 1964. It became my passion and my life. I hold USPA (United States Parachute Association) licenses A716 (novice), B4223 (parachutist), C3346 (jumpmaster) and D2228 (Expert); APF (Australian Parachute Federation) B471; FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) Senior Rigger Certificate 1644223.
I was very active in the sport in competition, demonstrations, training and safety. I was a member of the Ft. Ord (CA) Sport Parachute Club twice, both times being elected to club president and appointed the training/safety officer and club rigger. I made three (3) sport jumps in the Republic of Vietnam (over active combat zones) and jump in Australia while on R&R (Rest and Relaxation). I left the sport in 1972, and returned in 2011 making 12 free falls in Colorado. Learn more >>>
IMPORTANT message from Andrea Miller of Digital.com:
I manage the Small Business Entrepreneurship Outreach Program here at Digital.com. I wanted to connect with you and let you know about our recently published guide specifically for US Veterans who are in the process of starting or currently own a small business.
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