Elite and highly trained, the 3d Force Recon's eight-man teams were assigned to obtain vital information about NVA operations. Alone, the men of these small teams were sent behind enemy lines, where they all knew that a single mistake could cost everyone their lives.
United States Navy Hospital Corpsman Bruce Norton was the only navy corpsman to act as a Marine Force Recon Team Leader. In Force Recon Diary, 1969 Doc Norton chronicles his life, mission by mission, with the 3d Force Recon in the DMZ and the A Shau Valley. He describes the tense patrols, the supreme courage, the sacrifices—in ambushes and hot landing zones—that made this courageous company one of only two Marine units during the entire Vietnam War to receive the United States Army's Valorous Unit Citation.
|Publisher:||Random House Publishing Group|
|Edition description:||1st ed|
|Product dimensions:||4.20(w) x 6.90(h) x 0.60(d)|
About the Author
Major Bruce H. Norton, USMC (Ret.), has been a combat veteran, a career Marine infantry officer, a military museum director, and an adjunct military history professor, and is an award-winning author of numerous books on and about the United States Marines. Serving as a navy corpsman from 1967 to 1972, he participated in more than thirty long-range reconnaissance patrols from 1968 to 1970. Norton was honorably discharged from the navy in 1972, and three days later was enrolled in the Marine Platoon Leaders Class (PLC) Candidate at the College of Charleston, where he earned a BA in U.S. history in 1974. Commissioned a lieutenant of Marines upon graduation, he performed duties as an infantry platoon leader, deep reconnaissance platoon leader, rifle company commander, operations and training officer, battalion executive officer, and various joint staff positions. Following his retirement in 1992, after twenty-four years of military service, he earned a master's degree in military sciences before becoming the director of the MCRD San Diego Command Museum in California. While there, he also taught military history courses at the University of San Diego. In 1996, he received the Brigadier General Robert L. Denig Memorial Distinguished Service Award, presented to him by the United States Marine Corps' Combat Correspondents Association for his contributions as an author and Marine Corps historian. In 2005, he arrived at Quantico and wrote doctrine for the Marine Corps.
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Excerpted from "Force Recon Diary, 1969"
Copyright © 1991 Bruce H. Norton.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
As a junior in college, I have taken a course in the study of the Vietnam War. I asked my father, a Marine Vietnam Vet, what books he'd recommend I read, as a first-hand (no bullshit) account of what actually happened to the men who saw combat. Without a moment of hesitation he said, Read Doc Norton's books on Vietnam. He is, without question, the best primary source to read. He was a Navy Corpsman who served in 3rd Force Recon Company and he has written about a dozen books on Marines and our history. He will put you in the driver's seat, and you will become a part of his recon team as youu read what happened to him and his team mates when they went out on long-range patrols in the A Shau Valley.
My Dad was spot on! Force Recon Diary 1969 and Force Recon Diary, 1970, are the best books I have ever read about what the war experience was like. Why they have never made a movie out of these books is beyond me. They are incredible. If anyone wants to know what it was like, just read these two books. These Marines were only 20 years old, and what they did was unreal. Thier training is described in great detail, the fire-fights are described and the deaths of close friends are described, too. Major Norton has "been there and done that' and it is all captured in his telling the story of his two tours in Vietnam. I hope that he is writing and teaching still. He is a treasure for the Marine Corps. No one has detailed combat and the preparation for it, like he does. Just two great, well-written books. My Father and I salute him for his ability to write so well and tell the stories, without exaggeration and imbellishment. I can recommend that anyone intereseted in the truth, but these books.
I have read numerous 'first-hand' accounts of combat by different men in different wars, Force Recon Diary, 1969, stands at the top of my list for a true depiction of what life was like for Force Recon Marines in 1969 and 1970. This remarkable book is one of eight that that have been written by Maj. Bruce H. 'Doc' Norton, who served as a recon team corpsman during the Vietnam War. As a history teacher, and a veteran of that war, I can assure any reader that what they will receive is a 'no-nonsense' approach to what small unit leadership and combat was like for Norton and his fellow recon team members. I was taken along on the patrols with men like Bishop, Keaveney, and Silva, as Doc tells his story of successes and failures while trying to locate the North Vietnamese soldiers they hunted for two years. It was quite a journey. This is one of the very best books written by a veteran, who was wounded in combat and decorated for heroism on more than one occaision. Buy this book. You will not be able to put it down. Well written.
Force Recon Diary, 1969 has been around for a while, but I must admit it is my favorite of all the books I have read about the Vietnam experience. Major Bruce H. Norton was a Navy corpsman who served with 3rd Force Recon Company as a team member in 1969 and 1970. He has taken great pain to accurately describe the missions that he and his fellow teammates; Bishop, Silva, Keaveney, Furhman and Murray, went on to seek out and kill the NVA. Major Norton has the ability to take the reader along for the ride, a what a ride it is! I have recommended this book to family, friends and students and I have never heard anything but praise for a book that 'tells it like it was.' What 6 young men, who were well-trained, can and did do is nothing short of remarkable. They don't speak of courage, patriotism or honor, they do it all by example. If the folks in Hollywood ever wanted to put a great, true story on the big screen this would be trhe one.Unfortunately the is no creativity left in LA, it's all remakes of the same garbage. They have no further to look than the books that Doc Norton has written about the Marine Corps.
The book was well detailed I really appreciated the way he described his missions in good detail, I couldnt imagine how hard it was for him and his company, to go threw all of that trauma, well written
One of the best books I have read on the life of a Marine. I a must read by all Marines