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Dear Marvin,

Thank you for remembering me and including me on you invitation list for the next reunion. I will not be able to make it, but that does not in any way mean that I do not every single day think of you all, the 11th ACR, the other men and women I have had the privlidge to serve with, both as an Enlisted Man and as an officer, and the great US Army.

I retired in February 1986 and I still dream every night that I am with soldiers. I deeply miss you all–and I was honored to have served with you in Vietnam. There is an item I feel you may be interested in sharing with others, and I pass it on now.

I was at an official HQDA dinner in DC (I was the Chief of Signals Intelligence at DA) where one of the senior guests was a Soviet general. The USSR was coming apart and he was asked for his opinion as to the main reasons for Communism failing. After some thought, he replied, “There are a number, but key amoung the is Vietnam.” We were all taken aback and asked for clarification. He (I paraphrase) said, “You fought in Vietnam for over a decade against a most dedicated and capable enemy who was well supported by outside nations, you never lost a single major battle or failed in a campaign, you took tens of thousands dead and many more wounded, you lost and gave to the ARVN great amounts of expensive equipment, you experienced significant anti-war demonstrations at home, you had draft riots — all this for many years and yet you still had young people going to colleges, still produced automobiles and iceboxes, still had free elections and continuous civilian-led governments at all levels, still had an economy that grew at unprecedented rates, and still had an Army which constantly grew in strength and capabilities.

We nearly perished trying to control Afgahanistan. What you did and endured in Vietnam, and how you did it, made us realize that we could never beat you or your form of government or economy. Communism was dead — we had to change.”

So you see, Marvin (and all those of us who served honorably, both in the Services and at home), what we did in Vietnam was not wasted. It was not lost on the rest of the world. The loss of our friends and comrades was not in vain. The greatest possible war the world had ever had to face (US-USSR) was never necessary to be fought. We won the war against Communism in large measure in the jungles, paddies, on the rivers and in the mountains and cities of Vietnam.

You and I! WE WON! And as I tell my son (currently the Division Planner for the 82d), my generation won the war against Communism, with losses for sure, but in a way that precluded millions more. He now must win the current war(s) against drugs, terrorism and aggressions so that his kids (our grand children) can continue to enjoy peace, freedom and prosperity. We won ours! Now it is his turn. And we will support him!

Thank you.

Frank Zachar


Tom Beaven <> Butch,  Thanks for this one. I have always liked and respectedColonel Zachar (In  fact, I was his Sgt Maj for a while in Korea) I was fortunate enough to  serve with him twice, in Germany and later Korea. Thanks again.


Marvin… Thank you kind sir… I do appreciate it – as do several other that I’ve passed these messages along to. Butch Williamson SFC (Ret) 05H4HM9

Cheyenne, Wyoming

<> Well, Frank just had a way to do things like that. I knew him as a Captain  in Bad Aibling in the mid 60’s (when he was the A/Ops Officer and I was the  A/NCOIC of the SIT Section) and finally, when he was Colonel at HQDA and Chief of the SIGINT Division. We only had a speaking relationship in our  first assignment, but in the last, I was the primary SIGINT guy at HQ  FORSCOM (largest Major Command in the Army) and we had some heart-to-heart,  nose-to-nose discussions. I trusted him, he trusted me. Hated to see him  go, but he was frustrated. Had bad news when he had a heart attack, working  with a civilian firm. Glad to know he’s still around–he’s one of the good  guys. Would appreciate knowing how to get in touch with him. By the way,  just in case none of you have heard this before, let me say it again. The  Vietnam scene wasn’t pretty, but I was a professional soldier and it was my  job–maybe not for 2 1/2 yrs, but that’s the way it went. And I never gave  a big rat’s ass about what any civilian in CONUS thought about what I did or did not do over there. Still don’t, never will. So, tell me how to reach  Frank.


James Sessoms

Fayetteville GA

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