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Charles W. Henderson
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When America put ground forces into action in Vietnam they sent the Marines first. In March of 1965, no one had any idea of what kind of war, or how difficult a war the United States had entered. Very quickly, however, they did learn that fighting the North Vietnamese and Viet Cong would be a long and difficult struggle. Marine Captain Patrick G. Collins and his men of Company D, 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion ran many of the initial combat patrols beyond the compound fences, learning valuable lessons about this new enemy.

In his book, Marshalling the Faithful, author Charles Henderson takes readers into those gritty first months of the Vietnam ground war with Captain Paddy Collins and his 3rd Recon Marines. His men called him “Mad Man,” and with good reason. Paddy Collins kept them good and scared most of the time with his long range, adventurous patrols, seeking out the enemy in his strongholds. Marshalling the Faithful takes readers on Collins’ and his Marines’ wild adventures while disclosing to readers the answers as to why and how America got involved in the Vietnam War, following it from the initial landings to the buildup and escalation of combat operations. In the midst of this characters like Pulitzer Prize winning photojournalist Eddie Adams and his close friend, Paddy Collins, along with his 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion Marine allow the reader to experience what life in the field was like during those opening days of that long and tragic war.

Critics have acclaimed Marshalling the Faithful as “one of the best examinations of the Vietnam War’s first year ever written.”

 

© 2005 Charles W. Henderson charleshenderson.net