W.D. (Bill) Ehrhart’s account of his recent trip back to Vietnam with Ken Takenaga, with whom he served in the Marines in 1967-68, is now on line on Ehrhart’s web site .
“On February 5th, 1968, during the fighting in Hue City, two young Marines were wounded by a North Vietnamese rocket-propelled grenade, ” Ehrhart writes in the introduction to the essay. “Corporal Bill Ehrhart, from a small town in rural Pennsylvania, had arrived in Vietnam almost exactly a year earlier. Corporal Ken Takenaga, who had grown up in the small Japanese city of Yatsushiro, arrived in April 1967.
“In the aftermath of the explosion, Ehrhart, the less seriously wounded of the two, stayed in the fight. Takenaga’s wounds required his immediate evacuation. Forty-three years later, having reunited after decades, the two men traveled together first to Japan, and then to Vietnam. This is the story of their friendship and their journey. “
That’s Takenaga on the left in the above photo, with Ehrhart at Hoi An in July 1967.