Valor in Vietnam by Allen B. Clark | Books in Review

Allen B. Clark graduated from West Point in 1963. He served in intelligence with the 5th Special Forces Group in Vietnam in 1966-67 and was severely wounded. His new book, Valor in Vietnam: Chronicles of Honor, Courage and Sacrifice, 1962-1977 (Casemate, 288 pp., $29.95), consists of a nineteen chapters, each of which contains a true Vietnam War story.

“Herein are first-hand narratives by Vietnam War participants, ” Clark says in his Introduction, “highly intense, emotional, and personal stories.” This “is the Vietnam War as seen through the eyes of people who experienced it. It is my hope and prayer that these stories reflect the commitment, honor, and dedication with which we performed out duty in the Vietnam War.”

What the narratives also reflect is a view of the war as seen primarily through the thoughts and deeds of officers. Eighteen of the twenty war veterans chronicled in the book are former commissioned officers. The only enlisted men Clark concerns himself with are “legendary Vietnam warrior” SSG Patrick Tadina, who served in the war for five years, and Spec4s Robert Fleming, “a battle-hardened young [173rd Airborne] paratrooper, ” and James W. “Jess” Jones, a 101st Airborne Division medic.

—Marc Leepson

The author’s website is

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