2022 Veteran’s Day QOV Program
Andrew Robert Laffoon
Robert Laffoon served in the United States Army during the Vietnam era from 1968 to 1969, including activated Army National Guard/reservist. He served overseas in Vietnam, in the 4th infantry division, 2nd battalion, 9th artillery battery, moving every 2 weeks. He experienced several close calls, including a 400-man suicide ground attack, in which 28 servicemen lost their lives, and 56 others were wounded. He survived several helicopters that were shot down during another attack. He survived an attack by a man-eating tiger. Robert was exposed to agent orange several times, which has now affected his nervous system in his legs & arms.
Robert earned the rank of E5 Specialist 5th class and was honorably discharged in November 1969.
He received the Vietnam Combat Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, 2 overseas bars, Marksman Medal on the M14 & M16, his unit received a citation with a red braid on the uniform for outstanding performance.
Thank you for your service, Robert.
Steve Springer served in the United States Navy from August 1969 to July 1973. Most of his time in the service was spent aboard the USS Lexington CVT16 which was a naval training carrier in the Gulf of Mexico. He served as SLO (Starboard Lifeboat Coxen) meaning he drove the lifeboat.
Steve was honorably discharged in July 1973 with the rank of E5.
Thank You for your service, Steve.
George Behnke joined the United States Army as a Junior in High School. He started serving in November 1957 and was sent to Ft Leonardwood Missouri for 8 weeks of basic training. He was then sent to Fort Ord near Monterey California where he had 6 months of active duty, then released April 1961. George was with the reserves out of Canton, Missouri, for 1 month, then did 2 weeks of training each summer at Camp McCoy for the next 5 ½ years while on standby.
Thank you for your service, George.
Stanley Jenkins enlisted in the United States Navy February 23, 1967. Boot camp was at the Great Lakes, and from there he went to Long Beach California where he boarded the USS Inflict MSO456 Mine Sweeper. Stanley then transferred to shore duty in Vietnam and went through Combat Infantry training before flying to Vietnam. He spent several months at a base at Chulai, Vietnam, where he was part of the NSAD (Naval Support Activity Detachment security and POL security at a tank farm.
After returning to the states, he boarded the USS Shields DD590 at San Diego, California. He then spent 3 years in the Navy Reserves out of Davenport, Iowa, before transferring to the Army and the 224th Combat Engineers Army Reserves/National Guard in Keokuk, Iowa. Stanley retired from the Reserves out of Quincy, Illinois, December 1994, for a total of 27 years of service with the rank of E7 Seargent 1st Class. Much of this time was spent as a Drill Seargent.
His awards include Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Ribbon, National Defense Medal.
Thank You for your service, Stanley
Chris enlisted in the United States Army March 1985 and served until May 1989.
Basic training was at Fort Bliss Texas. He then moved to Main Post to complete 9 months of A.I.T. training as a Radar, Computer and Tactical Display Mechanic for the Hawk Missile System.
March 1986 until April 1988 Chris served with the 1st Air Defense Artillery Unit in the little town of Butzweiler, Germany. Then back to Ft Bliss Texas to serve with the 11th Brigade Air Defense Artillery unit. He fulfilled his term of service May 1989 having attained the rank of Seargent (E5).
Chris awards include the Army Service Ribbon, Riffle M-16 Expert Badge, Hand Grenade- Sharpshooter Badge, Overseas Service Ribbon, Army Good Conduct Medal, Drivers Badge, Army Achievement Medal/4th Oak Cluster, Army Achievement Medal/5th Oak Cluster, and the Army Commendation Medal.
Chris enjoyed meeting people from all over the United States and remains in contact with some of those he served with, plus thankful for the opportunity to travel and live outside the U.S.
Thank You for your service, Chris.
Dennis was drafted into the Army and started serving in June 1969. His service included time at Fort Leonard Wood MO; Fort Ord, CA; Fort Bennings, GA; and Vietnam.
While in Vietnam, Dennis was a Scout Dog Handler. A Scout Dog Handler was the lead person who was responsible for the safety of the company going from point A to point B. The scout dog handler was also responsible for carrying food and water for both his dog and himself when they were out in the field. At night when Dennis stopped, he would tie his dog to his foot so that if the dog sensed something, Dennis would be alerted. To this day, Dennis gets a little jumpy if someone pulls on his leg while he is sleeping. One of his dogs was killed in action but saved Dennis’ life along with the soldiers behind him.
Dennis achieved the rank of Seargent E5 when he was discharged in April 1971. His awards include: Vietnam Service Medal; Army Commendation Medal; Combat Infantry Badge; Army Sharpshooter Badge M-14; Army Expert Marksmanship Badge M-16; National Defense Service Medal; Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal, and Overseas Service Bar.
Thank You for your service, Dennis.