My Grandfather's Will

Justin Logan

Mrs. Bruno

AP English III

4 Nov 2009

My Grandfather’s Will

      In the mid 20th century, the United States of America was in a war against North Viet Nâm and Viet Cong militants fighting to roll back and contain communism, in an attempt to stop the spread of it once and for all. Aided by the United Soviet Socialist Republic, both the Northern Vietnamese Army and Viet Cong militants killed well over 50,000 armed force members of the opposition. This war was fought in Southern Viet Nâm and in the areas bordering Cambodia and Laos, in the dense vegetation of the jungles of Viet Nâm. My grandfather fought in this war through the means of conscription. The will in which my grandfather had possessed during the Viet Nâm War was a vital tool for his survival, but to me it symbolized his strength to overcome adversity.

      My grandfather is now seventy years old, fifty years after the start of the Viet Nâm War. At the age of thirteen, I had heard the first of his many war stories. He told me these war stories sparing no painstaking details, not that I want him to. Over the next years, with more and more stories being told to me from my grandfather, I began to gain a greater understanding of not only the cause of the war but also to the effects it had, directly and indirectly on the world. When this subject, the Viet Nâm War, comes to mind, only one particular story elucidates the reason my grandfather had the strength to overcome an extremely hard time.

      Its 1960, Bernard Martin was just drafted to the United States Army. Going in, Bernard already knew he would have a “twin crisis” to deal with, the intense combat in the dense jungles of Viet Nâm and racial discrimination that was diminishing yet still present and a mediating factor in every decision. Inducted into the Army after only three months of basic training, Private Martin stood six-two and weighed two hundred pounds. Martin, a native of Charleston, North Carolina, received...