Boonie's story comes out after Wayloo presses to get him awarded a medal for bravery when her congressman father comes for a visit. Unfortunately, it also brings a board of inquiry to find out what really went on in the bush: a covert operation in Laos headed by a CIA man whose indiscriminate killing of enemy locals prompted Boonie to kill him, and Dodger and Sweetness covered for him. Meanwhile, McMurphy sees Dodger again when he returns to China Beach as he prepares to go back into action. Also, Frankie befriends Sweetness, who's now a captured deserter. Written by
Did You Know?
The award of Boonie's medal takes it's inspiration from two real Viet Nam War sources. During the My Lai Massacre Warrant Officer One Hugh Thompson, Jr. became aware of ongoing execution of innocent civilians by American soldiers despite his initial disbelief that it was possible. With the support of his two door gunners: Crew Chief (S-4) Glenn Andreotta and Door Gunner (S-4) Lawrence Colburn (who agreed to fire on the soldiers if they fired on Thompson, a court-martial offense) he landed between a group of soldiers and a group of 11 Vietnamese Women, children and old men and convinced the soldiers to let a circling Huey Gunship to land and remove them from the battle (something that was unheard of) to a location 10 miles away. Hugh Thompson Jr. flew back and they were able to save one young boy found in a ditch filled with "100 corpses" and covered in blood (none of it apparently his own). On returning to base Thompson quickly made his commanding officer aware of the execution of "Hundreds of civilians". His commanding Officer asked a few simple questions, dismissed him and he never heard anything about the Massacre. Andreotta was killed in combat 3 weeks later. Thopmson was assigned to fly ever more dangerous combat missions until after his helicopter was shot down for the 4th time he was injured seriously enough to return to the United States. The Army covered up the Massacre and Thompson and his door gunners were awarded the Bronze Star for bravery in combat in the 'official' report. Their Bronze Stars were quietly taken back after the story of the Massacre broke. In 1998, 30 years after the events, the three men were awarded The Soldier's Medal given to any person of the Armed Forces of the United States or of a friendly foreign nation who, while serving in any capacity with the Army of the United States, distinguished himself or herself by heroism not involving actual conflict with an enemy. The mission into Laos is based on the CIA involvement in conducting covert raids on the Ho Chi Minh Trail into Laos and Cambodia using 'sterile' American special forces units (who did not even wear dog tags) This violated stated Official U.S. and Military policy, and international commitments to respect these countries neutrality. See more
Nurse Colleen McMurphy
[unwrapping the pistol she kept for Dodger while he was in the hospital in Japan
So she carefully unwrapped the swaddling clothes and lifted the tiny orphan up to the sunlight.
Sgt. Evan 'Dodger' Winslow
I didn't think you'd give it back.
Nurse Colleen McMurphy
I said I would.