Three local Vietnam Veterans, George Gibson, Jack Mattingly and Dallas Waterfill, will be featured on KET’s new documentary “Kentucky Veterans of the Vietnam War: In Their Own Words,” which premieres tonight, Thursday, Nov. 10, at 9 p.m.
Mattingly joined the U.S. Marines just ten days after graduating from Harrodsburg High School. But his memories from his 13 months in Vietnam are still fresh. “We still smell the smells, we still hear the sounds, you never get over it,” Mattingly said.
Mattingly said he had the “wild idea” to become a Navy Seal and was debating going to jump school. “I got my orders to go to jump school and Vietnam the same day, so I had to make a choice.” Mattingly volunteered for Vietnam in hopes of being placed on the ground. “They put me as a door gunner in a helicopter,” he said laughing.
“There were fun times, but there were a lot of bad times too,” Mattingly said.
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