HARDCOVER EDITION The Early Years, 1950-1967, VOL I Read the review in Marine Corps Gazette Read the review in Leatherneck
General Al Gray - the 29th Commandant of the Marine Corps - served in that billet from 1987 until his retirement in 1991. Through the years he became an inspiring figure for Marines of all ranks, though not much is known of his early days as an enlisted Marine and young officer. In this first of two volumes, Scott Laidig gives a detailed account of Al Gray as a young sergeant in the Amphibious Reconnaissance Platoon through his tour as the Commanding Officer of a Special Intelligence unit in Vietnam in late 1967.
In addition to putting together the early story of Al Gray, Marine, the author has re-told the story of the Vietnam War and its time. Wanting to put Gray's time in Vietnam, and indeed the Marine Corps' actions in Vietnam into proper context, Laidig presents a critique of the war, its leaders and the newsmen who covered it while also providing a different perspective on the South Vietnamese. His account is well-researched and fully referenced, and might lead the reader to investigate new materials emerging about the War that claimed over 56,000 American lives.
Written in a style that promotes interest, this is no dry biography of a great warrior's earliest days in service to our country; rather, it is a fascinating personal account of a Marine Corps legend.