Veterans of Vietnam's 'Fox Force' join 'Golden Dragons' in scarf exchange
June 4, 2010
SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - "Thank you so much for the welcome home we never got."
These words brought tears to many eyes and touched the hearts of all present at a scarf exchange ceremony, here, recently.
The ceremony, hosted by the 1st Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment "Golden Dragons," was held in honor of the Vietnam-era Battalion Reconnaissance Platoon, known as "Fox Force."
Veterans of Fox Force fought valiantly in Vietnam and Cambodia. As a symbol of their valor under fire, the platoon was awarded red scarves by the Vietnamese army.
Members of the platoon wore their scarves every day in Vietnam, to include during combat operations. The platoon was so effective in combat that the enemy offered a $10,000 bounty for any American Soldier wearing a red scarf.
The surviving members continue to wear their red scarves to this day, as a symbol of cohesion and a remembrance of battles fought and fallen comrades.
Twelve of the surviving members of Fox Force (from 1969-1970) and 35 family members and friends travelled from the mainland to attend the scarf exchange ceremony.
In attendance was retired Col. Victor Robertson Jr., the 1st Bn., 14th Inf. Regt. commander in 1969, and his wife, Lois.
"We, as a unit, have a burning desire to somehow leave a legacy for the Golden Dragons and to pass on our heritage to you and to the current scout platoon Soldiers," wrote retired Lt. Col. John Hedley, the platoon leader at the time.
That desire came to fruition as Fox Force members passed on their scarves, and their legacy, to the current scout platoon.
Retired Col. "Dragon" Robertson and retired Lt. Col. "Fox 6" Hedley spoke about the history and valor of the platoon and of the importance of the ceremony. The day culminated with a battalion luau that provided ample opportunity for bonding of Golden Dragons, past and present.
Check out more photos and connect with the 1-14th Infantry Regiment on <a href="http://www.facebook.com/pages/Schofield-Barracks-Hawaii/1-14-Infantry-Battalion/222880944416">Facebook</a>.