About the Book:
Call Sign Dracula provides an outstanding, valuable and worthy in-depth look into the life of a US Army Infantry soldier serving with the famed 1st Infantry Division (The Big Red One) in Vietnam. It is a genuine, firsthand account of a one-year tour that shows how a soldier grew and matured from an awkward, bewildered, inexperienced, eighteen year-old country “bumpkin” from Kentucky, to a tough, battle hardened, fighting soldier.
You will laugh, cry and stand in awe at the true life experiences shared in this memoir. The awfulness of battle, fear beyond description, the sorrow and anguish of losing friends, extreme weariness, the dealing with the scalding sun, torrential rain, cold, heat, humidity, insects and the daily effort just to maintain sanity were struggles faced virtually every day. And yet, there were the good times. There was the coming together to laugh, joke, and share stories from home. There was the warmth and compassion shown by men to each other in such an unreal environment. You will see where color, race or where you were from had no bearing on the tight-knit group of young men that was formed from the necessity to survive. What a “bunch” they were!
… then the return to home and all the adjustments and struggles to once again fit into a world that was now strange and uncomfortable.
About the Author:
Joseph (Joe) Edmon Fair Jr. was born on September 4, 1950 in Greenwood, Indiana. His parents had moved from a farming area of South Central Kentucky to the Indianapolis area looking for work. At nine months old the family moved to Louisville, KY. Joe attended Brandeis Elementary School and Parkland Junior High School.
At age 12 the family moved back to Adair County, KY where his father once again farmed. He graduated from Adair County High School in May 1968 and entered the US Army in September 1968. Joe served a tour of duty in Vietnam from April 1969 to March 1970 and returned to the US at Fort Meade, Maryland. He married Regnia Gabehart on July 18, 1970. He left the US Army in June 1971.
Joe joined the Ingersoll Rand Company in September 1971 and remained with the company until May 2011. He was the Human Resources Manager his last 16 years. He had two careers going simultaneously as he joined the Kentucky Army National Guard in October 1974 serving with Bravo Battery and the Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 1st Battalion, 623rd Field Artillery and remained with the guard until he retired as a First Sergeant E-8 in May 1997. He served in Desert Shield and Desert Storm during the Gulf War from December 1990 to April 1991 with the guard unit.
Joe and Regnia have three children and seven grandchildren. His retirement time is spent enjoying his family (chasing grandchildren), researching and writing about his time in Vietnam, contacting fellow Vietnam soldiers and staying in contact with soldiers he served with in the Kentucky Army National Guard. He also enjoys playing rhythm guitar and singing in a music group called “Ruff-Cut.”
What Others Are Saying:
“As editor, you must make your own decision, of course. As a professional novelist and non-fiction writer for over thirty years (Doubleday, St. Martin’s Press, et. al.) I found a straightforward clarity and heart in Joe Fair’s account of his war that hooked me and kept me reading straight through to the end. If I were writing a war novel and wanted to include excerpts from a soldier’s diary, I would hope to write it exactly as Joe wrote this memoir. It has the authentic ring of truth—something no amount of polished “professional” writing could hope to improve on.” — Steven Spruill
“Joe Fair’s narrative about his year in Vietnam is well written. He tells it as it was with no embellishments. In reading it I could picture myself back in Vietnam and what some of my own experiences were. I served with headquarters company of the 2nd Battalion, 2nd Infantry which is the sister battalion to the one Joe writes about. It is only the second book written that shares a personal experience serving with the 1st Battalion, 2nd Infantry, 1st Infantry Division in Vietnam. As the historian for the 2nd Infantry Association, I can attest that Joe’s narrative is a wonderful addition to the long and glorious history of the 2nd Infantry Regiment and is well worth reading. He scored a winner with his story!” — Lawrence R. Grzywinski, Historian, 2nd Infantry Regiment Association, HHC 2/2, RVN 66-67
“Joe Fair’s memoir of his service as an infantryman in Vietnam with the Big Red One is a compelling, authentic, straight forward and gritty account of a year (1969) of that war. Only 18 when he arrived and joined the “Black Scarves” of Company A, 1st Battalion, 2d Infantry, Joe recounts his evolution from a scared newbie to a seasoned soldier and squad leader. The many contacts and casualties are grim reminders that 1969 (well after the Tet Offensive of January, 1968, and the shift to pacification and Vietnamization) was America’s deadliest year of the war. Three things stand out in this frank and balanced account – Joe’s high regard for the men with whom he served; their tremendous competence and dedication to soldiering; and the deep loss they felt as buddies left the battlefield among the dead and wounded. Joe Fair was a modest but excellent soldier, one of thousands who served in Vietnam, and this is an excellent read.” — Paul H. Herbert, Ph.D., Colonel, US Army (Retired), Executive Director, First Division Museum at Cantigny
Call Sign Dracula: My Tour with the Black Scarves April 1969 to March 1970
Authored by Joe Fair
List Price: $16.95
5.5″ x 8.5″ (13.97 x 21.59 cm)
Black & White on White paper
Sunbury Press, Inc.
BISAC: History / Military / Vietnam War
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