Chapter 9
Priest to Speicher

Driving forward took us to Speicher. A German counter attack was happening there and it was decided to start a new Field Hospital even in the midst of chaos. Truly, our Medics were there for us. Fifth Division had made a second river crossing and was attacking Speicher from the west as we drove up from the south. Upon our arrival, the heavy battle was in full progress. I qujck1y reported to a medical Captain and turned over my burden of four wounded. Jogging outside from where the hospital was being set up, I became anxious to join 2nd Platoon and beat back the enemy, but I didn't know where to go. The Captain called out and said, "2nd Platoon is gone, 100% casualties"! Running up to me he then pinned a combat fatigue label on me. What a shock! This jolt took a while to register and for me to realize it had to be true was almost more than I could bear. Even though I felt stunned, a battle of significant proportions was happening nearby. My mind began to plan some way that I could enter into this battle. It was hard withdraw. Mom taught me often to have the courage of my convictions. Now my ability to continue was taken from me. I needed a valid reason to abandon our G.I.'s. This was not satisfactory to me. I needed to learn that the Lord was in control.

Earlier I had fantasized about being an officer and command a Platoon. The least I expected was to excel and be a Staff Sgt. and have my own squad. Being a PFC turned out to be the best after all. I could function more independently and have a very important role as we made our way beating back the enemy. We were not Special Forces but as ordinary G.I.'s we had performed on the highest level and reflecting back no outfit had as many accomplishments.

Returning to Division Headquarters, I was debriefed for two days. The only medicine given me was a knock out capsule the first night. This capsule was to render me unconscious for 24-48 hours. After two hours I showed up in the chow line to everyone's surprise! I was evaluated to be reassigned in the rear and perhaps more combat later. Mixed emotions happened. It was great to be relieved, yet it wasn't complete. Part of my evaluation was "Lindberg is bright, of good character". This information validated my efforts and helped relieve the pressure of my commitment. The battles continued and I was now seasoned and more qualified than ever. Having learned so much, to recap this demonstrates how much.

Chapter 10

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