Vietnam Vet Honored At Fort Drum

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More than 2.7 million men and women in the U.S. military served in one of America's longest wars - the Vietnam War.

Chester Larson of Ohio was one of them.

"They were all great guys. A lot of them didn't make it home," said Larson.

During the Vietnam War, Larson was part of the 4th Battalion, 31st Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team.

The unit, which now calls Fort Drum home, is more commonly known as the "Polar Bears." 

On Friday, Larson's name was added to the Polar Bear's Wall of Heroes at Fort Drum.

"You don't just go out saying I'm going to do this today and save some people, it just happens," said Larson.

Larson was honored with a plaque that will hang on a wall with several other honored soldiers.

He enlisted in the Army in October 1965.

Larson served with A Company 4-31 IN from June 1967 until November 1967 as a rifle platoon leader.

In December 1967, he became the E Company acting commander.

From January 68 through June 68, he served as a heavy weapons platoon leader.                

He was awarded the Combat Infantry Badge, Bronze Star with Valor device & Oak Leaf cluster, Purple Heart, Valorous Unit Citation (for service with the Polar Bears from 15 Nov 1967 to 3 Feb 1968), National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with 3 stars, Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry and the Vietnam Campaign Medal.

Larson served three years in the Army and was discharged as a first lieutenant.

Monday, September 1, 2014
, Watertown, NY

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