• Richie Perry lives in Bronx, New York. He lives with his mother and little brother Kenny.• Perry is a very bright student. And despite his teachers encouraging to go to college, he joins the army to support his family. <
• Perry was originally suppose to go to Germany but was shipped off to Vietnam. There, his best friend is Peewee Gates.• They both hear and believe in the rumors that the Vietnam War is going to end soon. However, they still have along way to go.
• Despite having an “easy job” they encounter terrible situations. On their first patrol, a trooper is killed by a land mine.• Perry tries to write to his family, but can’t put the truth down.
• In a patrol, Perry is wounded and sent to a hospital for a peaceful recuperating.• After he is declared healthy, he is temporarily sent to another squad as his original is on duty. This squad is used for heavy duty patrol. And during one particular patrol, the team is split into two. Perry’s side mistakes the rest of the team as the enemy. And they open fire. This episode left Perry scared as he stared at the wounded men on the ground.
• When Perry is finally transferred back, he is regrouped with his friends. He returns to find their leader was sent back to the States. And their new leader, Sgt. Dongan, is racist towards blacks. He makes every black do the dangers jobs.• However, the squad, glad to have a friendly face back, bonds together and repels Sgt. Dongan’s racist acts.
• On a patrol, the squad is ambushed by a group of Vietcong. They make it all out alive, except for Dongan. They then get a new commander, someone from their own squad, Brunner.• Their patrols are all fine until a patrol at night.
• The squad is walking up a river when they’re ambushed by an entire battalion of enemy troops. Outnumbered, their leader calls a full retreat. However, Perry and Peewee are separated from the squad.• With nothing else to do, they hole up and hope that the enemy doesn’t find them. They wait until nightfall to make their escape.
• They escape unnoticed but when they get to the air where a chopper is suppose to meet them, they run into a problem. A fellow trooper from their squad is found tied to a tree. Although they can’t see them, they know that the enemy has set up a trap. Once the chopper arrives, the friends and the chopper unleash all they have to save themselves. While they all get back safely, Perry and Peewee are injured, badly.
• Perry and Peewee are injured badly in this firefight.• They are declared unable to continue service so they are sent home, in an airplane with coffins.• Despite this ugly ending, they both are glad to be back in the States. Perry has raised enough money for his brother Kenny to go to school.