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Books by Lt. Col. John C. Hedley (Ret.)

  • From the Shadows: A Tribute to the 1968 West Point Graduates Who Gave Their Lives in Vietnam

    When the Class of 1968 entered West Point in 1964, the country of Vietnam was basically an unknown. During their four years at the academy, some 550,000 young Americans were deployed to that formerly unknown land, while back home the country became embroiled in racial strife and a growing counterculture movement that swept across the continent.

    Imbued with the ideals of the academy’s motto, “Duty, Honor, Country,” and their class motto, “No task too great for ’68, ” the young officers of the Class of ’68 went off to lead America’s young soldiers in intense, close-quarter jungle combat. During three years, the class lost twenty from their ranks.

    This is the story of their all-too-short lives-from growing up in the post-World War II bloom of peace and security to their eventual loss in Vietnam. They graduated from West Point eager to start their lives. Most died heroically while leading from the front or flying into intense ground fire to protect others. This is an American tale of dedication and courage.

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John Hedley's Army career included a combat tour in Vietnam, a company command in the 3rd US Infantry, the Old Guard, a college ROTC instructor, a liaison to the Japanese Joint Chiefs of Staff, several other command and staff positions, and being inspector general for an infantry division and major installation. His combat awards include the Silver Star, the Bronze Star with "V" and two oak leaf clusters, the Air Medal, the Army Commendation Medal with "V", and the Combat Infantryman's Badge. He has previously published Saddle Up! The Story of a Red Scarf about the young men he was privileged to lead in Vietnam. He worked for a major US company in Japan for ten years. He has been a featured guest speaker for several years. He holds a master's degree in Asian History from Georgia State University. John has been married to his wife, Margie, for forty-one years, and they have three grown children. John and his family lived in Japan for a total of thirteen years.