Dan Mendenhall of US Navy

So many movies have been made about American servicemen’s experiences in the Vietnam War. One of the common elements of many of these movies is the PT boats. These light gunboats were used by the US to move up and down the many tight, jungle-choked rivers of the region. PT Boats are common in Vietnam movies because they were hotbeds of action: the boats and their crews motored up and down rivers, in and out of enemy territories, and frequently fell under severe enemy fire. A calm and serene day cruising on the river could explode into a fight for life in the blink of an eye. Today we are saluting Dan Mendenhall of The United States Navy who was one of these brave PT boat crew members. In fact, he was the head gunner on his boat. Dan says the action was frequent, and in one particular engagement his boat was ambushed and Dan was shot in the leg. They lost the Captain of the boat and a junior gunner in the fight, but Dan helped save the remaining crew members and get the boat to safety. Dan now resided in Kahlotus, Washington, a small quiet town in South Eastern part of the state. He is proud of his service and his contribution, and also sad for the sacrifice of his friends and boat-mates who didn’t return. Dan witnessed the action, the pain, and the loss of war. He lost friends and comrades, and he did all of this so that he could return to the America that he loves, and so that we all have the chance to enjoy our freedoms. Today we Salute Dan Mendenhall of the United States Navy.