THE FACT THAT I COULD SHOOT, and shoot well, made it imperative for me to be present when decisions were being made about the feasibility of taking out VC sentries at different distances before an attack. My opinion was considered a best-case-scenario gauge of a campaign's promise, as commanders squinted at me and tried to decide whether I myself would make it (intelligence handed them statistics on probable percentage of casualties), or if a lesser marksman would take the first shot.

pssst. . .sign the guestbook!