C Company, 4th/47th Battalion, 2nd Brigade
Introduction – As a regular line trooper, I would have had very limited interaction with our Company Commander. So, I really never knew Captain Herb Lind until I met him two years ago when I attended my first Charlie Company Reunion. I was immediately struck by the fact that he had barely changed from the first day that I ever saw him. And that day, June 19, 1967, was truly a memorable one, indeed. We were caught in an ambush out in open rice paddies from a large and well entrenched enemy force just on the other side of a small river. Everyone had scrambled to seek cover behind rice paddy dikes that criss crossed our general area and as the battle raged casualties and downed choppers began to mount up.
Finally, by late afternoon the call came to return to our boats. I recall Mario Lopez and I trudging back together dragging a poncho full of weapons, equipment and ammo that we had collected from our wounded and dead buddies. As we approached the boats and as Charlie Company troopers scrambled aboard, there was Captain Lind standing there just as cool as could be. I remember remarking to him, “Thank God we are going back to the ship”. Captain Lind wryly retorted, “We’re assaulting the other side”. Well, at that moment, I thought none of us would possibly see the Sun set that day.
As it turned out, Herb’s decisive leadership skills provided a brilliant maneuver – Charlie Company crossed the river and promptly routed the remnants of a numerically superior enemy force from their fortified bunkers. Many years later, Jack Benedick and I discussed that battle and Jack informed me that he and the other Charlie Company Platoon Leaders, afterwards, referred to Captain Lind as “Cool Herbert”. Jack told me that they were amazed at Captain Lind’s calmness as the battle raged with hot metal flyin’ everywhere; constantly exposing himself to enemy fire, Captain Lind somehow seemed impervious while numerous Charlie Company troopers were wounded or killed. Thankfully, Herb proved to be an excellent company commander, especially under fire, and amazingly enough, he had just taken over Charlie Company from Captain Rollo Larson just a few weeks prior to the June 19th battle.
During Herb’s 2nd Tour of Duty, August 1969 to August 1970, while assigned as a Senior Advisor at Tam Key, he was injured from a landmine explosion which threw him approximately 30 feet. The explosion severely damaged his hearing until the tissue finally grew back – Becky maintains to this day that he actually developed “selective hearing” – haha. Later on, Herb was promoted to Major and one of his key assignments was at Fort Benning where he played a large role in developing the operating manual for “The Infantry Fighting Vehicle”, now known as the Bradley. After 24 years of service, Herb retired in 1985 and still lives near Fort Riley, Kansas – in talking with Herb, I have the idea that Herb truly loved the U.S. Army and being near our old Fort must surely provide him a certain amount of serenity. Today, he and Becky are living life to the fullest while enjoying their kids and grandkids and camping and fishing as often as possible. Herb is also busy as Church Treasurer, member of the local American Legion Chapter, Masonic Lodge and Military Officer’s Association of America.
Herb, from all of your ole Charlie Company troopers, many thanks for being a courageous and clever leader; certainly, your decisiveness and grit saved many lives. God Bless you, Herb Lind.
Bill Reynolds – September 20, 2003
|Letter to Becky Lind from Mike O’Gara dated May 15, 2015 (Mike was Captain Lind’s RTO in Vietnam)|
Our deepest condolences go to you, Mark and Tara. I know what a terrible loss this is for you, but at
the same time I’m relieved that Herb’s suffering has ended.
I apologize for being so delinquent in writing, but quite frankly I was at a loss for words and perhaps in
a bit of denial. It really hit me yesterday when I sat down for my weekly call to Herb and realized that
part of my life is no more.
I will miss those weekly phone calls, but will always be grateful to have had them.
Herb fought the good fight for 19 years, but even he could not win this one. In my mind it is the only
fight he couldn’t win. The fight is over and now Herb can get the rest and reward he so richly
deserves.Herb was a great leader and a better man. I feel honored to have served with him and to be able to
call him a friend. I will miss him dearly
“Charlie 6 Oscar” (the last time I will ever use that name)