I was never the soldier my grandfather and father were
I'm a Vietnam veteran and I was in three firefights. I saw some soldiers die but the outcome of the battle was never in doubt. We always beat the Commies on the field. The Commies beat the South Vietnamese not the American army.
I came home in one piece. No drug or alcohol habit no problems whatsoever.
My grandfather couldn't say the same thing. He fought in France during the first world war with the marines. His unit was assigned to hold a hill and the Germans thinking it was a weak point attacked in strength.
The Americans held but at a terrible cost. Less than one-half of the hills defenders survived. Shot to death, blown to bits by artillery and finally gassed. but they held the hill.
Unlike me, my granddad came home a broken man and he died of acute alcoholism at age sixty-two.
My father was an MP during WW2 and he saw action on D-Day he was nearly killed but he survived the battle. Later in the war he found himself at Bastogne. He had to help the other soldiers fight. He survived, but he never spoke of the battle or the war.