The only 25 series radio military occupational specialty in the company, not already serving one of the platoon commanders, was Hultzer. The only thing I knew about him was that he had been assigned to one of the Project Hundred Thousand privates sent in by special act of the Secretary of Defense. Piper, Hultzer’s charge, could not read or write and was very likely slow in other areas, as well. The Secretary of Defense had been in trouble, back in the world, because the draft was catching too many kids from the middle class, and the Secretary had apparently gained political favor by making sure that every class of America had some skin in the game.

Hultzer tried to report in, but I was too pre-occupied with the mud, the rain, the bleeding ruin of my leech-sucked torso wounds, and the fact that Captain Carruthers, the new company commander of Kilo Company, was actually coming down the cliff face first to supply the ‘relief’ so sorely needed by the supposed ragtag loser company I was commanding.