Patrick Cosper

Patrick CosperPatrick lives in Biloxi, Mississippi, U.S.A.

During the year of 1969 through 1970, Patrick was assigned as a navy corpsman to the US Marines in Viet Nam. He served in the 1st Marine Division, 5th Regiment, 1st Battalion, Charlie Company, in 1st Platoon with 40 other marines, and his duty was to supply medical aid to wounded or sick Marines. His company’s AO was 30 miles southwest of Da Nang in an area infested with NVA, called “Arizona Territory”; their base was at An Hoa, across the river from Arizona Territory.

If a Marine called “Corpsman Up” for aid, those who responded were at risk from NVA snipers. For this reason they changed their names to marine animals like; Doc Whale, Doc Flipper, Doc Squid, etc… Patrick’s nickname during that time was “Doc Flipper”.

Born a construction worker’s son in Texas, his family moved all over the country while Patrick was growing up. After school, Patrick joined the Navy to ride out the war on a ship. The Navy didn’t tell him they provide medical service for the Marine Corps. Consequently, he ended up with a rifle company in the jungles of Viet Nam instead of on a ship. During his tour of duty he was wounded three times; once by the enemy and twice by friendly. After returning to civilian life, Patrick finished college, and obtained a job in an administrative position for the Louisiana State Government, where he worked for 35 years. Patrick, who enjoys art, is now retired but works as a landscape artist.

Patrick “Doc Flipper” Cosper: Vietnam 1969-1970REMEMBRANCE

Guns thunder, shrapnel shards pierce the air,
Lives are shattered, filled beyond imaginable despair,
Men scramble for cover any and everywhere,
Glazed eyes scan outward the “thousand yard stare”

Fear creeps inward, longing for the “World”,
Where hippies cries of “End the War” are hurled,
“Incoming” shatters quiet, where the brave are curled,
In that distant place where “Old Glory” was unfurled

Souls are searched, looking for mortal relief,
Telling God, “Please save me, I’ll enrich my belief’,
If they must die for country and placed somewhere beneath,
Then send their souls to heaven and the rest to the bequeathed

The sounds of war have lifted, the years have now come to past,
Soldiers still train to fight if peace is not to last,
Pray that the die for war is not forever cast,
That our children shall not know the sound of bullets, bombs, and blasts

I found a wall with lists of friends who by fate did die,
It brings back memories, sad and happy that make men want to cry,
The sky is now blue and safe as I breathe a heartfelt sigh,
Knowing my fellow comrades are seated next to Jesus, perched on high

Semper Fi/ Anchors Away