Del “Abe” Jones

SOLDIER’S SOLDIER

Colonel David H. “Hack” Hackworth
Colonel David H. “Hack” Hackworth
1930 – 2005
In Nineteen hundred, thirty
Born on Armistice Day
Both parents died before year one
And Grandmother showed him the way.

Raised on tales of the Revolution
The Old West and Depression
Shined Soldier’s shoes in Santa Monica
And began his Army Lessons.

They adopted him as mascot
And had a Uniform made to suit
At age ten, “knew my destiny”
The youngest Army recruit.

At fourteen a Merchant Marine
Near the end of World War Two
At fifteen, joined the Army
Knew what he wanted to do.

Trained by the tough non-coms
Who’d fought that War and won
Taught him to party all night long
Then fall out, in shape, at dawn.

Twenty-six years he served
With seven in Combat
On a level with York and Murphy
Was where this Hero sat.

Two DSCs, ten Silver Stars
Eight Bronze and eight Purple Hearts
Three apps for the Medal Of Honor
And an Infantry Badge for starts.

A Battlefield Commission
During the Korean War
The youngest Army Captain
He knew what “rank” was for.

Then the youngest Bird Colonel
In the rice paddies of Nam
He was always out in front
And was never an “also-ran”.

He led by his great example
As a fighting machine
And his Men readily followed
When they saw what they had seen.

He was a profile in courage
With a call sign of “Steel Six”
He turned the hopeless 4/39
To the “Hardcore Battalion” with his tricks.

At first they thought, “this lifer
Is out to get us all killed.”
They put a price on his head
Before his mission was fulfilled.

With a Battlefield reputation
To be reckoned with and heard
He spoke out against Vietnam
A “bad” War was his word.

He spent five years in-country
And he knew what he spoke about
He said that, “it can’t be won”
And “we need to get out.”

A critic of incompetence
In the Military High Command
But was endeared to the Troops
As an advocate for the Enlisted Man.

He retired from the Army
To a farm down in Australia
Won the U.N. Medal of Peace
To add to his Military regalia.

A much honored Journalist
And an entrepreneur
Successful at all he did
And he gave his all for sure.

He returned to the States
To marry his one Great Love
And all who saw them together
Said he thought her sent from above.

They were the driving Force
Behind Military Reform
“Soldiers for the Truth”
An org way beyond the norm.

They defend the ordinary Soldier
And strive to update our Battle Plan
Focused on bringing them home safely
Down to each fighting Woman and Man.

But Vietnam finally killed him
With Cancer from “Agent Blue”
Which the Pentagon will deny
Just like they always seem to do.

His Mission may be over
At least here, in this World
But his Legacy will Live on
After the Flag he Loved is furled.

Author's Note: For more about Hack, visit http://www.hackworth.com/