Andrew “Andy” Ladak

In 1969, Andy graduated with a degree in commercial art – and with an ROTC commission as an infantry second lieutenant. Airborne school, Ranger school and jungle school followed. Then, in ‘70, he went to war and served as an infantry platoon leader in Vietnam. Andy got through it, came home, and got on with his life, which included graduate school, work, and marriage. He also spent about 12 years in an Army Reserve Special Forces unit, finally leaving in ‘83 as a Captain.

His military and wartime experience, however, continued to haunt him – not in a negative or traumatic way, but in a bittersweet way. One day in 1994, Andy received a call from one of the men who had served under him in ‘Nam and who had undertaken a near-hopeless task of trying to locate some of the men he had fought with almost 25 years earlier. That wonderful, entirely unexpected phone call led to a series of reunions with an ever-larger circle of soldiers from Andy’s rifle company. The rekindling of camaraderie forged under fire, the sharing and comparing of hazy memories, and the mourning of dead comrades have also spurred him to try his hand at poetry to try to express some of the feelings and emotions inspired by war.

Andy is retired now, is as busy as ever. Among other things, including wife-assigned missions, he’s teaching at a local college, which he enjoys tremendously.

Index of Writings