82nd Airborne Division (Vietnam) Golden Brigade – Vietnam 1968 – 1969

About the Golden Brigade

The members of the Golden Brigade Chapter of the 82nd Airborne Division Association were are all assigned to the 3rd Brigade of the Division during its Tour of Duty in Vietnam from February 1968 until redeployment to the United States 22 months later in December 1969.

The Golden Brigade arrived to a country in flames – the communist North Vietnamese TET offensive of 1968 was being written in blood. The Golden Brigade fought bravely and successfully to open the Hai Van Pass, opening the roads to the A Shau Valley to control Nui Khe Mountain. Hue-Phu Bai, Perfume River, Street Without Joy, A Shau Valley, Saigon, Hoc Mon Bridge, Cu-Chi, Hobo Woods, Iron Triangle, Michelin Rubber Plantation, Song Be River and Cambodian border. These were just a few of the areas where we conquered our enemy in every encounter and tried to help rebuild a nation.

Here you will find our history, our memories and something of our hearts and souls. We welcome all visitors and hope that you will find our story to be enlightening. We especially want to bring home those who have not been in contact with their brothers for these many years. If you know of someone who served with us in Vietnam, please let them know that we are looking for them!

The implication that our unit was blessed with good fortune and apparently always did things right was made in late 1967 by General John Throckmorton, CG of the XVIII Airborne Corps. bud.web.jpgThat year, we had jumped the entire unit on to Vieques Island near Puerto Rico, trained under fire for two weeks after the jump, been deployed as a unit to Detroit during the riot (where everything turned out just fine), sent a detachment to the Congo to defend the U.S. Embassy there, been alerted twice for rapid overseas deployment, and been the host unit for the annual demonstration by the 82nd for VIP’s from around the country. In short, we were always busy, and we always seemed to be the brigade on alert when things happened. Thus, General Throckmorton stopped me one time as we were getting to do something dramatic (I forget which incident it was) and said, “Bolling, everything your brigade touches turns to gold, doesn’t it?” I agreed, but my intelligence sergeant, Duke Dewey, grabbed hold of that expression, and from that moment on, we were the Golden Brigade. So, credit for creation of the name must go to General Throckmorton and Sergeant Dewey. Credit for doing things right must go to the troopers who served their unit so well.

MG Alexander R. Bolling