I Was Wounded in Vietnam

On September 23,1968, about 12:00 in the afternoon, I was wounded in Vietnam. I was an Army Field Artillery officer attached to an armored cavalry battalion. As a forward observer, I was responsible for artillery support. We came under enemy fire and I was wounded in the chest by small arms fire.The impact of the bullet knocked me down and the fire fight continued, while my Radio Telephone Operator bandaged my chest and gave me a shot of morphine. He laid me in the bottom of a tracked vehicle as the fighting elevated. It took about 15-30 minutes to get a helicopter evacuation in to take me and the other wounded to the city of Chu Lai where there was a hospital. During this entire time I was conscious although I almost lost consciousness several times.

While laying there waiting to be evacuated, my whole brief life of 23 years passed in front of me. I prayed to God to let me live. I was newly married and prayed that He would let me return to my wife. God gave me another chance that day. I don’t remember when I was introduced to Padre Pio, but I do know that Padre Pio died on September 23, 1968 and I believe that he died about the same time that God gave me a second chance. I have a special devotion to Padre Pio and daily incorporate his Efficacious Novena to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and his meditation after Holy Communion into my daily prayer life.

Gerry Murphy

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