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Stealth Patrol
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From "Stealth Patrol": "He spoke in a sort of clipped cadence, his words tumbling out quickly, one on top of the other; and his voice was deep and throaty, the way a bear might sound, if he could talk, after a night of drinking. 'Basically I'm here recruiting guys for the Lurps.... We operate in teams of five, maybe six, members apiece. In the Lurps, every man counts-and that's why we only take the best.'"Just four months after he arrived in Vietnam in 1968, Bill Shanahan joined the LRPs (Long Range Patrol). The mission of the Lurps, as they were called, was dangerous: Five- or six-man teams were dropped into the dense forest behind enemy lines. With quiet stealth, they observed enemy troop movements and staged ambushes that often ended in fierce firefights. When their mission was accomplished, they called for quick helicopter extraction. Back on base, they debriefed and tried to sleep off the adrenaline. Two days later they were back in the brush. The missions changed from week to week, but every day the goal was the same-stay alive.
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About the Author

Bill Shanahan earned two Bronze Stars while serving in Vietnam with the 74th Infantry Detachment (Long Range Patrol), 173rd Airborne Brigade, and later Co. N, 75th Infantry. He lives in Alabama. John P. Brackin is a freelance writer who has contributed to many magazines. He lives in Birmingham, Alabama. John P. Brackin is a freelance writer who has contributed to many magazines. He lives in Alabama.

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