29 May

Have you ever been in a position where you had to make a decision that might cause many people to lose their lives, including yours?

Bill Cox was my husband until he passed away in December 2022.  This is his story about a difficult decision he had to make while serving as a Captain the U.S. Marine Core. 

Bill was very intelligent, did well in elementary school, enrolled in ROTC throughout high school and earned a full-ride Navy scholarship to college.  After graduation, he was allowed to change from the Navy to the Marine Core to enlist as a commissioned officer.

After serving six years, having risen to the rank of Captain, he reached a point in time where he could resign from the Marines.  Initially, he had intended to make it a career. He went to the commanding officer who would decide his fate.  He was undecided as to what he should do.

Bill asked, "What is my next assignment?"

The answer was, "Vietnam."

Bill replied, "I enlisted to fight in a war if necessary for my country, but the goal of this mismanaged war is flawed.  There is no end in sight.  Therefore, I would like to resign from the Marines."

Years later, I questioned him about this decision.  Bill explained:  "If I had agreed to go to Vietnam, I was told I would be over four platoons.  I would be forced to make decisions that might cost the lives of many men under my command.   I had the courage to make any decision I was compelled to make.; however, I knew that any decision I made could inadvertently create a lot of pain and chaos  in the families of these men, especially if they were killed.  I envisioned my  decisions might create many widows and children without fathers."

Since years had passed, I asked him if he would make the same decision again.

Bill replied, "Watching how the Vietnam War progressed, I think I made a good decision."

For information on the Vietnam War, click on the following link to the History website, which is an excellent source for history buffs.


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