By Jordan Haeger
Blas Ortiz had served as an adviser in Okinawa for a few months in 1963 when his unit, Co. E, 2nd Battalion, 27th Marines, 5th Marine Division, was rounded up, issued live ammo and told they would be on the next flight to Vietnam.
When his battalion landed on the shores of Vietnam, they were greeted with gunfire.
“It wasn’t a picnic,” Ortiz said. “No sightseeing.”