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Sergeant | Marine Corps


Red clay seems to penetrate and cling to every pore in the skin and fiber in clothing on the Khe Sanh plateau, and though the dirt and stains eventually faded, the memories did not.  Before the siege, Ed was the model image of a Marine with determined features, muscles under his flak vest through which his bare arms extended, and a classic crew cut. After five months of constant shelling, he had changed slightly in appearance, now twenty pounds lighter, disheveled hair, and a sullen stare below the brim of his helmet.

He left the combat base to return home and finished his career as a Marine Security Guard, most notably at the U.S. embassy in Moscow where he discovered that the Russians were secretly microwaving Marines, sparking a lifelong quest to uncover the truth about these events.  Following his service, he was a field agent for the CIA - though the agency can neither confirm nor deny his employment or assignments.

Lawida (center) with Craig Tourte (left) at Khe Sanh.  Courtesy Craig Tourte.

Photo taken by Thomas Horchler - leaving Khe Sanh Combat Base after Siege, April 1968. 

L to R (Front): Beryl H. Bushaw, Sgt. Michael Secli, Craig Tourte (Back) William Poland, Edward Lawida, Pedro Padilla.

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