I am always a bit surprised to learn
of Cacti who only recently discovered the35th Infantry Regiment
Association. Some gave up on finding old friends; others likely placed
their service in a private place where the experience was not to be
shared. There is a price to be paid for that silence.
There are tangible benefits to meeting
those you served with who also have stories to live by and memories yet
to be processed. Sharing those helps heal. Ordinary men sent to kill
other men do not return feeling ordinary. That is particularly true
about Vietnam and Korea as there was no definitive end point to the war
as defined by WW II.
Our reunions, particularly for those
of us now older, help in the restoration of trust, pride and acceptance.
We enjoy a remarkable “family,” as diverse as it is generous and
helpful. The men and now women possess the wisdom, skills and experience
that provide communities with sound leadership. They are people who
know how to ask the right questions and determine what is genuine.
The point, getting duller as our ranks
thin, is that for years the perception of the Vietnam veteran was that
we were a wholesale lot of damaged goods. That has never been true. Men
suffered, and continue to suffer from what they experienced overseas and
on their return home. It’s tough feeling like an outsider or being
shunned. The latter is particularly painful – ask an Amish person who
has gone ‘English.” It’s emotional torture and produces depression,
anger and anxiety – all PTSD issues.
Our association offers many benefits
to members for a small membership fee. The most important is the
opportunity to associate with those who have trod the same path and
share in the pain of remembering the missing. We may be reluctant to say
it, but collectively we are stronger for the experience.
I am not a “career” veteran. It took
more than 30 years for me to begin looking for men I served with and
wanted to see again. In some cases, I waited too long. They had passed
away. My hope is that each association member and the present
generation of Cacti will appreciate that locating buddies and joining
the organization is about friendship, not living in the past.
For those interested, I maintain a
closed Facebook Group for the 35th Infantry Regiment, meaning
non-members can't access the posts. If you are on Facebook, a Cacti or
Redleg who served with us and want to join the Group, please email me
request by clicking HERE. If you would
rather not participate, I certainly understand. The purpose of the page
is to pay tribute to our fallen, keep association members united and in
routine contact using the social media your children and grandchildren
do. The page is NOT to be used for political commentary or commercial
Bill Henson, President 35th Infantry
2014 Cacti Scholarships
- April 15th Deadline !!
Because of the generous contributions
of our Cacti Members, the Cacti Association Board of Directors has been
able to approve an increase to $1500 per award for three 2014
scholarships. The time for scholarship applications is fast approaching.
Be sure to tell your children/grandchildren of the coming April 15
cutoff date for scholarship applications.
All of our
Cacti families are encouraged to apply for scholarship awards. To be eligible the applicant must:
Be a child, stepchild, grandchild or great-grandchild of an Association
member or a 35th Infantry Regiment member who was killed in action.
Be a graduating high school senior.
Have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.5 (on a 4.0 scale).
Relatives of Association Board members are not eligible.
For more information see the
page of this website, or contact the Chairman, Wiley "Tiny" Dodd
by email at the address Here.
The 35th Infantry Regiment
(Cacti) Association is pleased to announce they have again awarded
$1000.00 scholarships to three deserving high
school graduates. After reviewing the applications received,
scholarships were awarded to:
Gabriela Alicia Santos of Manitou Springs,
Colorado. Gabriela is the granddaughter of
Isidro Salas Santos, Bravo Co 1/35th 1966-67.
Alex Cy Hewit of Mapleton, Illinois.
Alex is the grandson of
Russel Hewit Jr., KIA 21 January 1969 while serving with Delta Co
Alexandria Nicole Alvarez of Fayetteville, Georgia.
Alexandria is the granddaughter of
David Hockett, Bravo Co 1/35th 1966-67.
We congratulate all of our applicants upon their high school
graduations, and especially congratulate
our three awardees.
WAR STORIES SECTION
The War Stories Section has turned
into a huge success with almost 50 stories written by our Cacti Members. Got a “Cacti Story?” It can be a battle story, A funny or
sad story. Just put it down the way you remember it. If you want a
“creative license” to embellish a little you got it. Only rule is not
to be malicious. Submit them to Wiley "Tiny" Dodd by
Spring 2014 Issue of the Cacti Times, John Lorts,
Editor and Bill Henson, Associate Editor, is out.
sample of page one of this issue. If you haven't
seen the electronic color version
Here to see what you're missing. Members wishing to change from
a Mailed to Emailed Times may email Don "Doc" Johnson, our Secretary, to
Cacti Ball - 52 Sponsored to Date - Keep 'em
The Cacti Ball is fast
approaching, May 30th 2014 to be exact.
One thing that has not
changed between our era and today’s Cacti is the buying power of
our wages. For those of us that cannot attend, we can help out
our young Cacti by sponsoring their ticket to the Ball.
For only $60.00 you can make
a Cacti proud to be with their brothers/sisters at this
prestigious event. Checks should be made payable to “The CACTI
Store.” and mailed to:
CACTI Ball 2014
ATTN: LT Loren Bell
91-111 Puaina Place
Ewa Beach, HI 96706
If you rise to this
challenge, please let Pete Birrow know so that we can gauge the
impact that has been made.
So far, two of our
Regimental Association members will be attending along with
their wives. If you too would like to attend, Pete Birrow has
the game plan for you. Just drop him a line at
firstname.lastname@example.org. And he will give you the full details.
Pete is the 35th Infantry Regiment Association's
Liaison to our active duty 2-35th Infantry battalion, and a Past
President of the Association. His personal motto:
“Once You Have Been Pricked By
A Cacti, You Are A Cacti Forever!"
35th Infantry Regiment Monument at Ft Benning Walk of Honor
Monument Dedication Photos Posted (View Here)
Follow the link below to view Video of the Monument
Doc Hall, and Pete Birrow have been gathering KIA Photos for a number of
years. Their work has added immensely to our mission to memorialize our
war dead. But we still need a few more.
Click Here to view a list of
Vietnam KIA photos needed. If you're a fellow Cacti, or a friend or family member,
please consider sending a photo to Dick Arnold at his
War - Gravesite Location Project
Doc Hall and Pete Birrow have
been compiling a list of gravesites for our Vietnam KIAs for some time now.
Through personal visits and searches on the web they have located
hundreds. The information is now available by
Clicking Here. If you have
personal knowledge of a gravesite not found on the list, please contact
Doc Hall at his Email