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Smither, James (Interviewer)

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Southerland, James W.

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2017-09-15

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Jim Southerland was born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1946 and graduated high school in 1966. He joined the Army on May 19th, 1965. Southerland completed his Basic Training at Fort Polk, Louisiana, and then advanced infantry training at Fort Gordon, Georgia. At Fort Benning, Georgia, he also completed jump school. His first deployment was to Germany where he took part in the Nijmegen March in Holland. After reenlisting, Southerland was deployed to Vietnam with the 1st Brigade, 1st Calvary Division as an RTO (radiotelephone operator) for his platoon leader and eventually became a squad leader. He was involved in the Tet Offensive in early 1968 before his last assignment as an MOS personnel specialist in Saigon. Southerland left Vietnam in April, 1969, and left the service in May, 1969, but remained active in the Virginia National Guard.

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Veterans History Project collection, RHC-27



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