VETERAN OF FOREIGN WARS OF THE UNITED STATES
Huntertown VFW Post 11314
KEN L. HENDRICKS
U. S. Air Force
Staff Sergeant (E-5)
1966 – 1970 Non Combat
Giebelstadt & Birkenfeld, Germany and McCord AFB, WA
Military Honors and Awards:
Good Conduct Medal
86th Air Division Airman of the Year
I always feel quite proud when I admit that I am a United States Veteran. It is difficult for me to see the lack of respect that so many today have for the greatest country the world has ever known and more difficult to realize they do not know how they got what they have – at the blood, sweat, and lives of the U. S. Military.
Both stations in Germany were within 100 miles of the Communist East German Republic. Our responsibility was to find, identify, and disable any aircraft that flew over the borders and imposed danger to the NATO forces and/or countries.
We did all the air traffic control up and down the Berlin Corridor since the Berlin wall divided Berlin at the time.
Midnight-1 o’clock in the morning, our shift detected a large group of aircraft flying directly west towards the Czech-German border. An alert was issued and we became prepared to defend Europe. Just abruptly as the aircraft appeared, they began to circle the Czech capitol of Prague. We watched the Russian invasion of Czechoslovakia that night.
I have felt a little short changed because I did not get to Viet Nam to serve although I volunteered 5 times. For those that did, including my brother, Mike, I have nothing but the utmost respect for and find them to be unsung and neglected heroes of the 60s-70s decades.
It was an honor to serve the United States and what it stands for.