Vietnam (VN) – U.S. Army Dec. 1968 through March 1970: Combat Medic, Specialist 5
Theodore (Ted) F. Spriggs Jr., known as “Doc Spriggs” by his fellow soldiers, was born in North Dakota in 1942 and grew up in Fullerton, California. After joining the Army, Ted got his A-School at the Medical Training Center at Fort Sam Houston, TX. He went on to serve as a Medic with the HHC & Bravo Companies, 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment (2/327 Infantry) of the 101st Airborne Division.
Most of Ted’s tours were in mountainous, malaria-infested triple-canopy jungle west of Hue and along the famous “Yellow Brick Road” into the A Sầu Valley near the Laotian border. He operated out of Camp Eagle and was involved in the Tet Offensive in 1968, Dong Ap Bia “Hamburger Hill” in 1969 and the infamous “Sump Hill” campaign against Việt Cộng guerillas in the southern jungle sweep.
At one time he was a volunteer medic with a long range patrol, sniper team consisting of 4 people dropped thirty or forty klicks (1 klick = 1 kilometer = .62 miles: .62 x 40 = 24.8 miles) into the remote jungle areas outside of Huế and Đà Nẵng. He quit this operation after a short time because it was too dangerous.
Ted was also active with the MEDCAP (Medical Civilian Assistance Program) in the remote villages of Phú Lộc District outside of Hue and Phu Bai northwest of Đà Nẵng, offering inoculations and medical sick-call in areas where there were no doctors or any other type of medical help.
Ted at Firebase Birmingham on the tarmac after a Combat Assault into the A Sầu Valley along the Laotian Border in July of 1969.
Insides of the M15 aid bag carried by all combat medics of the 101st ABN Division. This bag weighed about 55 lbs and was carried on top of the required standard load. The total weight was about 120 lbs, so it was a major load for somebody who weighed only 155 lbs. at the time. It’s figured that medics burned about 5,000 calories per day under these conditions. Medics carried this load about 10 hours every day. There were no weekends off in the war zone!
Medals and Honors: Combat Medics Badge, Air Medal w/cluster, Bronze Star, Army Commendation Medal, National Defense and Vietnam Service Medals, two Overseas Bars, Expert Marksmanship for M-14 and M-16.