Student Author(s)

Victoria Henry

Faculty Mentor(s)

Dr. Fred Johnson III

Document Type


Event Date



Vietnam Veteran Sergeant Richard Brokaw served in the United States Army during a turbulent period of the latter 20th century. Like many born in the post-WWII years, he entered the service desiring to do his patriotic duty, but the complexities of the Vietnam Era forever changed him and his nation. Framed by the larger Cold War between the United States and its North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies, and the Soviet Union and its allies, Vietnam exemplified the struggle for ideological and strategic global dominance. The nebulous aims of policy leaders compounded by increasing numbers of dead and wounded, and a divisive military draft, moved young people, especially college students, to directly resist. For the men and women who joined the military as volunteers or as draftees, the social changes in the United States added to the burdens of their military service. Most performed their duties to the best of their abilities to uphold and defend the United States Constitution. Regardless of their political beliefs or feelings about Vietnam, they did their duty with honor and integrity. Sergeant Richard Brokaw was one of those persons. While not serving directly in Vietnam, he performed valuable intelligence work as it pertained to data collection against America’s other Cold War rival: China. As a significant ally of North Vietnam, China’s actions had significant consequences for U.S. personnel in Vietnam. This project, based on personal interviews, recounts the experiences, and contributions, of Vietnam Era Veteran Sergeant Richard Brokaw.