Extract from interview with Carol Dawber, 18 March 2008

Reproduced with permission of Robert Upton

I'd lost a hell of a lot of weight, was run down. The tension's there all the time. You never knew – tomorrow might be the last - if not for you, for somebody else. So you started looking forward to it. You even got to the stage where you'd think, Bugger it, it's 3 o'clock. Let's stop for the day, rather than go on for a little bit longer.

I can remember getting quite close to the end of the tour we got a, got some intelligence that came and told us that there was a large group of enemy, allegedly enemy located at a particular location, and we were to go and check it out. Nobody was the slightest bit interested in going and checking it out, I must say. And so, and this again was Evan [Torrence] – I had a good Company commander – and really it probably only should have been a platoon go down. We got ordered to go and do this, and that's ultimately what we were – we made every excuse: we were too far away, we needed a re-supply of rations – things that wouldn't have worried us, we would have just gone on. If you didn't get re-supplied today, you got re-supplied tomorrow, and you always had enough, spare [can?] lying around in the bottom of your bag to get through to the next morning. A packet of cigarettes if there was nothing to eat.

And Evan said, he brought the whole company together, and we went up there as a company, so you always felt that it was so much better because everybody was there. And nobody – we knew there was nobody in the province that could take on a company, or take on our company, and have any chance, sort of thing. We went up very, very, very, very cautiously, incredibly cautious

Reference: 

Vietnam War Oral History Project, Manatu Taonga Ministry for Culture & Heritage

How to cite this page: 'End of tour - Robert Upton', URL: http://www.vietnamwar.govt.nz/audio/end-tour-interview-with-robert-upton, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 10-Sep-2013