Extract from interview with Claire Hall, 23 January 2013
Reproduced with permission of Terry Culley
Inaugural troop commander Terry Culley recalls news of the first SAS selection for deployment to Vietnam.
It was so widely accepted as being like a Christmas present that had finally come and that we 26 were the recipients of the present. That we were going to be representing the rest of the squadron being the first ones to be deployed to Vietnam. The fact that it dawned on us later that there were things to do before we could get to Vietnam would happen all in good time. It was just a joyous occasion for those who had been named but there was a sense of foreboding and a sense of being deeply upset by some who thought in their mind that their experience, their ranks, their overall performance in the squadron warranted that they should be in the 26 and they … some of them went away by themselves and had their own private sort of periods of contemplation, others sat in groups and whinged, as they would. But the 26 had already gone off to get their jabs and stabs from the hospital then come back and been told here’s your travel warrant, you’re going home for seven days and when you come back pack your bags, be on the truck — no buses in those days — be on the truck, we’re heading off for jungle training.
Vietnam War Oral History Project, Manatu Taonga Ministry for Culture & Heritage