Two Week Trip: Hawaii to Vietnam


The USAT General Walker was commissioned in 1945 and was used in the Korean War

and Vietnam War. Boarded the ship in Hawaii with the 25th Infantry Division in January of

 1966. It took 14 days at 500 miles a day to make the 7,000 mile trip to Vietnam. The USAT

  General Walker was scrapped in 2005, after 60 years of service to the United States military




There was a lot of activity going on around Schofield Barracks  in late 1965 and everyone knew something major was about to happen. Our orders for Vietnam came and we boarded the USAT General Walker in early January of 1966.

The ship traveled 500 miles a day for 14 days. The ocean was rough and some of the troops became seasick including myself.

There was plenty of time for reflection on what awaited for us in Vietnam. I was thinking of how many would return to the United States safely.

It was my first time on a troop ship and it seemed like we would never arrive in Vietnam even though we didn’t know what the future held for those aboard the ship.

7,000 miles is a long trip especially when the ship could only travel 500 miles a day.

The night before we got off the ship percussion grenades were dropped in the surrounding water to ward off any Viet Cong divers that may try to destroy our ship.

That last night aboard the ship was very hot since we were in a very hot climate once we got that close.

When we arrived the next day I drank several cold drinks that weren’t cold since we had no ice. It took awhile to get rid of our sea legs after being aboard ship for two weeks.



Author: Andrew Godfrey

Retired from newspaper work after 38 years. Had served in the Army in Hawaii and Vietnam in the 60's. Am now retired and living in Sulphur, Louisiana.

2 thoughts on “Two Week Trip: Hawaii to Vietnam”

  1. i was on that ship with the 25 if div when they landed in vietnam. i wouild like to continue this story from the ship to cuchi. i will never forget when we had to climb on the side of the ship pn rope ladders to small craft below with full gear and our trusty weapon. the roep ladder was shakeing and donot look down or up. i am a little guy and above me was a big man. if you did not move he will kick you off the ladder. we finally reach our small craft. we had to stand up even thouhg we were all tireed. charlie was at shore so we could not go in right away . had to drive around untilll charlie left. we then entered light aircraft. and then we entered helecopters to cuchi. the news that we received was that charlie killed two people. now we are safe at last home in hawaii. god bless everyone

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