Interesting facts about Martha Raye

It was well recognized that Martha Raye endured less comfort more than any other Vietnam entertainer.

I did not know this, I bet you didn’t either.

Don’t let the sun go down without reading this about Martha Raye.

The most unforgivable oversight of TV is that her shows were not taped.
I was unaware of her credentials or where she is buried.

Somehow, I just can’t see Brittany Spears, Paris Hilton, or Jessica Simpson doing what this woman and the other USO women, including Ann Margaret & Joey Heatherton didfor our troops in past wars.

Most of the old time entertainers were made of a lot sterner stuff than today’s crop of activist bland whiners.

The following is from an ArmyAviator who takes a trip down memory lane:

“It was just before Thanksgiving ’67 and we were ferrying dead and wounded from a large GRF west of Pleiku. We had run out of body bags by noon, so the Hook (CH-47 CHINOOK) was pretty rough in the back. All of a sudden,we heard a ‘take-charge’ woman’s voice in the rear.

There was the singer andactress, Martha Raye, with a Special Forces beret and jungle fatigues, withsubdued markings, helping the wounded into the Chinook, and carrying the dead aboard. ‘Maggie’ had been visiting her Special Forces (SF) ‘heroes’ out ‘west.’

We took off, short of fuel, andheaded to the USAF hospital pad at Pleiku. As we all started unloading our sad pax’s, a USAF Captain said to Martha…. “Ms Raye, with all these dead and wounded to process, there would not be time for your show!”

To all of our surprise, she pulled on her right collar and said, “Captain, see this eagle? I am a full ‘Bird’ in the USArmy Reserve, and on this is a ‘Caduceus’ which means I am a Nurse, with a surgical specialty…. now, take me to your wounded!”

He said, “Yes ma’am….follow me.”

Several times at the Army Field Hospital in Pleiku, she would ‘cover’ a surgical shift, giving a nurse awell-deserved break.

Martha is the only woman buried in the SF (Special Forces) cemetery at FtBragg.

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