In 1970 I was a Police Officer and was called out of the jail (I had jail duty) one night and assigned to a black and white patrol car. At approximately 2200 hours I bagged a DUI who was not just DUI, but incredibly drunk. The arrestee was a 1st LT. who was wearing his class A's, replete with a CIB, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, and his West Point Class Ring, Class of 1968.

He explained that he was home on compassionate leave because his dad had suffered a heart attack. He said he was going to recover and leave the hospital soon and that he had purposely gotten drunk as hell so that he would get arrested, jailed, prosecuted, and convicted. As a result he could hope to be discharged from the Army or at least get a reprieve from Vietnam and the Infantry.

I told him that maybe things might not seem so bad in the morning after he sobered up and that this could be a decision he might regret. The night's action was slow so I handcuffed him and drove him around until 0700 the next morning. The young officer was very drunk and talked incessantly about firefights, "DD 1300s casualty reports," "canned letters" to wives and parents saying things like "George was one of the finest soldiers that I have ever known etc. If would be of help please feel free to write to me, etc. Then the Captain would sign the mf'ers!" The things this guy was saying and talking about, the stories he had to tell, were pure horror. He had a very wounded soul.

At the end the shift I had him shower and clean up as best he could at the sheriff's station and I bought him breakfast at a nearby restaurant. I drove him back to his car, wished him well and he thanked me at length for my understanding and how I had helped him through a difficult night. The young Lieutenant finished his time in the Army and retired as a Brigadier General. He has been a life long friend of mine since that night I picked him up so many years ago.