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This article summary is reprinted from Tomorrow Magazine's 2002
Veterans Day Special Issue, published by UAW Daimler Chrysler.

Gerald Fivecoate, Sr.

Gerald Fivecoate
Photo: LARRY LADIG

His days as a soldier officially ended in 1967, but one last piece of Spc. 4th Class Jerry Fivecoate's Vietnam experience finally fell into place this year. After 35 years, Fivecoate's U.S. Army dog tag was returned - thanks to the efforts of his daughter Julie Tracy, who tracked it down through an organization called Tours of Peace (TOP) Vietnam Veterans. As it turns out, someone from TOP found Fivecoate's dog tag in Hoi An, Vietnam, where Fivecoate was stationed at one point during his tour of duty with the 2nd Howitzer Battery, 11th Armored Cavalry. "I don't remember losing it," says Fivecoate, who's worked at Kokomo Casting for 10 years. But then again, I had a lot on my mind at the time." Foremost on Fivecoate's mind was field artillery. His job was to compute and program firing data for artillery guns -- the charge and range needed based on the target -- from various battle locations, often under fire. "This was before they used computers to do the work," explains Fivecoate. "I did it using a slide rule, so at times, in the middle of battle, it was quite a challenge." In addition to Julie, Fivecoate has two other daughters and a son, Gerald Fivecoate Jr., who also works at Kokomo Casting.

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