PFC David Gettman

PFC David Gettman

Dates of Service: Jan 1972 - Feb 1975
100% Complete
36 Contacts
Influence Score: 18,731
3,076 out of 845,926 Veterans
About Discussions


  • PVT Jan 72
  • PV2 May 72
  • PFC Aug 72
  • PV2 Oct 73
  • PFC Jun 74

Recent Activity  -


80% service connected disabled Veteran. 2d Cavalry Regiment historian. Born at Ft. Lewis the day the Korean armistice was signed. Still live in the same house my dad bought in 1953 with his GI Bill. He was a WW II, Korean War, Vietnam War, and Cold War vet with 8 years Washington National Guard service 1930-38 and 29 years US Army service 1942-71.

Military Experiences

Jan 1974 - Feb 1975
Private E-2/Private First Class
Fifth duty station. Driver on 1st platoon leader's M551 Sheridan. Patrolled the Czech border. July 25, 1974, two days before my 21st birthday, one of our Sheridan's caught fire in the middle of the night during an exercise. I tackled and extinguished the driver just before the combat load of 152mm ammunition exploded, completely destroying the vehicle. I was recommended for the Soldier's Medal by my platoon leader but never received it.
Oct 1973 - Jan 1974
Private E-2
Fourth duty station. The 7 of us who got in trouble in Neu-Ulm and sent to Heilbronn were all transferred across Germany to separate us. I ended up in Hanau with a Hawk missile unit. Somehow I ended up with an MOS for an Advanced Hawk Missile Guidance System Mechanic. My room mate was the biggest heroin junkie in Europe and our company clerk was Perry Watkins (Google his name), the guy that started the "don't ask, don't tell" policy. He started sexually harassing me and the CO didn't care. When they found out I had never heard of a Hawk missile, they decided to make me a gate guard on a remote mountain top missile site. I went AWOL again and returned to Heilbronn where I stayed with friends until apprehended. Wasn't long before I got transferred again.
Aug 1973 - Oct 1973
Private First Class
Third duty station. Got in trouble in Neu-Ulm for giving a blanket party to a snitch in our detachment. Turned out his uncle was some general. 7 of us were loaded in a truck and sent to Heilbronn where we spent the next 6 weeks under armed guard doing hard labor details, and at night we were locked in the attic of the barracks. None of us were ever charged or even accused of anything. My pay records were "lost" for 6 months and I never got any of the money back when they were "found". I ended up going AWOL for a couple weeks and went back to Neu-Ulm where I set up a tent behind the BOQ just down the road from the MP station. The MP's brought me food at night until I turned myself in.
Mar 1973 - Aug 1973
Private First Class/Senior Patrolman
Second duty station. Got sent to Neu-Ulm TDY to strengthen the small MP detachment there because of racial riots. Ended up being a permanent transfer. Loved it in Neu-Ulm! Could have spent the rest of my time in the Army there, but got in some trouble and got transferred.


(1 year, 2 months)
Jan 1974 - Feb 1975
West German/Czech border
Patrolled West German border with Czechoslovakia during Cold War.

Military Credentials

Individual & Special Skill Schools

Jul 1972 - Aug 1972

95B Military Policeman OJT

May 1972 - Jun 1972

11E10R8 M551 Sheridan AR/AAV Crewman

Mar 1972 - May 1972

11E Armor Crewman M60 Heavy Battle Tank

Foreign Language Skills


German (0+/0+)

Additional Specialization(s)
Security Clearance
None / Expired