Detroit Michigan July 26, 1967


Keith Bodine
October 22, 2017

I lived to come home from the Vietnam War
A place full of hate and constant death at your door
I thought I was finally safe in my own promise land
Little did I know how much hate and rage there was at hand

I had orders for my next duty station at Fort Campbell Kentucky
Home of the 101st Screaming Eagles, I thought I was so lucky
I reported for duty and was assigned to my brand new Men
With the 187th Infantry Division, I was finally Home again

I couldn’t wait to meet my new infantry squad and get back to work
But I found out I wasn’t there to do that, I felt like such a damn jerk
Because In my own country I had to go fight In Detroit Michigan
Where there were riots brewing and fights going on, I’d rather be fishing

We were stationed at the Detroit County Fair Ground
Waiting for more airborne troops from the 82nd Infantry in bound
From there we were sent to an all black ghetto school
Where gangs and thugs were the ones who tried to rule

We went on neighborhood convoys with the local police
Driving around in the dark of night looking for snipers or a firefight
It didn’t take long and there was a sudden flash of light
And the Pistol barked real loud in the dead of that night

We jumped out of our Jeep, running fast with boots on our feet
Behind the houses backyards on that long dark street
Suddenly they stopped, their feet went up in the air
And we caught up with them real fast to their utter despair

They were promptly turned over to the waiting Police cruiser
Who searched the three boys really rough,one of the cops was a real bruiser
They finally placed them in the car’s backseat, we followed them,not too far behind,
The police caravan suddenly stopped near a dark hotel alley, ours cars in a line.

The Chief got out, walked over and whispered something in our *PL’s ear
We looked at each other not understanding the look of of the *PL’s fear
He got out and told us to stay put, don’t get out of the Jeep
Keep our F’n mouths shut and don’t utter a peep

The cops, our PL and the boys walked really slow into that dreadful dark alley
While we sat there waiting and wondering what’s going on, we hear a loud volley
Three shotgun blasts have shattered the silence and I knew, I had no doubt
What all of the secrets and the shotgun blasts were all about.

Those three poor black boys never stood a chance with those white cops
They had been brutally murdered by three cowards who had no guts
The weapon they used was a blank starter pistol, it was just a prank
Aubrey Pollard,Carl Cooper, Fred Temple were MURDERED, which really stank.

May God Bless you young boys, you made a mistake a long time ago
What happened to you was a horrible thing and I know I’ve been slow
But I’ve been trying to right that wrong with much opposition
I’ll stand my ground and keep telling the truth which has always been my position

*
(Platoon Leader) 1st Lieutenant
DETROIT MICHIGAN JULY 27, 1967