View Full Version : 2LT Felix King B/2/8-1st Cav 6 Nov 65

Jack Moroney (RIP)
11-04-2006, 08:55
I met Felix when we were brand new, know nothing, 2LTs going thru the Infantry Officer's Basic Course (IOBC) in January 1965 at Fort Benning. He was my first and last real friend to fall in combat but not, by any measure, my last comrade and brother in arms to fall over the years. I have had many defining moments in my career, but this one was a lasting and haunting lesson about officers and the concept of friendship. We were young, we knew that we were going to be in Vietnam soon, and we also knew that after IOBC we were prepared for nothing. Felix and I shared a lot of visions about our roles as officers and one big one was that we had to be the best we could, not for ourselves, but for those for whom we knew we were going be responsible. So we both decided that we had to get as much training as we could and decided that we should take on Ranger and Airborne school. Being 2LTs, and being impressed by seeing those other 2LTs that had gone before us wearing those monikers of excellence, we thought that in addition to garnering some additional skills, we might likewise provide some level of inspiration and confidence for our soon to be riflemen in our potential abilities. Of course, being typical 2LTs we didn't really understand that the only thing that those patches were going to do for us was to keep us drier in a rain storm and then only under the added thickness of the patches themselves. Naive, hell yes but extremely motivated. We also realized that each of us had additional abilities that could make up for each others shortages and worked together to correct what we saw as tragic flaws in our leadership abilities and qualities as officers. We just knew that the Army had to assign us to the same unit, I mean damn we were a team, we were immortal, and we could do it all-or so we thought. But it did not happen. Felix was assigned to the 1st Cav and I went to Germany. On 10 November I was handed a telegram telling me of his death. It was a blow and there was, and still is, a lot of guilt. What might have been different if I had been there, what shortcoming might have I been able to see and correct, what had gone wrong, were not we Airborne-Rangers and supposed to the best that the Infantry School had to offer, were not we supposed to be able to survive whatever the enemy threw at us, had we not promised to go through SF and serve together again? I struggled with this, I mean we were friends and friends were supposed to be there for one another-but I was not there and Felix fell. It took me a while to understand that officers do not have friends because the concept of friendship as we knew it as civilians just does not work in the military. You cannot be there when you need to be, you cannot be called upon to stand for your friend, you cannot go into harms way for your friend . He was truly my friend and I his, but the concept of friendship as it pertains to the role of an officer died for me on 6 November 1965. So for those of you that are reading this, if you take nothing else away from this bumbling old warrior the best thing you can do for both yourself, and those men with whom you will become very close over the years as brothers' in arms, is to train yourself to be able to meet not only your expectations but theirs and train your men to be able to meet all possible challenges. I may have failed Felix, but I spent a career doing everything I could never to fail anyone again with whom I would serve. RIP Felix.

11-04-2006, 09:34
COL Moroney:

You did not fail your friend!

You have honored his memory here!

Blue skies!

Rest In Peace Lt Felix King!

Goggles Pizano
11-04-2006, 11:15
Rest in peace Sir.

11-04-2006, 11:51
RIP, Lieutenant.

11-04-2006, 17:39
RIP 2LT King.

Colonel Sir, you are in my prayers and I am sorry for your loss. God bless.

x SF med
11-04-2006, 18:19
RIP LT King.

COL M - Your post made me think of the friends, comrades-in-arms, and fellow soldiers that are no longer with us - you have honored your friend's memory, and honored us by sharing your thoughts.

We are only one week from Vetrans Day, and (at least in my case) these thoughts seem to start surfacing at this time every year.

11-04-2006, 19:08
RIP, Warrior.