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The Ballad of Jerry Norman Duffy

Larry Estridge
Language: English

List of versions


Related Songs

Vietnam Love Song
(Judy Collins)
Just the War
(Larry Estridge)
War Blues
(Ronnie Petersen)


(1972)

Da Broadside #117 gennaio/febbraio 1972

Wounded Marine
Jerry Norman Duffy was just twenty years old
he was born in Sunfield Michigan
in Charlotte town he was known
he liked to ride his horse
and he loved to fix his car
most of his friends were in the service
and he wanted to go to Nam
he wanted to go to Vietnam

His father said i think you must be crazy
my son
but he'd gone off and enlisted so
nothing could be done
he strutted and was proud
in his brand new uniform
but they sent him off to Germany where
soldiers ain't liked at all
where American soldiers ain't liked at all

He was getting very restless
cause he wanted to go to war
so he signed his name on the dotted line
to extend his term for one year more
well he got his choice of station
he was sent to Vietnam
he sure didn't do those people any good
and he did himself some harm
he did himself some fatal harm

After an all night party with lots of beer
his friends sent him off
his station was hill 131
overlooking the city of Guinhon
he would play cards by the hour
and toss around a football
he would talk of home
and the new car he'd buy
as he watched the troops withdraw
as he'd watch the troops withdraw

It was fourteen days to Christmas
and on leave he was to go home
though he had to sign another paper saying
he'd stay there six months more
he wanted to see his family
and the land where he had grown
but maybe somehow he knew
his time was not to be long

He had the graveyard watch
the big lights were out on hill 131
it was a moonless night and without those
lights he couldn't see what was going on
a Vietcong mortar pounded the hill
and explosive charges went off
nine g.i.'s were injured
but Jerry Duffy's life was lost
Jerry Duffy's life was gone

His last reported words
as he died in a friend's arms
were that fourteen yellow roses
should be sent home to his mom
his mother sits and grieves
as she looks into the vase
why fourteen yellow roses
what did he mean to say
oh what did he mean to say

The president comes on the tube
and says the war is almost over again
those yellow people dying don't count
this week there's only one American dead
a lot of people seem to believe him
all across the land
but people know the war goes on
in Charlotte Michigan
in Charlotte Michigan

2016/10/23 - 18:22


Sgt.Jerry Norman Duffey


Il sergente Jerry Norman Duffey (e non Duffy), da Charlotte, Michigan, nel 1971 si guadagnò una copertina di Life non perchè fosse morto da eroe (semplicemente venne ucciso da una bomba di mortaio nel corso di un attacco vietcong nell'area di Binh Dinh, Sud Vietnam) ma perchè aveva 20 anni, perchè la guerra ormai era data per persa, perchè l'esercito invasore già si stava ritirando, perchè in quella settimana del 1971 Jerry Norman Duffey fu l'unico soldato americano a finire ammazzato...

Una morte del tutto inutile, come inutile fu quella ed ogni guerra...

B.B. - 2019/3/26 - 15:32



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