This year Vietnam Veterans of the 101st Airborne, as well as the 1st Cav and other divisions, were awarded the honorary Air Assault badge for pioneering the techniques that are now taught at the Sabalauski Air Assault School in Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

This video documents one Vietnam Veterans experience, from take-off in New York to returning to Fort Campbell 50 years later and receiving the award. Pinned on him by the current Commanding General of the 101st Airborne Division.

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TRANSCRIPT – Transcript and Subtitles are generated automatically by YouTube and may contain errors.

good afternoon we’re at laguardia
airport headed to nashville tennessee to
get a car and drive to fort campbell
tomorrow on the first airborne division
is awarding
aerosol bags soldiers who served in
a lot of guys will be there a lot of
dinners and partying so 50 years later
he’s better than nothing we need to get
something from the army
at least you got something
welcome to nashville music city okay now
we got to drive up to fort campbell
about hours drive and we’ll be good to
and roll all the way there you go
yeah there you go mama says
here we go one second please that’s it
you’re done how you doing
i’m gonna talk to your id
this one about my wife
school and finally after 50 years we got
awarded our aerosol badge
and here’s the little badge and has a
certificate of saying so
thank you everyone all the way
welcome home brothers
thank you you know i think we made a
fundamental mistake
when we put this operation together that
we did not plan for tax project success
today an air assault soldier will
infiltrate into unknown territory
walk for miles fight on foot
be part of a combined arms team and win
when we have soldiers today who graduate
from the sabarovsky aerosol school
i know as a commander three critical
things about the soldier’s short pin
on air assault hi my name is aaron cook
so it starts off with a day zero at the
obstacle course
and then after that they do uh so first
they do a two mile run
and then after the two mile run they
change back into their boots
head down to the obstacle course there’s
nine uh obstacles they need to
to go through phase one is it’s yours
your combat assault pz operations and
uh pathfinder operations and then phase
two is your sling load operations which
happen take place in the motor pool and
then phase three
there’s a tower before they go on the
tower they have to do
what you see here is the red wall and
then after the red wall
they go up to the tower at the aerosol
school this is the rappel tower where
they uh they train the soldiers so the
the side of the tower with the walls
that’s what they go down first
and then they’ll go off this platform up
uh and that’s to simulate propelling off
of aircraft
and they also can do a fast roping off
this tower
and um you’ll see the there’s a actually
repel master school that they teach here
and they’ll you’ll see them do the
australian rappel
off this tower it’s pretty cool that’s
where they go down face first things
like that
we were still our a division that will
crush our enemies by
falling upon that like a thunderbolt in
the skies we have a proud legacy earned
by the paratroopers world war
ii the guarana mobile soldiers of
vietnam and the earth solution desert
iraqi freedom and mcdormand today’s
division is one who translates to new
global challenges and new technologies
safe to develop
how we will adapt and prepare for a
large-scale combat operations
our soldiers today take great pride and
inspiration from our history and
heritage returned
by all of you who came before us however
we are awarding honorary air assault
wings to our vietnam we pioneered air
mobile tactics in the crew school of
upon which our entire air assault
we strive to honor the legacy build upon
what you all accomplish
in the hills valleys and rights patties
i hope and i’m not sure you do fully
appreciate the impact
all of you had on all of us
but it is greatly appreciated