Keys to the Jeep & a Scorned Mother ((Story Sixteen) ( “Voices Out of Saigon”))
Keys to the Jeep ((Story Sixteen) (October, 1970)
(Story told by Morgan, April, 1987))
Part One of Two
“Corporal Gill, give me your jeep keys, I need to get to the back area, where the Ammo dump is, Alpha dump is, and fast!” said Staff Sergeant Morgan .458 socom ammo Carter; then added, so there would be no resistance, “that is a direct order Corporal, from a Staff Sergeant!” (Knowing he out ranked him.)
“I work for a Major, and he wants the jeep cleaned for tonight, and he wants me to get it cleaned at the airstrip,” answered Corporal Gill, “plus I am not sure exactly what a direct order is.”
“First of all, I don’t see the Major, second I don’t need the jeep tonight, third, this is an emergency, if you need to contact him, and then do so, and to educate you, there is no such thing as a direct order, other than, the order is being given to you face to face, and that this order you do not seem to want to follow is coming from an authority, me, and you are a subordinate and let me add one more thing this dialogue, or two…you are really being given a lawful order, because there are no such things as unlawful ones, and you are in a war zone which means if you refuse me, you can be put to death.” said the Staff Sergeant.
“I haven’t a phone as you can see, now how can I do that?” said the corporal, a little stubborn and witty.
“Bad luck for you corporal, my emergency outweighs his car wash, unless you get a lawful order (perhaps a written one) by him not to follow my directions, or my orders, which he can supersede, if he ware reachable, and which you will be accountable for not following a non commission officer’s request.”
The corporal now looked confused; he had never come under such a silly attack, especially when he worked as a Major’s driver.
“But how do I know you are a real staff sergeant, you are in civilian cloths?” said the Corporal, feeling unarmored and frustrated.
“You do not know this, but if you want to go check out my locker, at the 611th Ordnance Company, you will see my strips. Also in there is my id card, read at your leisure.”
“Sergeant, I really need to get to the air strip…!” said the corporal, as if the Sergeant was fooling with him.
The sergeant was taking down his jeep number, and his name, and the time of day, and the corporal was looking at him as he was doing this, and at the bottom of the paper it read, “Corporal Gill’s refused this Staff Sergeant a direct, lawful order… .”
“Where you from Corporal,” asked the sergeant.
“Well, I used to live in Vancouver…” replied the Corporal.
“Canada right?” confirmed the sergeant.