Elegy: SFC Terry J. Sperry
That senior sergeant saw two worlds, the present and the
But tanks and men and all such things, their shadows never
The engine roar, it casts its spell, some ghosts will never
The guidon's snap, the horse's hoof, the sounds he loved the
To Vietnam, that trip made twice, the Air Pacific ferry,
Tropic Lightening, Blackhorse Cav ... Charlie, and trooper
All the while, a recurring dream, the drummer calls the
The 7th Cav, the saddle's feel," I'll ride with Colonel
At Carson next, it all got done, he rose there quick and
But at setting sun, you ask yourself, tomorrow or the past?
Sabot or saber, horsepower or horse, "I feel a steady pull,"
"This modern Army, Lt, I say, there's really too much bull."
"I'll tell few tales of youthful days, just know me by the
"These medals won, and here, this one, the wounds were
"Snap to it men, I've earned these stripes, Lt, are you just
"I run this show, you see these troops, in me they are
"The border camp's a pleasant stop, at Graf ' fire where I
A ready smile, "it's my platoon" and always, "done my way!"
" But mesas hold over German hills for me a certain thrill,"
"Of ARTEPs, tests and other drills, I fear I've had my
Another stripe a few more years, "Lt what was your name?"
"These common skills and SQTs, Lt, it's all a game."
"But way out West and way back then, a trooper stood so
"You walk your mount and clean your kit, Iíll heed that
"Fifteen are in and I am done, I'll take my leave of you."
"I'll soldier now in a different way, wool shirt in rough
So far away, Fort Union lies, the mesas through the years,
ď Iíll gladly go and live the past with hearty fellow
" Now close in space to where I fit, a Ranger in this park,"
But just when all is going right, the shroud and then the
A rattler's strike, "I'm moving on, I'm riding with the
"Don't morn too long, this trooper's gone, I did just as I
SFC Sperry at Camp Lee in 1977. A consummate tanker, he
certainly knew his trade.
Terry in 1978. Old school Army, Sperry had two tours in
Vietnam, ĺ Cav and 1/11 ACR but surprisingly, innovative
programs, ARTEP, SQT, MOS driven individual training, Common
Skills, even the Master Gunner program were viewed with