Posted by: notsofancynancy | November 8, 2012

8th of November

Early on in their career Country Duo, Big and Rich spent some time in Deadwood South Dakota. In fact most of the songs on their first album were written there. While there they met Niels Harris and heard his tale of being in Vietnam. Niels was sent overseas with the 173rd Airborne and found himself and fellow soldiers in the middle of a jungle and ambushed by 1200 enemy soldier out numbering his unit three times. According to Deadwood Mountain Grand,”

Just 19, Niles was assigned to the Army’s 173rd Airborne Brigade. On November 5, 1965, he and his fellow soldiers of C Company landed in Vietnam’s War Zone D near Bien Hoa. Three days later, on the 8th of November, B and C Companies found themselves in a fierce battle with 1,200 Viet Cong soldiers equipped with machine guns, claymores and sniper rifles.

At the end of the battle, 48 Americans and more than 400 Viet Cong were dead. Many more U.S. soldiers were wounded, including Niles. His right leg, from knee to hip, was hit by machine gun fire.

The man in the video is actually Mr. Harris.

There is a documentary out there where Big and Rich go with Mr. Harris back to where this happened in Vietnam. Niels still had the pair of boots that were cut off of him when he got hit by machine gun fire in 1965. They bury the boots, sing the song and “Throw back a strong one.” If you ever get a chance to see it do.

Take a minute to enjoy what I feel is one of the greatest songs, ever. Raise a toast tonight to those who lost their lives, we must never forget.


  1. Powerful. Even more so because I have a 19 year old son. Can’t imagine boys that young having to do the job they did for us. Thank you for sharing and reminding us.

    • Because of Big and Rich I will never forget this date!

      • I remember seeing this video on TV, maybe during an awards show.

      • Yes I know they preformed it on the CMA’s back when it came out. It IS powerful!

  2. A senseless war fought by those who just left their childhoods behind. Great post Nancy. We must never forget. 🙂

    • Agreed LuAnn! I know I will never forget.

  3. Reblogged this on Living and Lovin and commented:
    Worth Watching go ahead and push PLAY

  4. Thank you for this stirring tribute to the man and the men of B and C companies. What is the tile of the documentary that you referenced?

    • “8th of November: a true American story of honor.” Here is a link to a great article on the whole thing. It really tells the story better than me.

      • Thank you.

      • No thank you! I have not been able to find it on the internet. So if you find it maybe you can share the link. It seems like it is on one of their Super Galactic Fan Packs. I did update the post with the name of it…so thanks!!!! lol

      • I will let you know if I find it. So far netflix and PBS do not have it.

      • I hope you can. It is really good.

  5. Goosebumps and a tear or two-hundred.

    • I have shed many over it and I have been listening to it for years!

  6. I would like to see the entire documentary. Fabulous!

    • I think I cried the whole hour! It was amazing!

  7. Thank you for the story. Good to read real story of war. War need to be shown for what it is. Life is second and minutes. Must remember the brave men and woman who served.

    • Well said, minutes and seconds….. We must never forget!

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