George Putnam joined the Marine Corps in 1966 at the age of seventeen.
As he puts it, he "was to grow up fast" on the battlefields of Vietnam. Putnam, a machine gunner platoon leader, was wounded twice. He was wounded the second time more seriously, in August of '67 and sent home.
Back in America, he was wounded in a way that has never healed, as anti-war demonstrators called him a "baby killer" and spat on him.
In spite of physical and emotional pain, Putnam says fighting in the Marines was one of "the greatest things he's ever done."