Title: Surgery, Sand and Saigon Tea: An Australian Army doctor in Viet Nam

Author: Barr, Marshall

Condition: Near Mint

Edition: 1st Edition

Publication Date: 2001

ISBN: 1865084638

Cover: Soft Cover without Dust Jacket – 252 pages

Comments: SURGERY, SAND AND SAIGON TEA is the story of a young Australian anaesthetist’s service in the Viet Nam War-from peril to pleasure, a year filled with experiences.

Marshall Barr prefaces his Viet Nam memories with his account of growing up in Brisbane during the Pacific war, his pre-war training and last minute flings, the shock of his first experience of a foreign land and a war zone. In recalling his tour of duty, he is uncompromisingly honest about the use of alcohol as a refuge, the search for female companionship and the friendships which preserved his sanity.

During his tour, Major Barr spent time with the Australian Task Force at Nui Dat, with Civilian Teams at Long Xuyen and Bien Hoa, and with American units in Saigon and Tay Ninh. He was based at 8 Field Ambulance, later 1 Australian Field Hospital, and the work there is graphically described-the techniques of resuscitation, surgery and evacuation of the Australian wounded, the back-up service by US hospitals, the arrival of the first Australian nurses, the dedicated work of the young medics and the chaos caused by the Tet offensive.

SURGERY, SAND AND SAIGON TEA is based on the author’s personal diary. Its startling immediacy is complemented by reflections matured over the three decades since that eventful year. Life-saving dramas, death, danger, mateship, love and humour all leap from the pages. This is how it really was.