“Even Though I’m The Least Experienced, I’m In Charge”: A Brutal Introduction To Combat In Vietnam

Jon Every-Clayton


Jon Every-Clayton was born in Jersey City, New Jersey, but raised in Chicago, Illinois. His father was from England, and worked for Johnson & Johnson. Jon was interested in history, and followed the Korean War in the newspapers he delivered. In 1957, he enlisted in the Army Reserve as a medic. After a short break in service, he reenlisted in 1963, and in 1964 he was commissioned through Officer Candidate School, deploying in May 1966 to Vietnam, where he was assigned to A Co, 1st Battalion, 327th Infantry in the 101st Airborne Division, serving with Dennis Foley, one of his OCS roommates. During his time in Vietnam, he contracted malaria, and suffered a relapse on Thanksgiving Day in 1966. After the war, he had a difficult time adjusting to civilian life. In this interview, he talks about his childhood and joining the military, and provides his assessment of the training he received. He describes his deployment to Vietnam, and the responsibility of being in charge. He examines in detail some of the memorable patrols and operations during his tour. Finally, he discusses what he has done since leaving the Army, and what his service means to him.


conflicts Vietnam War
topics Leadership Camaraderie Character Injuries Returning from War
interviewer David Siry
date 17 August 2018


name Jon Every-Clayton
institution OCS
service Infantry
unit 1st Platoon and Weapons Platoon, A Company / 1-327 Infantry
service dates 1957 1972