Below is the Thanksgiving Day 1968 message issued by Brig. Gen. Alexander R. Bolling Jr., then-commander of the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division while it was deployed as the Golden Brigade to combat operations in Vietnam.
“Thanksgiving Day, 1968 will be one that few of us in the 3d Brigade, 82d Airborne Division will ever forget. Almost every man in the brigade will put in a full day’s work, and most of that work will take place in the rice paddies and river-mud of our area of operations.
Though there may appear to be little thankful for, I think we can all be more than grateful that we are citizens of a great nation built on the principle of freedom. When you return home, you will all realize that there is no greater honor, no greater feeling of accomplishment than being a part of the citizen group that must defend that freedom. Ever man in this brigade will be able to stand tall with pride as he remembers the hardships of his tour in Vietnam.
I shall do everything I can to make your Thanksgiving Day as pleasant as the tactical situation will permit. During the day, I shall give thanks for the honor of serving with the All American troopers of the 3d Brigade, 82d Airborne Division. I shall also give thanks for the knowledge that your effort this year will guarantee a happy Thanksgiving for you next year – and for your children in the years to come.”