Rolland E. Kidder
     3656 Rte. 394
     Ashville, New York  14710


Rolland "Rolly" Kidder is a Navy Vietnam War veteran, serving as a Patrol Boat Officer with River Division 535 in the Mekong Delta in 1969-70. Mr. Kidder won the Writer’s Digest Best Life Stories Award for his first book A HOMETOWN WENT TO WAR, an oral history of 37 WWII veterans.

He was appointed to the American Battle Monuments Commission by both Presidents Clinton and Obama and was a member of the original National World War II Memorial Design Committee. In addition, he is a Director of Friends of the National World War II Memorial. Mr. Kidder has long been active in politics; he served 4 terms in the NY State Assembly, started his own natural gas exploration company, and recently served as the Executive Director of the Robert H. Jackson Center.

Mr. Kidder is a graduate of Houghton College, Evangelical Theological Seminary, SUNY at Buffalo Law School and is currently on the Board of Directors for the National Fuel Gas Company. He and his wife Jane live on Lake Chautauqua in western New York.




  1. Hello Mr. Kidder. I am Charles Nierling, your SM1 while on the Surfbird. Looking forward to reading your book.

    1. Charlie: Sorry to be late getting back to you. Hope that you appreciate the book. Most of my comments are in a chapter called "R & R", it tells of my days on the ship and in Sasebo & the reason I chose Japan for R & R.

      Nice hearing from you!


  2. I spent 1970 to 1972 in support of TF-116 and later the VN Navy Trần Hưng Đạo missions. To identify myself I am former MM2 Sam Eaton and Retired SSG TXARNG, You can easily find me on the public American Embassy evacuation log for 19 April 1975 as well as my wife, Bac thi Eaton and our two children.

    I am genuinely enjoying your book and will comment when I finish and like you are a great of Benard Fall and George Kennan. I found Archimedes Leonidas Attilio Patti's book on Meeting Ho Chi Minh very interesting as well. Hanoi's War: An International History of the War for Peace in Vietnam Book by Lien-Hang T. Nguyen and her access to the Ha Noi archives gives one an entirely new perspective about the Le Duan/Ho Chi Minh disagreements that lead to Le Duan's coup

    If you ever stopped at the YRBM-21 you might have seen a teen age girl that was working for the EOD team. A picture of her assisting that EOD team for a Christmas MED-CAP is on the cover of her book.
    "For Two Cows I Ain't Half-Bad: the memoir of a young girl in the Vietnam War" Kindle Edition
    by Bac thi Eaton (Author), Sam Eaton (Editor)

    My thanks to the late MG Robert N Mackinnon for his Foreword


    He who knows himself, and knows his enemy, wins without danger.

    Bac Eaton's story is a graphic picture of the struggles of a young Vietnamese girl and her family in war-torn Vietnam. It should be required reading for all who served there, as well as their families and friends. It explains in simple yet powerful language the forces that were acting on the Vietnamese nation, while we, the United States, were so closely involved. These forces, religious, ethnic, political, and always life-threatening, were never fully understood by the Americans. Whether we were serving in Vietnam, had already served there, or were directing the conflict from Washington, D. C., we never knew what we were facing. This failure to understand made our efforts to meld the South Vietnamese people into an effective cohesive force an exercise in futility.
    In a simple but compelling way the author describes the harsh realities of life in the hell of Vietnam. It is miraculous that anyone could maintain any kind of day to day existence much less dream of the future under these conditions. Bac is living proof of the spirit of the South Vietnamese people and their ability to surmount overwhelming odds.

    Robert N Mackinnon
    Maj. Gen. USA Retired