William A. Perkins
U. S. Army
Dates of Service: 08/30/1966 - 08/23/1968
Repair/Recovery , 560th Light Maintenance Co, 5th Maintenance BN.

William A. Perkins was born in 1944 in Longview, Texas.. He was drafted when he was 22 years old and went to Fort Polk for boot camp, then to Alaska where he did equipment repair and welding before being sent to Vietnam. He arrived when the Tet Offensive was just starting and served with the 560th, a maintenance unit at An Khe in Pleiku. They repaired small vehicles, large vehicles, reefer vans and everything else brought for repairs. He also did guard duty at the bunkers and the perimeter. When he was discharged, he went back to work for Standard Tool in Longview, Texas. After three years, he became the foreman at the steel company and in 1975 began his own business in Kilgore, Texas. While contracting, he also began working for Merritt Tool in Kilgore and worked for them for 34 years. William returned to Vietnam in 2002 for 21 days. He toured the country and visited Saigon and the Ho Chi Minh museum. In 2007 he started the Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) in Longview and also helped found chapter 1183 of the VFW. His VVA chapter has sponsored an orphanage in Cambodia, various mission trips, have given Christmas gifts to the needy, and donated money to pay bills, buy groceries, build ramps and whatever else the veterans need. William and his wife have five children, seven grandchildren and seven great grandchildren.