Roosevelt Gipson, Sr. grew up in Louisiana, and worked as a laborer as a teenager. He joined the Army and served in the Field Artillery. In 1965, he deployed to the Dominican Republic with the 82nd Airborne Division. From April 1966 to April 1967, he served in Vietnam with the 173rd Airborne Brigade. He returned to Vietnam and served with Battery B, 2-11 Field Artillery, supporting the 187th Infantry Regiment during the Battle of Hamburger Hill. He remained in the Army until 1980, retiring as a First Sergeant (Promotable) after 20 years of service.
In this interview, he talks about his childhood, the challenges he faced growing up in Louisiana, joining the military, and his deployments to the Dominican Republic and Vietnam. He recalls some of the more memorable events during his deployment, including firing a “Killer Junior” artillery mission in which the High Explosive round is set to detonate 10 meters above the ground at a range of 200 – 1000 meters as an anti-personnel round.