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HELLFIRE BEACH

By Michael Dillon 9Pa

A column of water erupted next to the small landing craft; water spewed all over the
small team of special ops soldiers. The distant sound of machine gun fire could be heard,
while craft’s engines sped up to evade the incoming fire. Tracer rounds screeched over
head with the occasional ping of a direct hit. The small landing craft was closing in fast to
the beach. A small explosion from an artillery piece shocked the boat as the high
explosive round almost hit its mark.
“30 seconds” the pilot yelled over the noise.
The commander, Sergeant Peter Mitchells from the bright city of Miami, was flicking his
lighter’s lid. He looked back of his team; many of his team members were taller so he had
to look up to see them. Mitchells reached down and grabbed his silenced sub-machine
gun and switched the safety off.
“10 seconds” the pilot called again.
There was a loud thud as the craft hit the beach. Mitchells and his team ran out of the
craft into the hail of fire. This was it. It was time to do what he needed to do.

Peter’s feet sank into the sand with every step. The hail of fire lighted up the sky like a
fireworks display and a large explosion from an artillery round launched sand into the air
leaving acknowledging large hole on the beach. Mitchells ran for the hole and launched
himself into it; it provided perfect cover for him and his team. His team joined him
shortly in the hole. It consisted of Corporal J. Smith, the team’s heavy weapons expert
from North Carolina; Private 1st class L. Thomas, a New York based Italian and a hell of a
marksman and private 1st class T. Watts, the corpsman from LA who joined because a
judge made him. Smith placed his SAW (Squad Automatic Weapon) over the top of the
shell hole and opened fire on the enemy. Mitchells crawled up next to Smith. Using his
binoculars he spotted his target, a huge concrete bunker at the back of the beach. The end
of an artillery piece stuck out of the front of the bunker. A large force of marines will be
landing on the beach and the top brass wanted it destroyed. The flyboys bombed it from
the air and the squids used their big guns from the sea, but nothing could crack the bunker
and now it was Mitchells turn

Mitchells grabbed the satellite phone and yelled into the mouth piece over the noise.
“Tango six-one, this is Dog one, requesting smoke screen at coordinates seven- three
alpha.”
There was a silence followed by a loud crackling while his request was processed. Then
Tango six-one’s voice boomed out of the phone.
“Dog one, this is Tango six-one, permission granted, rounds in five.”
Mitchells called out to his team.
“Ok, the squids will be hitting the beach with smoke. When it lands, we’ll hit the bunker
hard and fast and smoke them out.”
In the distance, four low level thuds echoed over the beach. Then there was a loud
howling noise as the naval rounds passed overhead. Four plumes of sand flew into the air
like yellow snow, but not the bad kind. Large pillars of smoke appeared over the beach
and soon the beach looked like a foggy morning. When Mitchell was satisfied that the
beach was fully covered he yelled out.
“Ok, let’s go”

Mitchells and his team ran out of the crater into the smoke filled beach. Mitchells led
with his team following closely behind him. Tracer rounds flew passed his head as the
enemy shot franticly into the smoke. It felt like the beach would never end and seemed to
continue on for ages. Out of the fog appeared a log and a piece of old aircraft. Mitchells
dodged the pile of scrap and as he ran past he spotted a glimmer of light from fishing
wire near the debris. Mitchells looked franticly behind him to see Thomas running
towards the wreckage,
“THOMAS STOP” he yelled but Thomas didn’t hear him. Mitchells tried again
“CLAYMORE, HIT THE DECK.” The team hit the dirt but Thomas didn’t. He tripped
the trip wire and the small anti-personal mine went off. Thomas hit the beach screaming,
Mitchells ran towards Thomas.
“Corpsman” he yelled.
“Watts get over here, Thomas is hit.” Mitchells and his team ran inside the debris and
opened fire at the enemy position, while Mitchells and Watts worked on Thomas. The
enemy knew were they were so all fire was focused on them.
“Can you fix him, Watts?” Mitchells asked.
“He’s cut pretty badly and he can’t walk” Watts replied.
“Leave me here” Thomas mumbled as a bit of blood dripped from his mouth.
“No” said Mitchells, “No I promise you, we are not leaving you behind, we are not
leaving anyone behind.” At that very moment a squeal of income mail (artillery) headed
towards his position.

“GET OUT OF HERE!” Mitchells yelled and his team scrambled in all directions.
Mitchells grabbed Thomas and placed him over his shoulders and ran out of the plane
wreckage. He dived as the large explosive shell hit the beach and spewed bits of metal
everywhere. Mitchell put Thomas down on the sand and looked around trying to figure
out what to do next. The smoke screen was fading fast and he needed to get to the bunker.
He picked up Watts and with his free hand turned on his short range radio in his helmet to
the sound of “Move up the beach”. His team moved up the beach firing. With his free
hand, Mitchells fired his sub-machine gun while carrying Thomas. Soon the bunker was
in sight and trenches of soldiers also became visible. Mitchells strafed the trench with his
sub-machine gun and jumped in, he placed Thomas on the ground and he started shooting
anyone who moved with his pistol, His team soon joined him and as if like instinct the
small team made the way through the trenches and into the bunker, where they cleared
every space and every gun port. Over the radio Mitchells finally heard both his men say
the word clear. This was it, the bunker was theirs. Mitchell grabbed the satellite phone
and dialed. “Tango Six – One this is Dog One, over”, Mitchells waiting for a reply.
“This is Tango Six-One, go ahead”
“The bunker is ours; I repeat the bunker is ours”
“Roger that Dog One, sending you a pick up”
Mitchells placed down the phone, relieved the fight was over. Then there was a loud
explosion and loud gun fire; Mitchell grabbed his personal radio and said, “Defensive
Positions”
Mitchells dropped out the empty mag in his weapon and replacing it with a fresh one. He
realized he wasn’t done yet.

Mitchells ran out of the bunker and into the trench network with Smith and Watts
following close behind. Mitchells looked into the thick jungle on the hillside as a hundred
flashes from automatic weapons filled the air. Troops started emerging from the jungle
and running down the hill, Mitchells scanned his surroundings looking for anything to
help. Then he spotted it, a Browning 50 cal machine gun. He ran to it and grabbed the
handles of the machine gun. Mitchells pulled back the charging handle and listened for it
to click into place. The machine gun opened up and started spewing tracer rounds at the
advancing troops. The rounds peppered the hillside, as men were dropped this way and
that, as they struggled to maintain their attack. Soon the last round began to pass through
the gun and there was a click as the gun ran out of ammunition. Mitchells jump off the
gun and continued shooting with his sub-machine gun. He heard a sound in the distance;
it was the sound of a chopper. Mitchells ran to the rest of his team in the trenches and
grabbed the satellite phone and yelled into the mouthpiece.
“Tango Six-One, this is Dog One. LZ hot, cancel the evac.”
“Roger that Dog One, evac canceled. Helicopter will perform in an attack role and will be
at your disposal.”
“Roger that Tango Six-One, Dog One out.”
In a matter of seconds the Black Hawk Helicopter flew overhead. The aircraft turned
parallel to the hill. The mini gun mounted on its side opened up on the advancing troops.
Tracer rounds and rocket streaks filled the sky as they flew at the helicopter, but none hit
home. Mitchells fired to support the chopper but he just managed to hear a muffled voice.
“Dog One, this is Tango Six-One. Naval support is on its way in support.”
“Hit the deck,” Mitchells yelled. “Out going mail is on its way”

The rounds hit home, right on the mark. Mitchells didn’t give the navy enough credit.
The rounds hit directly on the tree line, followed by a bright flash and then a large
explosion followed. Even the helicopter had to move to get away from it. As the smoke
cleared Mitchell looked across the slope. It was quiet; there was no sound at all. It was
over, it was all over. The helicopter made a slow descent to land near the bunker. Watts
picked up Thomas and carried him to the helicopter with Mitchells following behind.
Smith stayed behind to cover them. Soon Watts and Thomas were in the bird and
Mitchells waited for Smith.
“Come on Smith” he yelled. “Let’s get out of here”
Smith started walking towards the helicopter but just before Smith made it a shoot rang
out. Mitchells looked franticly at the hillside.
“Sniper” he yelled as he crouched down.
Mitchell turned his head and just saw Smith hit the ground. Mitchell stood up and ran
towards his fallen comrade lying on the ground.
Mitchell made it to Smith without being hit by the long range marksman. Smith had a leg
wound and needed medical attention fast. Mitchell put Smith over his shoulders and
started to carry him to the chopper. A second shot rang out and hit Mitchells in the leg
making it difficult for him to walk but Mitchells knew he had to keep moving. A third
rang out, but missed Mitchells. Once again the mini gun of the helicopter opened up and
fired onto the hillside. Mitchells made it to the helicopter and put Smith on board. The
helicopter launched into the air and over the sea, below Mitchells could see the boats of
the marine landing party dotted across the shoreline. Mitchells knew that now he was
done, he had completed his mission. He looked over at Smith lying against the cockpit
wall.
“We did it Smith, we did it”
Smith didn’t answer.
“Smith”
Mitchells nudged him and Smith slumped forward. Mitchells checked Smiths pulse, there
was no heart beat. Mitchells looked at Smiths neck; there was a small puncture in it.
Smith was dead. Mitchells felt a felling of dread as he stared at his dead comrade. He
looked back over the ocean and thought to himself he made a promise that he would
leave no one behind. He felt relived that he had kept his promise even though one didn’t
make it. He had managed to get all of his men out and away from the hell of war.