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CHESAPEAKE CITY, Md., May 20, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — President Barack Obama will visit Vietnam this weekend on his first trip to that Communist country, and he is considering an end to a United States’ ban on selling weapons that started in 1975 at the end of the Vietnam War – a conflict that left 60,000 Americans dead and this country changed forever.

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While the president is visiting Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, an auction house in Maryland will be offering the last American combat flag used in the Vietnam War, returned to the United States by a highly-decorated American army officer and war hero. The flag is scheduled to be sold by Alexander Historical Auctions ( in the firm’s May 24-25 live and online auction, along with over one thousand other historic letters, documents, and relics.

The 52″ x 34″ two-sided flag was evacuated from DaNang on March 29, 1973 by U.S. Army Col. Chester Bailey McCoid (1923-2000). McCoid had a life-long and very distinguished career with the 82nd and 101st Airborne. Wounded before even leaving his aircraft on D-Day, he nevertheless parachuted with his men to fulfill his mission. He later served in Korea, as an exchange officer with the Navy, and on the General Staff at the Pentagon before being posted to Vietnam in 1966 where he would ultimately spend 51 months over three tours. He would command 101st Airborne airmobile cavalry and advise generals before leading the American Element of the Four Party Military Commission (Region Two) which oversaw American interests in negotiations between the parties to the conflict, and the American withdrawal from Vietnam.

On March 29, 1973 Col. McCoid left Vietnam, the last American ground force soldier to serve in the field in that country. The flag offered here is the flag taken by McCoid from his field headquarters in DaNang following the final negotiating session of the war and it had remained in his family until last year. McCoid was acknowledged in Congress in speeches entered into the record by Rep. Ike Skelton of Missouri and Rep. Sam Gejdenson of Connecticut, both of whom confirmed that McCoid was the last American ground soldier to serve in the field in Vietnam.

In his long military career, McCoid was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal, the Silver Star, five Legions of Merit, five Bronze Stars, and two Purple Hearts. He was also twice decorated by France and eight times by the Republic of Vietnam. Included with the flag are two of the award documents presented to McCoid by South Vietnam president Nguyen Van Thieu and other relics.

Auction house president Bill Panagopulos stated that he expected that the historic flag would bring well in excess of the $10,000 estimate.

Bidding will be available live, by telephone, and at the bidding websites and which allow bidders around the world to submit offers in real time as the auction progresses.

The auction house may be contacted at:, telephone 203-276-1570.

Media Contact:
Bill Panagopulos

SOURCE Alexander Historical Auctions LLC

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