Belle was making cocktails and mentioned that the one bottle was a "dead soldier". I got her another bottle and my memry went back to the summer of 1976.
I was a shavetail lieutenant, a fantastic example of military manhood, and a platoon leader in the 4th Battalion, 37th Armor at Fort Knox. My platoon Sergeant, "Big Al" Senese, was an E-7 recently out of Germany, but had entered the service from The Bronx, New York. His military bearing was exemplary, and his grasp of profanity was graduate-level. At this particular time, he was "going off" on the hapless crew of my 25 tank. I heard the term "dead soldier", and my interest was piqued. I was sure that if there was a corpse in the tank, my company commander would probably want a name. Sergeant Senese fixed me with a baleful glare, a snappy salute, and informed me that this particular dead soldier was in the form of an empty pint gin bottle, that he had found in the driver's compartment of the tank. This offended his military decorum and he truly wished that I would go away so that he could take remedial action.
I spun on my heel and left Big Al to his remedial action. I had work to do in the company, and he seemed to have this well in hand. Sergeant Senese was the first of a long line of stellar NCOs who taught me more about the military than all the books ad Army regulations could ever teach a young officer.