I had to coerce Sully deFontaine into revealing much of what is in this book. Not because it is still classified… but because of the nature of Sully deFontaine. He is a true gentleman and I have come to deeply respect him… a humble, confident, cool headed, engaging and reserved man. He likes to laugh… like all the Green Berets I have met. It’s the best medicine for what they have done and seen in life.
Sully didn’t want me proposing himself for any medal… but I insisted until his protests of “no” turned into mumblings that he’d rather I not do it. But Sully, along with his other two team members Albert Clement and Stefan Mazak certainly deserve more than silence from our government.
Eventually, I got the full story from him through his memoirs. Sully, along with all Special Forces “Green Berets” are by far some of the most intelligent and finest human beings I have had the privilege to associate with. These are Special People… of Special Forces… “The Quiet Professionals.”
All of my drive to get these three Green Berets proper awards and a public award ceremony comes from Sully’s 58-year-old quest to get the Distinguished Service Cross for First Sergeant Stefan Mazak… who saved Sully and 13 missionaries from certain death.
Sully deFontaine said to me recently… “I visited Sergeant Mazak’s grave at the Veteran’s Cemetery at Fayetteville, North Carolina a few years back. He and his wife are buried alongside each other. I was shocked at what I saw.”
“The headstone on his grave simply says, ‘Stefan Mazak, Sergeant First Class, U.S. Army,’ then his birth and death dates. I was upset to see a man who’d sacrificed so much for others and his country buried with such a plain and unrevealing grave marker.” He continued, “The next trip I make to Fayetteville, I’m going to have a new headstone made for his grave site. I want it to read:”
Sergeant First Class Stephen Mazak
U.S. Army Special Forces…Silver Star for heroism…
Killed in Action, April 18, 1968, Republic of Vietnam.
“At the bottom I want to put:”
Sergeant Mazak, you saved my life. Sully.
Sully deFontaine’s wish to change the grave headstone of Sergeant Stefan Mazak, the man who saved his life so many years ago, will not happen. There are no family members to authorize this and cemetery regulations prohibit anyone but blood relatives from doing so.