The Things They Carried Characters

Tim O'Brien
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Norman Bowker

The member of the platoon who is described as "gentle," Bowker carries a diary with him. The other unusual thing that he carries is a thumb from the body of a dead Viet Cong boy.

Henry Dobbins

The biggest man in the platoon, Dobbins carries the heaviest physical load, the M-60 machine gun.

Because of his size, however, he is exempt from taking his turn crawling in the enemy's tunnels. He carries canned peaches and other extra rations on patrol.

Rat Kiley

The medic for the platoon, Kiley carries all the necessary supplies for practicing emergency field medicine as well as some unconventional ones such as comic books, M & M candy, and brandy.

Ted Lavender

Because he is scared Lavender always carries tranquilizers and "six or seven ounces of premium dope, which for him was a necessity." He is shot and killed while the platoon waits...

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This section contains 422 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Things They Carried Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
The Things They Carried from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.