Vol 5 No. 26 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS July 13, 1970
|Unit Page||Unit Page||Unit Page||Unit Page|
|1st Bde 3||2/27 1||25th Psyops 6||4/23 3|
|1/27 Photo 4||2/27 6||269th Avn Bn 8||4/23 8|
|1/27 4||2/27 Photos 7||3/4 Cav 1||4/23 Photo 8|
|1/27 Photos 4||25th Avn Bn 3||3/4 Cav Photo 1||7/11 Arty 3|
|2/12 1||25th Band 1||3/22 Photo 8||7/11 Arty Photo 3|
|2/12 7||25th Inf 1||4/9 3||725th Maint 8|
|2/12 Photo 7||25th Inf 8||4/9 3||Cambodia - MG Bautz 1|
CG Commends Cambodian Operation
Now that the Tropic Lightning Division, the Go Devil Brigade and attached units have returned from Cambodia, it is appropriate that we review and salute the results of our cross-border operations.
Every element of every unit - infantry, armor, engineer, artillery, aviation and logistic (both divisional and non-divisional) - contributed to these operations.
Truly gallant efforts were waged. For example, the 3d Squadron, 4th Cavalry spent 50 consecutive days in the fields of Cambodia without return for rest.
Your dedication, courage and skill have deprived the enemy of staggering quantities of weapons, ammunitions and supplies. You have deprived him of the use of sanctuaries inside Cambodia, temporarily halting and challenging the communists to undertake the costly and time-consuming job of rebuilding. You have captured volumes of important documents that have provided a clearer, and more detailed, picture of the enemy system of command, control and support from inside Cambodia.
A partial list of communist arms, ammunition and equipment which Tropic Lightning troops captured or destroyed inside Cambodia includes more than 700 individual weapons . . . just under 150 crew-served weapons . . . and over 45 tons of ammunition.
You have captured or destroyed more than 1,500 tons of rice . . . more than 5,600 pounds of communications equipment . . . 56 vehicles . . . and almost 1,600 pounds of documents. More than 13,000 pounds of medical supplies will never again be used to sustain the enemy.
One of our most important tasks during the coming months will be to help the Government of the Republic of South Vietnam to strengthen its forces and solidify its people's defenses. The work that you have done in Cambodia will contribute immeasurably to this purpose. Any operations the enemy begins in South Vietnam will face critical shortages.
There can be no doubt that the cross-border operations of Tropic Lightning and its sister divisions have dealt the enemy a severe blow and have brought the war much closer to a successful conclusion.
Your sweat, blood and tears have contributed greatly to the success of the campaign in the III Corps Tactical Zone.
We will never forget the sacrifice of out comrades-at-arms who were killed or wounded. We pledge full measure of devotion to them.
May God bless and keep you all.
Edward Bautz, Jr.
|LEAVING CAMBODIA -- After more than six weeks in Cambodia, troopers of the 3rd Squadron, 4th Cavalry, turn their units toward Vietnam. The "Three-Quarter Cav" was the last 25th Division unit to return. (Photo by CPT Robert M. Renneisen)|
Movement In The Grass
Hounds Clip Stray Foe
By SP4 GREG DUNCAN
CU CHI - Five enemy found out too late that it pays to know where you're going, especially when it's head-on into a 2d Wolfhound night defensive position (NDP).
On a laager, approximately ten miles north of here, Alfa Company, 2d Battalion, 27th Infantry, "Wolfhounds," sent out 4 night recon patrols while the remainder of the men settled down in their NDP, for a routine night of rest.
"We had been set up for a couple of hours and with the thick clouds overhead it made it pretty hard to see," explained Staff Sergeant Dennis Stultz, Hagerstown, Md.
"When I first heard movement and voices in the tall grass, I wasn't sure where they were coming from. Finally, I realized they were really close and apparently headed straight for our position, so we blew our left claymore," Stultz said.
After the firing was initiated more claymores were detonated and several grenades were thrown. When one of the enemy got up to run, he was stopped by small arms fire.
"It all happened so fast no one except the guys who blew the claymores seemed to know what was going on," said Specialist 4 Arnold Hendry, Everett, Wash.
"The first three men were carrying a man on a makeshift stretcher and were so clustered together that all four were killed when the first claymore went off. They must have been right on top of it," Hendry said.
When the dust had settled and the sun had come up, a sweep of the area revealed the five bodies, one loaded RPG launcher with two rounds plus boosters, two AK-47s and one P-38 pistol.
Warriors Rout NVA Guests
By SP4 ED TOULOUSE
FSB JAMIE - A 25th Division Infantry Company recently evicted four NVA from their illegal residence in the middle of a former American fire base.
The "Warriors" of Delta Company, 2d Battalion, 12th Infantry, were moving in to secure former Fire Support Base Jamie when they discovered the intruders and made the eviction-in the action, killing all four of the enemy.
The unaware Warriors, arriving on the scene by choppers, landed approximately 40 meters outside the wire at "Jamie." Everything was going according to schedule until personnel aboard Battalion Commander Lieutenant Colonel Shepperd H. Phillips' C and C (command and control) ship spotted several enemy inside the perimeter. Guns aboard the chopper immediately engaged the fleeing enemy, killing one while the others vanished into nearby bunkers.
Delta Company moved cautiously towards the suspected enemy positions, which were marked by smoke dropped from aboard the C and C ship.
"The situation was really something else," said 2d Platoon Sergeant Mikel Schow, of Milford, Utah. "It's the first time I've ever had to assault one of our own perimeters."
The elusive enemy was apparently at home inside Jamie.
"We must have searched some of the bunkers three times and still we couldn't find them," recalled Specialist 4 Dave Lakebrink, of Union, Mo.
But the Warriors' persistence paid off. Sergeant Jim Miller, of Stowe, Vt., while looking through a bunker beside a couple of floor boards came "face to muzzle" with two AK-47-armed NVA.
Miller was the first to react. He quickly moved of the line of the two AK's.
"They had a good position and wouldn't rally," said Miller. He called in several of his buddies and, with a few grenades, they made short business of silencing the two enemy.
A short time later a medic, Specialist 4 Dennis Truscott of Nephi, Utah, stumbled onto an NVA soldier occupying a similar underground position. Once again the Warriors used the "indirect approach" to evict this, the last of the unwanted boarders.
You Want To Re-Up, Comrade?
CU CHI - When Nguyen Charlie re-enlisted in the NVA, the AFVN radio re-up plug says he got a bonus - 25 piasters, two bags of rice and OJT as a sapper.
That's just about what Sergeant First Class Calvin H. Irwin of Phoenix, Ariz., got, too, when he reported to Deputy Division Commander Brigadier General John R. Thurman III recently.
The percussion group leader for the 25th Division Band was handed two bags of rice, an envelope containing "25 Dong for Comrade Sgt. C Nguyen Phuoc Irwin" and orders to report as a Sapper's Apprentice.
And, of course, he got the one-day leave before he had to report to Hanoi.
But, when the laughs were over, Irwin, who already has 18 years in the US Army, was happy to settle for three more years in the good ol' green machine.
Page 2 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS July 13, 1970
|SP4 Garth S. Drennan, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav|
DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS
|LTC Robert R. Gosney, HHC, 25th Avn Bn
CPT Roman L. Millett, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
CPT Marvin F. Runyon, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
1LT Terry W. Branham, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
|1LT Larry J. Kastanek, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
1LT George F. Schmalhofer, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
WO1 Michael D. Holder, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
|SSG Luis Martinez, HHC and BAND, DISCOM||SSG Michael T. Stokes, HHC and BAND, DISCOM|
BRONZE STAR (VALOR)
|CPT Michael J. Collier, C Co, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
CPT Gary A. Franklin, Co A, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
CPT John E. Lockner, Co C, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
CPT Byron W. White, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
1LT David W. Carraway, 0 Trp, 3d Sgdn 4th Cav
1LT Richard E. Dodson, HHSB, 7th Bn, 11th Fld Arty
1LT Terrence P. Doherty, A Btry, 7th Bn, 11th Fld Arty
1LT William E. Gay Jr., Co E, 3d Bn, 22d Inf
1LT Edward L. Najim, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
1LT Stephen D. Rennolds, Co B, 2d Bn, 27th Inf
2LT Theodore P. Pytash, Co A, 4th Bn, 9th Inf
WO1 Kenneth Theim, HHC, 3d Bde
1SG Chase P. Mason, Co C, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SFC Harold E. Dunlop, HHC, 2d Bn, 22d Inf
SSG Walter E. Bennet, B Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
SSG Gary D. Berge, Co C, 4th Bn 23d Inf
SSG James M. Haggard, D Trp, 3d Sgdn 4th Cav
SSG David L. Johnson, Co D, 4th Bn, 23d Inf
SSG Paul B. Love, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
SSG William E. Smith, Co A, 2d Bn, 27th Inf
SSG Howard N. Williams, Co C, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SSG Hose M. Yoshida, Co B, 1st Bn, 27th Inf
SGT John J. Bleyer, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
SGT Dennis Chapman, Co C, 4th Bn, 23d Inf
SGT Armon Cloud, Co A 1st Bn, 5th Inf
SGT Carvel Cook, Co C, 4th Bn, 23d Inf
SGT Clive Haws, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf.
SGT John Hendon, Co C, 3d Bn, 22d Inf
SGT Kevin M. Henry, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT Michael A. Hill, Co 0, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT Robert W. Irving, Co C, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT Douglas H. Jenkins, HHC, 2d Bn, 22d Inf
SGT Randall G. Kierski, Co D 2d Bn 12th Inf
SGT Larry D. Knippel, Co B, 1d Bn, 14th Armor
SGT Francis H. Lambert. HHC, 4th Bn, 23d Inf
SGT R. W. Lowe, Co. D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT Ken S. Maxwell, Co E, 3d Bn, 22nd Inf
SGT Patrick McDaniel, Co E, 3d Bn, 22d Inf
SGT James McGee, Co C, 4th Bn, 23d Inf
SGT James R. Miller, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT George Minks, Co C, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT William A. Morton, Co A, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT Edgar Murry Jr, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT JOhn H. Parham III, Co C, 3d Bn, 22d Inf
SGT Anthony Piggott, Co A, 4th Bn, 9th Inf
SGT Richard D. Ramsey, Co E, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT James E. Rowland, Co B, 2d Bn, 34th Armor
SGT Mikel G. Schow, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT Thomas Sines, Co E, 2d Bn 12th Inf
SGT Clyde J. Sparks, HHC, 4th 6n, 23d Inf
SGT John W. Stubbs, Co E, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SGT George E. Wilson, Co D, 3d Bn, 22d Inf
SGT Byron W. Wood, HHC, 2d Bn, 22d Inf
SPS Earl J. Washburn, Co C, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Richard Blackwell, Co A, 4th Bn, 9th Inf
SP4 Philip A. Breland, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
SP4 Roy D. Brigham, Co A, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Michael J. Bryant, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Stephen R. Cole, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
SP4 Eddie D. Cooksey, D Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
SP4 George V. Cox, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Perfecto Cruz, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
SP4 Jack A. Culler, Co C. 2d Bn, 12th Inf
|SP4 Alvin R. Davis, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Thomas W. Davis, Co C, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Henry T. Dobson, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
SP4 Horance Dunham, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Richard S. Fordyce, Co D 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Gary S. Gilton, Co D, 2d Bn 12th Inf
SP4 Steven E. Gruber, HHC, 2d Bn, 22d Inf
SP4 Lyle L. Hagenau, HHC, 2d Bn 22d Inf
SP4 James R. Hall, HHC, 2d Bn, 2~d Inf
SP4 Terry E. Howell, HHC, 4th Bn, 23d Inf
SP4 Leroy Ito, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
SP4 Carl W. Jackson, Co E, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 William C. Jacobs, Co A, 4th Bn, 9th Inf
SP4 Darrell G. Kerny, Co A 4th Bn 9th Inf
SP4 Allen L. King, Co D 2d Bn, 121h Inf
SP4 Richard J. Knapik, eo B, 1st Bn, 27th Inf
SP4 Michael R. Kresky, B Trp 3d Sgdn, 4th Cav
SP4 Dennis P. Louden, Co D, 12d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Max E. McKinnon, HHC 2d Bn,22d Inf
SP4 William A. Miller, Co B, 1 st Bn, 27th Inf
SP4 Joseph O'Leary, Co C, 4th Bn, 23d Inf
SP4 Kenneth Plummer, Co D, 2d Bn 12th Inf
SP4 David Prows, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
SP4 Paul E. SchlIIig, Co C 2d Bn 12th Inf
SP4 Burvin T. Smith, Co D, 3d Bn, 22d Inf
SP4 Allan Storetviet, Co D, 1st Bn, 27th Inf
SP4 Charwin Strother, Co C, 3d Bn, 22d Inf
SP4 Dennis V. Truscott, Co D 2d Bn, 12th Inf
SP4 Albert Werder, Co A, 1st bn, 5th Inf
SP4 Ronald E. Wyrick, Co A 1st Bn, 5th Inf
PFC Gary F. Brady, HHC, 2d 3n, 22d Inf
PFC Bobby W. Burton, HHC, 2d Bn, 22d Inf
PFC Elmer Durazo Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
PFC Jim D. Emberion, B Trp, 3d Sqdn, 4th Cav
PFC Steve A. Emmel, Co C, 4th Sn, 23d Inf
PFC Steven M. Francis, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
PFC Richard D. Green, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
PFC Peter Giyskj,wicz, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
PFC Heinrich Haidin, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
PFC Dean W. Hardman, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
PFC James A. Heppler, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
PFC Luis Jasso, Co C, 2d Bn, 14th Inf
PFC Bernard Johnson, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
PFC Bobby C. Johnson, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
PFC Franklin Krantz, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
PFC William L. Linsey, Co A, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
PFC Phillip Mangum, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
PFC James P. Murphy, Co D,
PFC Luis Ramirez Jr, Co A, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
PFC Ronald Rediger, Co A 1 st Bn, 5th Inf
PFC Edwin A. Schwanke, Co D, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
PFC James E. Sessoms, Co C, 2d Bn, 14th Inf
PFC Robert E. Stewart, Co B, 1st Bn, 27th Inf
PFC Jack Sutherland, Co C, 2d Bn, 14th Inf
PFC Edward Van Leer, Co C, 2d Bn, 14th Inf
PFC Michael Walionra. Co C. 4th Bn. 23d Inf
PFC Kenneth M. Wenrel, B frp, 3d Srgdn, 4th Cav
PFC Mark L. Wiese, HHSB, 7th Bn, 11th Fld Arty
PFC Rodney Wilson, Co B, 1st Bn, 27th Inf
PFC Derek R. Wolcott, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
PFC Joseph H. Woods, Co C, 2d Bn, 12th Inf
PVT Michael A. Hogan, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
PVT Eastman McQueen, Co A, 1st Bn, 5th Inf
Fungus: It's Easy To Get Rid of It
Meet your rainy season foes: Itch and peeling in your toes, Rash and redness are your woes. This is the way the fungus grows.
"Almost every soldier in Vietnam will sooner or later pick up a fungus." So says Deputy Division Surgeon, Captian William A. Bryan from Takoma Park, Md.
An uncomfortable fungus, such as athlete's foot or ringworm (not a worm), is easy to pick up and just as easy to get rid of. Anti-fungal lotion is plentifully available at aid stations and dispensaries.
Persistent cases can be eliminated by a highly effective pill, according to Bryan. Patent medications from the PX may also be available, but are not nearly as reliable.
Keeping clean and dry is the best way to keep fungus from growing in the first place. They like to breed in damp, warm, secluded places, feet and groin are the most common. Frequent showers and dry socks are a must for the rainy season. Medicated powders are helpful.
There are many different kinds of fungus tormenting soldiers in Vietnam, but fortunately they all respond to medication. Symptoms vary, however. Fungi may appear as scaliness of the skin, redness (sometime swollen) or as tiny fluid-filled bumps. All types demand immediate care.
Besides the itch and soreness brought on by fungus, many types produce openings in the skin, which are prime targets for standard bacterial infections.
Driving Too Fast
One Less Lambretta Taxi
By PFC PATRICK F. MURPHY
CU CHI - When a speeding Lambretta taxi meets a Sheridan tank, head on, there can be only one outcome ... one less taxi.
Such an incident occurred recently on Highway QL1 just south of Fire Support Base Devin. When Specialist 4 Gary Esch and Specialist 4 James Armstrong of the 25th Military Police Company arrived at the scene they were unable, at first, to determine what type of vehicle had hit the tank, since the taxi had been totally demolished. The civilian passengers were thrown clear on impact and received only minor cuts and bruises.
"This is fairly typical of the accidents we cover every day," Armstrong of Minneapolis, said. "Excessive speed by both vehicles was the primary cause and poor roads contributed," he added.
Excessive speed is the cause most often cited in traffic accidents. It also accounts for the overwhelming majority of the average 150 traffic tickets given out every month by the MPs. Most violations take place on post where the overall speed limit is 15 m.p.h.
Violators of posted speed limits are not dealt with lightly. While the MPs cannot administer punishment, the GI offender can't simply walk into the police station and pay the fine, a la the world. A citation is sent to the individual's commanding officer. At his discretion, punishment can range up to reduction in grade, forfeiture of pay, extra duty and loss of military driver's license.
While the majority of tickets are issued on the base camp, most accidents occur on the surrounding roads, where the speed limits are higher.
"What most people don't realize is that because the roads are so poor here in Vietnam, driving habits must be tailored to fit the situation," said Esch of Detroit.
"Most of the Vietnamese civilians haven't had much in the way of driver's education. Almost all of GI drivers, however, have had some sort of training before coming over. But they often fail to extend basic driving courtesies to the civilians," said MP Private First Class Jay Thomas of Cambridge, Mass.
"A decrease in speeding and a more general awareness of driving conditions on the part of GI's will help greatly to stem the ever rising accident rate," Thomas said.
Tropic Lightning Tots
The Commanding General Welcomes
The Following Tropic Lightning Tots
To The 25th Infantry Division As
Reported By The American Red Cross.
SGT James Crocker, HHC, 2d Bn, 22d Inf, girl
WOI James N. Seals, 159th Med Bn, girl
SGT Eugene R. Powell, B Btry, 7th Bn, 1 1 th Arty, girl
PFC ROnald Chrabascz, HHC, 65th Engr Bn, boy
2LT Jerry Retzloff, 25th Admin Co, girl
PSG Richard D. Davis, 25th Admin Co, girl
PFC Dwight M. Kirk, HHB, 1st Bn, 8th Arty, boy
The TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS is an authorized publication of the 25th Infantry Division. It is published weekly for all division units in the Republic of Vietnam by the Information Office, 25th Infantry Division, APO San Francisco 96225. American Forces Press Service and Army News Feature materials are used. Views and opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the Department of the Army. Printed in Tokyo, Japan, by Pacific Stars and Stripes.
MG Edward Bautz, Jr . . . . Commanding General
MAJ Warren J. Field . . . Information Officer
1LT John Caspari . . . . . . . Officer-in-Charge
SP4 Charles C. Self . . Editor
SP5 Gary D. Sciortino . . . Assistant Editor
SP4 Joseph V. Kocian . . . Production Supervisor
SGT Bill Oberholzer
SP4 Robert Caplan
SGT Mike Keyster
SP4 Tom Benn
SP4 Brad Yaeger
SP4 Frank Rezzonico
SP4 Frank Salerno
SP4 Henry Zukowski, Jr
SP4 Brian Flaherty
PFC Rob Lato
SP4 Greg Duncan
SP4 Ray Byrne
|SP4 Rich Erickson
SP4 Ed Toulouse
SP4 Doug Sainsbury
SGT Mike Conroy
SGT William E. Zarrett
SP4 Lawrence Merritt
SP4 Rich Fitzpatrick
SP4 Ken Barron
SP4 George Graham
SP5 Tom Watson
SP4 Willaim McGown
PFC James B. Stoup
Page 3 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS July 13, 1970
By 1Lt MARTIN E. WEBB
THIEN NGON - "Pathfinder Control ... Pathfinder Control this is Fog Horn Four Niner . ." groans the squawk box as another chopper swoops down from his flight pattern to hover for a landing on the rock strewn pad of Thien Ngon air field.
Pathfinder control coordinates all air traffic for the choppers and large C-130 transports as they bring in their loads of fuel and supplies for the Second Brigade forward supply point.
But who is Pathfinder Control and where can you find them if you needed a flight out of Thien Ngon?
On a Conex
You won't find them in any kind of office stacked with elaborate radio gear, but rather on the top of a conex with one PRC-25 radio and a weather cock.
Coordinating the air traffic for Second Brigade are PFC Harry R. Evans of Houston, Texas, and Private First Class Rich Peterson of Albany, Oregon, both detached to the brigade from 25th Aviation Battalion Headquarters at Cu Chi.
"The job can get hairy at times," explains Evans. "I had one C-123 getting ready for takeoff a while back. But he was so slow getting on to the strip that I thought he was going to wait."
"Ten miles out another bird was coming in, I gave him the go ahead. As I turned around to look down the strip here this C-123 is getting ready to take off. So now I've got two birds heading right into each other."
"For a moment it shook me up but I just told the other bird to circle and there was no mishap." he said.
All pathfinders are detached to units who call in for pathfinder assistance, according to Evans.
"They usually send us to one place for a month and then rotate us. I was at Dau Tieng with the 1st Cav, 2nd Battalion, 69th Infantry, before I came to Thien Ngon."
To get into the pathfinders is no easy thing, according to Evans. "It's all luck, pure luck. But there are certain requirements. You have to be sling load qualified as well as airborne qualified," he said.
Better Than Scalps
T'hawks Count Booty
By SGT MIKE KEYSTER
FSB KIEN - The count is in and the 4th Battalion, (Mechanized), 23rd Infantry, of the 25th Division, chalked up some impressive totals during its 26-day mission in Cambodia.
The "Tomahawks," working mostly two to six miles from the Vietnam border at Mimot, found over 183 tons of rice. Much of it was captured near the villages of Ph Take and Ph Khley, about two miles from the Vietnam border.
Tomahawk GIs destroyed 354 enemy structures while in Cambodia. Destroyed were 225 bunkers, 100 hootches, six mess halls, 12 class rooms, one training area, three hospital wards, one aid station, and six .51 caliber machine gun emplacements.
Twenty eight individual and two crew-served (Recoilless Rifles) weapons were captured. Those weapons captured included two rocket propelled grenade (RPG) launchers, two light machine guns, seven AK rifles, three SKS rifles, three M-1 carbines, and eight British 303 rifles. The Tomahawks also captured sixty magazines and weapons parts, along with 4,890 small arms rounds. Other items bagged in the 4/23rd Cambodian campaign included 17 RPG rounds, 278 rifle grenades, 41 hand grenades, eight Chi-Com Claymores, one US Claymore, 52 60mm mortar rounds, four 82 mm mortar rounds, one anti-personnel mine and 28 anti-tank mines.
Two field telephones, nine rolls of commo wire, two FM receivers, two tape recorders, and 55 pounds of bicycle parts were among the large amount of miscellaneous items found by the Tomahawks.
Refugees Won't Be
Troops Restore Village
By SP4 RICH WERNER
XA OM, Cambodia - Typical of their Oriental Philosophy the residents of this small village on the Cambodian-Vietnam border stoically accepted the destruction of their property as a consequence of war. They had however planned to move away from their destroyed houses, but plans changed by the intervention of the 25th Division.
The division's 1st Brigade Civic Actions Office was determined to give the civilians a helping hand. Breaking their way through the bush on a convoy of tracks, the Tropic Lightning troopers were met by a much surprised gathering of villagers. A loudspeaker was setup, and an interpreter announced why the GIs had come.
First item on the agenda was the Medical Civic Action Project (MEDCAP), during which the medics were constantly surrounded by a throng of women with crying babies. Altogether, the GIs treated 153 people for everything from cuts and bruises to stomach-aches.
The village chief then organized the men of the village according to household, so they could receive equal amounts of money, food, and building supplies.
"This is one of the most organized operations with the villagers that I have ever seen," commented First Lieutenant David Johnson, of Concord, Mass., Civic Actions Officer.
Each household received 220 pounds of rice, 50 pounds of bulgar wheat, 50 pounds of rolled oats, 50 pounds of corn meal, 50 pounds of powered milk, and two cans of cooking oil - enough to feed a family of four for a month.
Captain Frank Smith, of Arlington, Tex., then distributed money, one thousand Riels per household, to the orderly file of family heads. And later that day, a Chinook (CH-47) dropped more than 400 sheets of tin roofing to help rebuild the homes.
By this time, an air of festivity had settled on the crowd, creating an atmosphere much like that of a picnic back in the States. Children were running everywhere, and the women were busy gossiping about their newly acquired possessions.
"Thanks to the Americans," the village chief told the interpreter, "our plans have been changed. We're staying here and rebuilding our village."
700 For Dinner
By SGT WILLIAM E. ZARRETT
Tay Ninh - Have you ever had seven hundred people in for dinner with just a couple hours warning? This is only routine for the mobile mess hall of the 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry, Manchus.
During the five week "Operation Big Haul" in Cambodia, the Manchu mess hall had to remain constantly prepared to pick up and move, whenever and wherever the tactical situation of the battalion required.
Yet, at the same time, it had to be capable of feeding up to seven hundred men on practically no notice at all.
Resupply was brought in by truck daily to keep the mess hall operating at its peak performance.
Staff Sergeant Jerome Mclaughlin, of New London, Conn., Mess Sergeant, began a normal meal's menu with "...two hundred pounds of potatoes and three to four hundred pounds of meat..."
Cambodia Finds GIs Who Care
PF APACHE - A small Cambodian village near Patrol Base Apache was recently the scene of another demonstration that the men of the 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry, are doing more than just fighting for their return tickets to "the world."
In conjunction with the MEDCAP (Medical Civic Action Project) - ICAP (Integrated Civic Action Project), directed by First Lieutenant Alan Watanabe, of Ewa Beach, Hawaii, the Manchu medics were able to accept the job of distributing food provided by the CARE program.
With the help of an interpreter, the village chief accepted the food on behalf of the approximately fifty families living there. Making up the thousand pounds of food were quantities of rice, wheat, powdered milk, soybean oil and canned fish.
'On Timers' A Little Late
By SP4 TOM BENN
KATUM - 7th Battalion, 11th Arty recently added a chapter to the "If At First You Don't Succeed Story."
The "On Timers" from 7/11th had scheduled an awards ceremony to take place at Alpha Battery's night defensive position in Cambodia. Battalion brass looked forward to the ceremony since it would be the first such awards ceremony in Cambodia as far as anybody knew.
The morning of the ceremony approached, but a low cloud cover hung over the forward command area and Lieutenant Colonel Paul M. Payson, battalion commander, decided to call the ceremony off until the next day.
The second day dawned cloudy, but the clouds were high enough this time to allow the "On Time" commander and his party to fly to the Alpha Battery position located northwest of Memot. Upon landing however, discovered that an oversight had taken place somewhere along the way and a number of medals were missing. The ceremony was called off for the second time.
Payson awoke the third day determined to get the awards presented, "come hell or high water." Again he flew to Alpha Battery, boxfull of medals in tow, and it appeared as if the ceremony would at last come off. Hell didn't come, but high water almost cancelled the ceremony as a rain began falling on an already muddy Night Defensive Position (NPD) shortly after Payson's arrival.
Despite the rain the ceremony took place and twenty-eight members of Alpha Battery who had taken part in the April 29th defense against a sapper attack on Fire Support Base Pine Ridge were awarded their medals.
|CEREMONY IN CAMBODIA -- Member of Alfa Battery, 7th Battalion, 11th Artillery, stand in formation during an awards ceremony at their night defensive position about eight kilometers inside Cambodia. Twenty-eight Redlegs received medals.|
Page 4-5 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS July 13, 1970
Wolfhounds deplane in Cu Chi following their return from Cambodia
Food, Females & Funfare
Hounds Come Home
CU CHI -- It was all smiles when the 1st Batalion, 27th Infantry, arrived in Cu Chi after a month and a half in Cambodia. Multiplying their smiles were a dozen young women from the Chinese Restaurant in Cu Chi, who had volunteered their time to make the occasion festive.
"Fantastic. Fabulous. It really blows your mind," said Wolfhound Specialist 4 William L. Sanders from Thayer, Mo. "We must have something going for us," said Specialist 4 Gordon Powyer of Montesance, Wash. "I haven't ever seen anything like this. It's almost like being home."
The 25th Division band brought sounds to the occasion, and the American Red Cross Girls brought sandwiches and cauldrons of cold drinks to the Wolfhounds and to the 2nd Battalion, 60th Infantry.
The music and the bright-colored outfits of the Vietnamese girls gave the day a carnival air. As Specialist 4 Fred Hastings of San Jose, Calif. put it, "I don't even believe this."
|Wolfhound and friend|
|Even the band turned out for returning troops|
|Girls greeted Wolfhounds returning from Cambodia|
|Back to civilization|
Page 6 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS July 13, 1970
PSYOPS Are Tops
'Squawk Ships' Beckon Weary Foe
By PFC PATRICK F. MURPHY
CU CHI - "The Enemy Has Doubts."
That was the caption on a recent poster put out by the Department of the Army. Playing on these doubts, which are caused by disease, hunger, and heavy troop losses, is the job of the Psychological Operations (PSYOPS) Section of the 25th Division's 3rd Brigade.
Under the direction of 1st Lieutenant John Keever, of Charlotte, N.C., the program was designed to increase the number of ralliers to the Government of The Republic of Vietnam.
One significant aspect of the operation is the use of "squawk ships." These helicopters are equipped with amplifiers that broadcast messages in Vietnamese exhorting enemy troops to "put down your weapons and rally."
Both tapes and "live" messages are used.
Simultaneously, large numbers of leaflets are dropped which carry the same message.
A recent squawk ship mission northwest of Cu Chi was conducted by Specialist 4 Chris Graver, from Chicago and an ARVN interpeter.
"In the event of enemy contact I give the hand mike to the interpreter and he broadcasts to the enemy telling them that their situation is hopeless and further resistance is futile," said Graver.
"A lot of these communist soldiers are really dispirited and have already decided to rally," he added. "We explain to them how to go about it."
Another member of the PSYOPS team is Private First Class Mike Berthelson of Hays, Kan., who mentioned another tactic that is used:
"Often we'll broadcast the names of enemy units and individual soldiers. From talking to the ralliers we've found that this really shakes them up."
Of the 570 ralliers recorded at the Tay Ninh Chieu Hoi Center in May, many mentioned the broadcasts and leaflets in connection with their decision to rally.
Keever summed it up by saying, "This is the closest we can come to face communication with the enemy."
Men. Rap With Commander
By SP4 GREG DUNCAN
CU CHI - Every two weeks, a seemingly strange assemblage takes place in the shade of a bamboo thicket beside the hootch of the Battalion Commander of the 2d Battalion, 27th Infantry "Wolfhounds."
Assembled informally in discussion are the battalion commander, the command sergeant major and two enlisted representatives of each company of the battalion. This is the "Wolfhound Council" in progress.
Shortly after Lieutenant Colonel A.P. Hodges took command of the Second Wolfhounds, a series of incidents took place which led Hodges to believe that there was a possible breakdown in communication and basic human relations within his command.
Flow of Ideas
According to Hodges, the purpose of the council is to provide a vehicle for an informal, free flow of ideas throughout the Wolfhound chain of command, from the lowest enlisted ranks through the battalion commander.
The council meets twice monthly to discuss topics of interest or areas of misunderstanding. The overall objective of these meetings according to Hodges, is to improve the esprit de corps and morale of the battalion and to make it a more effective, professional and tightly knit unit.
The Wolfhound Council consists of two elected enlisted representatives from each company in the rank of E-4 or below, the battalion command sergeant major and the battalion commander, or his field grade representative. In order to have complete representation from each company, one of the two representatives is from a minority racial group.
When the council's first meeting was held, several areas of misunderstanding such as EM-NCO relationships, promotion policies, off-line job selection criteria, and alleged racial discrimination were discussed.
Regarding racial problems, Hodges said, "This battalion has racial problems because our country has racial problems and for no other reason. These problems are not peculiar to one company or another; they are quite similar to those throughout the Army as well as in our society as a whole. They are not complicated. They involve basic human desires such as opportunity, recognition and regard."
Hodges expressed his intention of providing each member of his battalion with equal opportunity and promised that those individuals who took advantage of the opportunities to improve and advance themselves would be recognized and rewarded. He also emphasized the need for working together, not only to improve the battalion, but to better accomplish its missions.
As a result of the first meeting, a number of battalion policies and precedents were established. For example, based on an inquiry from one of the line company representatives, a standard battalion DEROS policy was recently announced. The policy states that under normal circumstances "short timers" would expect to be pulled off line ten days prior to DEROS to enable them to make adequate preparations.
As a result of another discussion, the battalion commander has authorized companies to allow one man per platoon each week to make a PX run for his platoon, provided the tactical situation permits and suitable transportation for the individual is available.
Asked recently what he thinks of the council concept, Specialist 4 Charles Davis of Tuscaloosa, Ala., a representative from Headquarters Company, stated, "I think this is a unique opportunity for the guys to have their opinions expressed. Already we have seen some of the benefits."
ILIKAI EAST BY NIGHT:
WED Floor Show
THU Discussion: "How to Handle a Woman!"
FRI NCO Coffee Call (10 a.m.)
Cookout on Patio (8 p.m.)
SAT Tournaments (2 p.m.)
Filmstrips & Popcorn (7:30 p.m.)
SUN Coffee Call (10 a.m.)
Tournaments (2 p.m.)
Grab Bag Bingo (8 p.m.)
MON Stump the Experts: Panel Show (8 p.m.)
TUE Birthday Party (8 p.m.)
Ask SGT Certain
DEAR SGT CERTAIN: While performing MEDCAPS in Cambodia last month, friendly natives thanked me with gifts of pineapple. Being very fond of the stuff, I stashed it away in 12 burlap bags. When I came back to Vietnam, it took me a whole week to convince G-2 that I hadn't found a cache. By the time I finally got back my pineapples they had fermented. Being resourceful, I emptied the bags into scrubbed-out oil drums, which I am now tapping to get an excellent pineapple wine. The problem is that I'm a better pineapple eater than drinker; what can I do with the stuff?
DEAR MEDIC: Why not dole it out to your friends?
DEAR SARGE: I am an officer in Cu Chi as is my wife. She's a nurse at 12th Evac. We live together and everything is fine. The only problem is that she calls me at the office and gives me little jobs to do. The guys say I'm henpecked and browbeaten. What should I do?
DEAR SIR: If she out-ranks you, you'd better do what she says.
Page 7 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS July 13, 1970
Cu Chi Rat Patrol
By SP4 ROBB LATO
CU CHI - It's not every day that a Hound turns into a Rat. But due to recent enemy activity around the Cu Chi area, a Rat Patrol from the 25th Division's 2nd Hounds was put into action.
The patrol from the 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry, "Wolfhounds," consists of jeeps with mounted machine guns and a point jeep armed with a .50 caliber machine gun.
The squadron makes a formidable nightly guardian of the roads and fields in the Cu Chi area they patrol.
"We check out areas thoroughly and keep a look-out on the side roads and adjoining fields, thus providing security for vehicles that operate in the late evening hours," said Captain Terrence Wong, of Hilo, Hawaii, Echo Company commander.
The jeep patrol embarks on its mission late in the day, usually returning at dusk. Occasionally it stays through the night searching for the enemy.
"By staggering our overnight and dusk operations we are confusing the enemy and forcing him to change his plans," explained Rat Patrol Leader, Sergeant Terry Rhoades, of St. Joseph, Mo. "The VC and NVA are not accustomed to having gun jeeps roving through the night looking for him," he added.
By driving through the back roads and fields, plus a recon of any thick brush on foot, the Hounds are able to hinder enemy activity.
"There are many night patrols around Cu Chi. We try to pick up and pass along intelligence to these patrols in an attempt to make their job easier and more successful," said Rhoades.
"By using jeeps we have fast ground mobility, enabling us to cover numerous areas," said Specialist 4 Willard King, Of Middlesboro, Ky. "A lot of times we have trouble getting our jeeps through the mud holes and the going gets rough out in those fields, but I know we're starting to make it rougher for Charlie too," he said.
|WATCHING FOR MOVEMENT - While other members of the Rat Patrol search nearby areas for signs of the enemy, Specialist 4 Williard King of Middlesboro, Ky., watches for enemy movement.|
Unit Resupply -- Supporting the Line Troopers
By SP4 ED TOULOUSE
KATUM - Need a "Yoke Towing and Lifting Collapsible Fabric Drum?" If so, you can find it, along with approximately 14,000 other items listed in The Army Supply Bulletin.
Filling the daily needs of the men in the field, the 25th Division's 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry, resupply teams - "fortunately," according to the men - are generally only concerned with the more typical combat gear: "Rucksack-Tropical Light Weight," "Mattress-Pneumatic," "Entrenching Tool-Hand," "Poncho-Wet Weather," plus many more items.
The "Warrior" field resupply teams are the mainstay of the battalion's field elements. The ability and resourcefulness of the teams are a result of the quality of their personnel. The importance of resupply can best be realized by those on the receiving end, and for this reason a position the team is usually reserved for one of the grunts who is getting short.
"We know how it was in the field so we try to do our best," said Specialist 4 Ray Cook, of Newport, R.I.
Most of the work of the Warrior resupply teams may be routine, but they supply the men in the field daily with some 1,440 cold sodas, 40 cases of C-rations, and 450 gallons of water, plus mail, hot chow, cigarettes, and anything else needed.
"Once in a while we get some rather unusual requests," said Delta Company Supply Sergeant Harry Herpst of Erie, Pa.. "Just the other day we had a guy ask for an artificial sugar to put in his coffee.
Speed is of the utmost importance in resupply; "instant response" is necessary. Advance warning to be on the "chopper pad" may be from three hours to five minutes.
Occasional emergency resupply also plays a part in the daily plight of the Warriors' logistics schedule. "Recently, we were on the pad from three o'clock in the afternoon until ten that night fulfilling an emergency resupply mission," recalled Staff Sergeant Nick Bastian, from Center Line, Mich.
But it's all worth it. Ask any line troop.
"Resupply has got to be the high point of our day," said Specialist 4 Ed Schwanke, a radio-telephone operator from Rochester, Minn. "Mail and cold sodas are like gold out in the field."
"Supply is not a bad job," said Specialist 4 Joe Haberstadt, of Richmond, Ind. "It's a chance to help your buddy that's still out in the field. Just the other day I sent out a special letter to one of the guys - it contained his discharge orders."
|QUICK OFFLOAD - A Warrior resupply team swarms around a chopper to offload supplies bound for troops in the field. The teams are made up primarily of former line troopers.|
Page 8 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS July 13, 1970
|ON GUARD - Gunner of the 3d Battalion, 22d Infantry, alerts at the sound of nearby artillery. (Photo by SP4 Charles C. Self)|
Choppers Up for Award
By SP4 GEORGE GRAHAM
CU CHI -- A Chinook company of the 269th Aviation Battalion (Combat) headquartered here, has been chosen as a finalist in the National Defense Transportation Award contest sponsored by the Department of Defense.
The 242nd Assault Support Helicopter Company is one of three transportation units in Vietnam to be chosen as a final entrant, and it is the only aviation company vying for the honor.
Finalists from transportation units Army-wide will be judged by a Department of Defense team, and the results will be made known to USARV Headquarters by early August.
In order to enhance the Cu Chi competitor's chances in the final judging, a film was made to show some of the "Muleskinners" activities by a team from the 1st Aviation Brigade, its higher headquarters.
Captain Larry Fureur, executive officer of the Muleskinners, said that it was obvious that a Chinook company would be chosen as a finalist in any transportation contest, since a CH-47 can go just about anywhere, carrying anything, with little regard to weather conditions, since they are heavier than the standard-sized ships. Major Allen W. Hammerbeck of Green Cove Springs, Fla., commanding officer of the 242nd, mentioned that the Muleskinners' record for inventiveness and dependability are the main factors in qualifying the company as a final contestant, and may be the reason if it wins the award.
"Working with the 25th Infantry Division, our major supported unit," said Hammerbeck, "we initiated three very important supply techniques that are now being used by other units."
The "round-robin" allows support materials for more than one fire support base to be carried on a single mission. The "enroute sortie" technique means that a Chinook will drop supplies on its scheduled route from one point to another.
The "forward supply" concept means that new supply points, with goods brought in by fixed wing aircraft, have been established closer to troop operations. For instance, instead of depending on just Cu Chi or Tay Ninh as a resupply point, the Chinooks can supply far-flung units by using Thien Ngon or Katum, forward supply points for the 25th's Cambodian operations.
In addition to its competition in the transportation contest, the Muleskinners were recognized - as a result of its quantitative performance - as the outstanding aviation company from Vietnam to compete in the National Defense Transportation Association Award Contest in 1969.
Triple Threat Triple Deuce
By SP4 HENRY G. ZUKOWSKI
CAMBODIA - The recent US offensive in Cambodia featured a triple operation by the 2d Battalion (Mechanized), 22d Infantry, which made the enemy a three-time loser.
In the first stage, the mechanized battalion moved toward Tasous, Cambodia, south of the Dog's Face. During one day's operation, the Scout Platoon and Alfa Company engaged the enemy several times, killing nine and suffering no American losses. Later, Alfa encountered another large hostile force. Although the enemy used RPGs (rocket propelled grenades), machine guns, mortars, and small arms, the "Triple Deuce" troops again suffered no casualties while wiping out 10 of the enemy.
"Teamwork pulled us through the action without a scratch," said First Lieutenant Frank Ratka, of Foley, Minn., Scout Platoon leader.
Further searches in the area turned up five more enemy killed, more than 70 tons of foods, 56 sampans, over 3,000 AK rounds, 20 120mm mortars, more than 2,000 NVA uniforms, 35 RPG and grenade rounds, and 120 pounds of machine and radio equipment.
In the operation's second phase, the battalion's armored personnel carriers moved to Krek, Cambodia.
Working on air intelligence; the GIs uncovered a large trucking station containing sixteen wheeled vehicles, four tractors, one bulldozer, 32 bicycles, a Volkswagon sedan and hundreds of gallons of fuel.
Continuing probes in the surrounding area produced several scattered contacts during which the Americans killed 20 enemy and captured eight. In the area the GIs also found 1500 gallons of fuel, more than 100 tons of food, and other miscellaneous supplies.
The third phase "produced many food caches," said current Battalion Commander, Lieutenant Colonel Nathan Vail, of Oxonhill, Md. Operating along Highway 24, the "Triple Deuce" found one hundred tons of rice and over 70 tons of wheat and barley.
The Hulk: Uplifts The 725th
"The Hulk" grunted and groaned as it moved the massive equipment into place. When it needed help, "Boom Boom" came over and the two loaded the "Dragon Wagon."
That's how the men over at the Headquarters and Company A, 725th Maintenance Battalion's Service and Evacuation Section talk. And it's how they had to talk to get the more than 1,500 pieces of equipment moved to Long Binh as they did during the past six months.
The Hulk and Boom Boom are two M-88-Recover Vehicles. Together they make an effective twosome that can manipulate practically any piece of equipment onto the back of a vehicle such as the 50-ton "Dragon Wagon."
The operator of the Hulk, Specialist 5 Frank A. Shea, of Orange County, Calif., said that "the only danger will be the cable snapping, but even then, it'll sing out before it snaps."
The trip to Long Binh is routine for most of the men but they have to be extremely conscious of safety. Before they move out, they must place tie-down straps or chains on each item. A stop usually is made about half-way and the men tighten the fastens that have loosened.
Cu Chi Opens Free Photo Lab
By SP4 JOSEPH V. KOCIAN
CU CHI - Commanding General Edward T. Bautz recently cut the ribbon on a new photo lab at Cu Chi Base Camp. The lab, located next to the Special Services Library, is available free of charge to all 25th Division personnel.
The photo lab is equipped with four enlargers capable of printing pictures from almost any size negatives. A separate area is provided for developing negatives, which contains all necessary chemicals and equipment. The darkroom is equipped to handle black and white film as well as some types of color slides.
Hours for the photo lab are from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Reservations are necessary for using the enlargers, but not for film processing.
Special equipment is also available for mounting photographs and duplicating color slides.
Specialist 5 Arthur H. Newsome of Washington, D.C. is photo lab supervisor. Newsome or one of his two assistants will be available at all times to aid photo-bugs through developing procedures. There is a minimal charge for supplies used.
Ion Gun Unbeaten
By SP4 CARROLL HINES
KATUM, -- The medics of Delta Company, 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry, "Tomahawks", have been working for weeks on a "secret weapon" at this 25th Division base camp. It has finally been completed and is awaiting trial by fire.
Medics, Specialist 5 Jim Needlands, of Deland, Fla., and Sergeant Mike Schroeder, of Ft. Wayne, Ind., have developed a revolutionary new weapon they call the "Ion Plasma Ray Gun," or IPRG.
According to Needlands, "The gun has interchangeable receiving chambers for 70 or 30 cc. ammo. It has a 20 gauge, five inch, nickel plated barrel and a 4.5 inch barrel extension. It also has an optional parabolic reflector, but it is being repaired at the moment.
"We haven't had it up to full power yet," said Schroeder, "but we're pretty sure it will scare away anything within 500 meters."
The Ray Gun was made from unusable spare parts put together by the medics, and set up in front of their night defensive position to ward off evildoers. And while it may not anything, it sure does look ferocious.
|SECRET WEAPON - The new "Ion Plasma Ray Gun" gets zeroed in. Medics of the 4th Battalion, 23d Infantry (Mech), devised the weapon to scatter the enemy. Hopefully they'll see it and run. (Photo by SP4 Carroll Hines)|
The 25th Division Information office is looking for experienced writers, photographers, broadcasters and journalists to help cover division activities.
Any person who has worked in any of these fields may be granted an interview at the Division Information Office at Headquarters in Cu Chi.
Andrew Beiler, 1st Bn., 27th Inf., for sharing this issue,
Kirk Ramsey, 2nd Bn., 14th Inf. for creating this page.
This page last modified 05-24-2006
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