Vol 2 No. 45 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS November 13, 1967
|Unit Page||Unit Page||Unit Page||Unit Page|
|1/5 1||2/14 1||2/77 Arty 8||3/13 Arty 1|
|1/5 Photos 4||2/22 3||25th Avn Bn 1||3/13 Arty 6|
|1/27 1||2/27 1||25th DivArty 3||4/23 6|
|1/27 3||2/27 Photo 1||246 Psych 8||6/77 Arty 8|
|1/27 3||2/27 3||3/4 Cav 1||M-16 7|
|1/27 6||2/27 Photo 6||3/4 Cav Photo 1||Martha Raye 8|
|187th AHC 8||2/27 8||3/4 Cav Photo 3||Montagnards 2|
|2nd Bde 3||2/34 Armor 8||3/4 Cav 6||Penang 2|
|2/12 Photo 3|
Cong Hit Hard By 'Wolfhounds'
The 1st Bn, 27th Inf "Wolfhounds," recently killed 17 Viet Cong in a furious eight-hour battle fought deep in the Boi Loi Woods.
Enemy soldiers fired automatic weapons and small arms from a large well-fortified base camp complete with heavy bunkers and interconnecting trenches and tunnels.
Contact first came as the unit's Delta Co swept the battalion's night base camp perimeter. Two armed Viet Cong were sighted and taken under fire. Moments later the U.S. unit was laced by heavy enemy fire.
Fire came from small apertures in the bunkers and soldiers reported many Viet Cong snipers fired from trees around the base camp.
LTC David R. Hughes of Colorado Springs, Colo., maneuvered the remainder of the battalion against the enemy positions, but fire was so heavy that movement was slowed to a crawl.
Friendly and enemy soldiers were in such close contact that supporting artillery could not immediately be called in.
The battle raged under the light of flares until after midnight. In the fighting the Wolfhound battalion sustained seven killed and 31 wounded.
During the night contact was broken and pursuit was made impossible by jungle so thick that grenade launcher fire bounced off trees. In many cases artillery did not penetrate the jungle canopy.
When the unit swept the area at first light, they found a base camp so extensive that Bde Commander COL Edwin W. Emerson called it the most complex system of bunkers and trenches he had ever seen.
By midmorning, battalion intelligence officers had counted 17 bodies and estimated that many more had been dragged off when the Viet Cong force fled.
Later in the day as the battalion swept the immediate area, supporting helicopter gunships engaged an estimated eight-man Viet Cong force and accounted for three VC killed.
2nd Bn Kills 28 VC
In eight hours of continuous contact with enemy forces in Hau Nghia Province 16 kms north of Saigon, a 25th Inf Div unit killed 28 Viet Cong and detained another two.
Five U.S. infantrymen were killed in the engagement and 11 were wounded.
Contact began soon after noon Oct. 31, when an "Eagle Flight" by the 2nd Bn, 27th Inf "Wolfhounds," produced heavy contact.
Viet Cong forces broke contact and the U.S. battalion's Charlie Co pursued, but ran into a hail of fire from Viet Cong in strongly fortified bunkers.
Two more companies were maneuvered in to support Charlie Co and the battle raged under aerial flares until after 9 p.m.
The Viet Cong, a company-size force of the Go Non Battalion, layed down heavy fire with automatic weapons and antitank rocket launchers. Two Russian AK-47 rifles, one RPG-2 rocket launcher and a Chinese machine-gun were captured.
At first light, the battalion, already counting 18 Viet Cong dead, swept through the area and found that the VC had left the battlefield littered with dead, an extremely unusual occurrence. Ten more bodies were found in the sweep.
The battle took place in monsoon-flooded rice paddies just north of Saigon. Flares illuminating the battlefield could be seen from downtown Saigon.
Though details have not been reported, numerous instances of heroism were cited by field commanders.
The 25th Inf Div Arty took a big step forward when a battalion of self-propelled howitzers made a successful night march against elements of the 271st Viet Cong Regiment.
Headquarters, C and D battery's of the 3rd Bn, 13th Arty, made the historic night march, first of its kind, after being given a commitment to support an airmobile assault of the 1st Bn, 27th Inf, the next day.
At 10 p.m. a contingent of the 3rd Sqdn, 4th Cav, arrived at the entrance to the fire support base 11 kms south of Tay Ninh to provide an escort. Under the leadership of LTC Thomas H. Ball, commander of the 3rd Bn, 13th Arty, the convoy proceeded south using blackout drive. The 51-vehicle convoy rumbled steadily through the night until Viet Cong were spotted in a rice paddy near the edge of a rubber plantation. After a brief halt while the area was raked with 40mm shells, the convoy proceeded to Go Dau Ha without further incident.
Entering Go Dau Ha during the early morning hours the battalion rested until dawn when they proceeded northeast to the hamlet of Bao Don.
At the new fire support base 155mm and 8-inch howitzers were deployed and were readied for firing by 7:58 a.m. - two minutes before the tentative arrival time.
105 Take The Oath
One hundred and five re-enlistments were logged in by the 25th Div during October, setting a new monthly record for Vietnam-based divisions, according to CPT Sterling Clark.
In releasing the figures, Clark, who is the division's reenlistment officer, stated that 71 of the re-enlistees were first-term RAs and USs. "Actually we've set two new records - number of total reenlistments and total number of first-term reenlistments."
Figures released recently by U.S. Army Vietnam headquarters show that the 1st Div had held the record since last May with a total of 91 for the month.
Clark explained that these figures are for division-size units. Logistical command units are not included because of their manpower strength.
|WET GOING - Soldiers of Charlie Co, 2nd Bn, 27th Inf wade through a monsoon-swollen stream in search of the elusive Viet Cong. (Photo by SP4 Joe Carey)|
Small Boy Aids Troops
With the help of a six-year-old Vietnamese boy, 25th Inf Div soldiers recently disarmed and destroyed an ingenious Viet Cong boobytrap.
Early one morning, a small boy approached a Vietnamese Popular Forces outpost near Thai My and informed the soldiers he knew the location of a mine.
The soldiers escorted the youngster to the 1st Bn (Mech), 5th Inf, forward base camp and told the Americans the story.
A patrol was sent out with the boy leading the way. Through an interpreter, he explained that the mine was hidden in a thick hedgerow nearby.
"The kid was scared to walk too close to the hedgerow," said PFC Ronald Daum, a radio operator from Eaton, Ohio. "One of the PF soldiers picked the boy up and carried him close enough to point out the exact location."
After several minutes of probing with bayonets, the mine was uncovered.
"The VC had taken an anti-personnel mine, placed it on an antitank mine, and buried them both in the soft earth," Daum explained.
"To top things off, they had secured a long bamboo pole to the detonator and placed the pole about an inch off the ground. If a soldier had stepped on the pole or a personnel carrier had run over it the whole thing would have blown sky high."
Teamwork Nets Cong In The HoBo Woods
Close teamwork between 25th infantrymen and gunships smashed a Viet Cong squad in the HoBo Woods recently.
Alpha Co of the 2nd Bn, 14th Inf, had moved about 500 meters outside their perimeter when the lead platoon drew heavy automatic weapons fire.
"The VC were only about 15 meters away from us when they opened up," recalled point man PFC Caliph Bradford of Oroville, Calif. "As I took cover and started firing, I saw about five VC run into a treeline."
Alpha's rear platoon began to maneuver to the enemy's flank and the gunships from Alpha Co, 25th Avn Bn, swept into the area.
The "Little Bear" ships cut down two of the enemy - one of whom was armed with a Russian AK-47 assault rifle.
Then, as the search platoon moved in, another Viet Cong broke from cover, but was cut down before he could escape.
No trace was found of the other two Viet Cong. There were no U.S. casualties.
|NICE SHOT - LTC John Shea, 3rd Sqdn, 4th Cav, commander, fires captured CHICOM RPG-2 at damaged hull of a M-48 tank to test the effect of the PSP panels. MAJ David Hereford, squadron executive officer, serving as loader crouches nearby. (Photo by SP4 Pullen)|
Page 2 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS November 13, 1967
The true danger is, when liberty is nibbled away, for expedients, and by
|DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS|
|CPT Mark S. Carr, 45th Med Co (AA)||1LT Jack L. Zelsman, Co A, 25th Avn Bn|
BRONZE STAR (VALOR)
1LT John J. Ricca, B Btry, 7th Bn, 11th Arty
1LT Luther B. Dewalt, Co C, 4th Bn, 23rd lnf
SP5 Larry L. Denison, B Trp, 3rd Sqdn, 4th Cav
SP4 Charles 0. Campbell, Co A, 4th Bn, (Mech), 23rd lnf
SP4 Michael W. Young, Co A, 2nd Bn, 14th lnf
SP4 Kenneth E. Shipley, Co A, 2nd Bn, 14th lnf
SP4 Lloyd L. Jackson, Co A, 2nd Bn, 14th
PFC Charles E. George, B Trp, 3rd Sqdn, 4th Cav
BRONZE STAR (MERIT)
CPT Ronald W. Lind, HO & SVC Btry, 2nd Bn, 77th Arty
1LT Byron A. Schneider, HHC, 2nd Bde
1LT John E. Sweeney, Co A, 3rd Bn, 22nd lnf
1LT John R. Stolfi, HHC, 3rd Bn, 22nd Inf
2LT James B. Forshee, Co A, 4th Bn, 9th Inf
2LT Carl R. Wermuth, Co B, 2nd Bn, 14th lnf
CW2 Raymond C. Shinkle, Co E, 725th Maint Bn
SFC Felix B. Fernandez, Co A, 25th S&T Bn
SFC' Kenneth E. Harries, HHC 3rd Bde
SSG Lewis T. Gee, HHC, 25th Inf Div
SSG Jay Lawing, HHD, 125th Sig Bn
SSG John P. Geforth, C Btry, 2nd Bn, 77th Arty
SSG Earl H. Taylor, C Btry, 2nd Bn, 77th Arty
SSG James R. Trzaska, Co B, 2nd Bn (Mech), 22d lnf
SSG Richard Bartels, Co B, 2nd Bn (Mech), 22nd lnf
SSG James R. Trzaska, Co B, 2nd Bn (Mech), 22d Int
SSG Harlon Webb Jr., Co E, 65th Engr Bn
SSG Billy R. Bradley, HHB, 25th Inf Div Arty
SSG Robert J. Arnold, HO Btry, 2nd Bn, 77th Arty
SSG Robert V. Carmody, HHC, 3d Bn, 22nd Inf
SSG Lyndel McKamiel, HO & Co A, 725th Maint Bn
SP5 Ralph D. McAbee, HHC, 1st Bn, 27th Inf
|SGT Jerry Shramek, Co C, 2nd Bn, 14th Inf
SGT Conrado A. Visperas, HHD, 125th Sig Bn
SGT Herman L. Davenport, Co B, 2nd Bn, 27th Inf
SGT Larry N. Forehand, C Btry, 2nd Bn, 77th Arty
SP5 David L. Bolte, Co E, 65th Engr Bn
SGT Dennis L. Davis, HHC, 2nd Bde
SGT Harry Halstead Jr., HHC, 25th lnf Div
SGT Billy Harvey, Co B, 125th Sig Bn
SGT Jack L. Holder, 25th Admin Co
SGT Raymond E. Petherbridge, HHC, 25th Inf Div
SGT Aubrey E. Ponds, Co C, 1st Bn, 27th lnf
SGT Theron E. Price, HHC, 1st Bde
SGT Arthur D. Twigg, 25th Admin Co
SGT Richard McIntire, Co C, 4th Bn (Mech), 23rd Inf
SGT David M. Roach, Co C, 2nd Bn, 27th Inf
SP5 David J. Crumbaugh, HHC, 65th Engr Bn
SP5 James V. Kennelly, HHC, 2nd 27th lnf
SP5 Garrett Littlejohn, HHT, 3rd Sqdn, 4th Cav
SGT Louis M. Oberman, Co A, 1st Bn (Mech), 5th lnf
SGT James F. Root, Co A, 25th S&T Bn
SP5 William O. Wallen, HHC, 2d Bn, 27th lnf
I don't know your name or your age or anything about you, other than the fact that you are an American serviceman, separated from family, friend, loved-ones and country, enduring many hardships and sacrificing much just to keep our country free. And that is why I am writing you - - to say THANKS from the bottom of my heart for all you are doing. I pray for the safe return of all of you, and want you to know that
WE DO CARE ABOUT YOU.
Many thanks from A GRATEFUL AMERICAN.
Miss Elaine Reininger
Enemy Use Of Terror Suffers Big Setback In Highlands
The Viet Cong leadership has experienced at least one major failure in the use of terror. This came in the Highlands in the summer of 1962 and involved the Montagnards. After years of patiently cultivating the Montagnards, the Viet Cong leadership apparently came to the conclusion that the policy had not paid off and that a harder line was in order.
It was true that despite concentrated efforts, the Montagnards remained hostile to the Viet Cong. The government's resources control program in the Highlands (where it is possible to starve to death) and the organizational work among the Montagnards, chiefly by the American Special Forces teams, combined to create an inhospitable climate in the Highlands for Viet Cong Cadres. When food became short, these Cadres under the new policy did not hesitate to take the food of the Montagnard and allow him to go hungry.
This Viet Cong program was designed to coerce them into supporting, feeding, and generally assisting the guerrilla bands operating in the mountains. The Montagnards response to this was traditional: The people of a whole village would vanish in a single night and go as refugees to government military or civilian centers.
Total Montagnard exodus may have reached as high as 300,000 persons, more than a third of the total Montagnard population in Vietnam. Eventually most of these people were relocated and a number of them were recruited into anti-guerrilla Civilian Irregular Defense Groups.
Save $ In Nam
If you had $1,000 when you got back to the U.S., what would you do with it?
Make a down payment on a new car? Have a big vacation with your wife? Buy a color television?
You can save that $1,000 painlessly and easily. Go to your personnel office and make out a U.S. Savings Bond allotment for a $100 bond each month.
The cost is $75 - hostile fire pay plus a little of your Federal Income tax exemption.
In 12 months you will have invested $900 and will have earned more than $20 in interest. That is not $1,000? So buy an extra bond some month!
|Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, like men, undergo
the fatigue of supporting it.
Planning On Enjoyable R&R?
Penang Beckons Servicemen
SAIGON (MACV) - Some 550 air miles from Saigon, a jewel of an island lies in the Straits of Malacca off the west coast of the Malay Peninsula inviting U.S. servicemen to a memorable R&R leave.
It is Penang, not exactly on the beaten path but its 340,000 people are said to live in a quiet way that beckons everyone who would like to get away from it all for awhile.
The chief city on Penang is Georgetown. Here the R&R visitor will find accommodations in excellent hotels to ease him into five days of carefree living with the expectation of spending each day in a different manner.
What is there to do?
Deep sea fishing, water skiing and swimming are readily available for the active.
The staff of the R&R detachment, which operates a processing center 24-hours daily in the lobby of the Hotel International, provides information on tours, restaurants, entertainment and many other things that will make the visit enjoyable.
Shopping for souvenirs or gifts is another of the attractions of Penang, a free port and consequently one of the least expensive areas in the Far East for Armed Forces shoppers.
Cameras, jewelry and pewterware are among the top buys.
The annual calendar of events on the island includes many unusual observances and holidays as well as periodic scheduling of horse racing, the "Sport of Kings."
The rate of exchange is $2.90 Malay for one U.S. dollar. It goes a long way towards making an R&R trip to Penang the choice of those who want the most for their dollar.
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. Army News Features, Army Photo Features, Armed Forces Press Service and Armed Forces News Bureau material 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.
Maj.Gen. F. K. Mearns . . . . . . . . . . . Commanding General
Maj. Bernard S. Rhees . . . . . . . . . . . Information Officer
1Lt. Larry Rottmann . . . . . . . . . . . . . Officer-in-Charge
SP4 Dave Cushman . . . . . . . . . . . . . Editor
SP5 Terry Richard . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Editorial Assistant
Page 3 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS November 13, 1967
Arty forward Observer Must Have Sixth Sense
"You just can't attribute it to luck," said MSG Alan Curtis from Lawton, Okla., when talking about his added job as an artillery forward observer with the 25th Inf Div. "It's something that just seems to click in your mind without having to stop and think about it," he continued.
Curtis, Noncommissioned Officer-In-Charge of the 25th Div Arty Intelligence Section, was telling how the little, almost unseen things make the big difference to the "eyes of the artillery," and keep the enemy on the move.
Having more than 60 possible kills from called in and adjusted artillery, Curtis should know what he is talking about.
"Take for example one day last week," he related. "We were cruising along over War Zone C when all of a sudden something caught my eye, so I told the pilot to swing left for another look. I couldn't tell him what it was we were looking for because I had no idea what had called my attention to this one particular area.
"But sure enough, on the second pass there were three VC standing beneath a tree," he said. "Thinking about it now I'm still not sure why I told the pilot to take another look. Perhaps one of them had moved a little, or maybe the shadows just didn't look right, but something told me to take a closer look."
Artillery was called in and shortly, three more possible VC killed were added to the list.
"It takes numerous missions to make a good artillery observer," Curtis said. "For example," he explained, "a while back one of our rounds landed right in the middle of a jungle trail. The next morning when flying over the area I noticed a freshly made path around the shell crater. This told me to keep my eye on that area for VC activity.
"It wasn't a big thing," he 'went on, "but it's small things like this that you need to make note of. A new observer would probably have missed it," he added.
"In all, a good percentage of the 25th Inf Div's monthly enemy body count can be attributed to these eyes of the artillery," Curtis concluded.
Discovery Surprises Company
A surprised 25th Inf Div company discovered a large Viet Cong tunnel just 500 meters from their night position.
The 1st Bn, 27th Inf "Wolfhounds," taking part in the 2nd Bde Operation "Kolekole" set up their night perimeter late in the evening after a search and destroy mission 72 kms northwest of Saigon.
The company's night security fell just short of the underground complex.
As they moved out the next morning, advance elements discovered that they had neighbors during the night without realizing it. "The VC must have been there less than 24 hours ago," said Squad Leader SP4 Louis Arasate of Bangor, Maine, "There were fresh footprints all over the place."
Tunnel rats turned up parts of four anti-personnel boobytraps. As the company moved on, engineers destroyed the complex with explosives.
|PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT - A member of the 3rd Sqdn, 4th Cav's Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol (LRRP) braces his feet ready to swing clear of the helicopter and slide some 100 feet to the ground, during a training session at the 25th Div's base camp at Cu Chi. (Photo By PFC George Hairston)|
Viet Cong Surprised By Soldier
A 25th Inf Div soldier has seen his share of the war's many faces, but the latest one, he recalls, was much too close for comfort.
PFC Larry McLaughlin was on a combat sweep with the 1st Bn, 27th Inf "Wolfhounds," as part of the 2nd Bde Operation "Kolekole."
"I was on the far end of the sweep," McLaughlin recalls, "when I saw a hootch to my right and went to search it. As I walked around a corner I stumbled into a hole and fell down.
"At first I was mad," he says, "but then I looked up and saw an armed Viet Cong at the other side of the building.
"He must have been as scared as I was because he stared just long enough for me to take my weapon off safety and fire in his direction," he said.
McLaughlin missed and the VC fled. The U.S. soldier admitted later that he was glad to see the enemy soldier go. "I was in a pretty awkward position with both feet in that hole," he explained.
Another member of McLaughlin's unit fired but again the VC escaped.
His luck ran out, however, when he ran up against a helicopter gunship orbiting the area. He was killed by a burst of aerial machine gun fire.
Buddies Have Close Call
DAU TIENG - SP4 Roger Baldwin and PFC George McAdams from Nashville, Tenn., have experienced a number of things together since attending basic at Fort Carson, Colo., but nothing quite like their first time on a listening post 150 meters in front of their battalion's perimeter.
Baldwin, from Helion, Ind., was McAdams' squad leader in basic and advanced infantry training. They arrived in Vietnam together and were both assigned to the reconnaissance platoon in the 2nd Bn, (Mech) 22nd Inf, 3rd Bde, 25th Inf Div.
Recently they manned a listening post to check on enemy movements.
That afternoon they went out into the rubber plantation and dug a small three-man foxhole. When night came they crawled out, set up a claymore and called in on their field telephone, "LP one, ready!"
"The hardest thing I've found is to stay awake," said Baldwin. "There wasn't any moon out that night, and the night penetration devices weren't working too good in the rubber." Only two weeks in country, they stayed awake all night.
Around midnight they began to hear some of the enemy sneaking up. When they called in they were ordered to get down into their hole so the line could recon by fire with their machine guns.
"That stuff was coming over only inches above my head," said McAdams, "but it kept Charlie away."
The night dragged away and, after a few more fire missions, began to lighten to a new day.
At dawn the three crawled in with their equipment and went to their individual APC's to get a few hours sleep. McAdams commented, "They didn't tell us about this in basic. I'm never going to get used to this no matter how long I stay over here."
2nd Bde Is Aided
Viet Cong ralliers under the "Chieu Hoi" program led soldiers of the 25th Inf Div's 2nd Bde to Viet Cong forces or storage sites fifteen times in a recently completed one month period.
In reporting the figures, brigade intelligence officers said the count only included cases where the result was destruction of Viet Cong soldiers or materials.
"The 'Chieu Hoi' rallier has been an extremely effective source of intelligence," explained CPT Larry Garlock of Cleveland, Tenn. "In many cases they took us to places impossible to find without a lead."
5 Saved By Medic
A 25th Inf Div medic recently placed his life on the line when a fellow medic going to the aid of a boobytrap victim was himself wounded by one.
SP5 Charles Siebrasse of Sycamore, Ill., was on a search and destroy mission with the 2nd Bn, 27th Inf "Wolfhounds," when a soldier breaking through a hedgerow detonated a boobytrap.
A medic near the front of the column rushed to his aid but he too tripped one of the explosive devices wounding himself and four others.
Ignoring the danger of the heavily boobytrapped hedgerow, Siebrasse plunged into it to treat the wounded men.
Five men Siebrasse treated were evacuated to a 25th Div hospital, a sixth died from massive fragment wounds.
|IT'S ROUGH GOING - SP4 Dennis Dunklee of Elroy, Wisc., a rifleman from HHC, 2nd Bn, 12th Inf, maneuvers himself through the dense jungle during a search and destroy mission southeast of Dau Tieng. (Photo By PFC Joseph Hettermann)|
Page 4-5 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS November 13, 1967
Mech Troops Take to Swamps
US Army Photos By SGT Roger Smith
|SOME MEN ASSEMBLE RAFTS WHILE OTHERS MOVE TO A PERIMETER.|
|CREWS KEEP SHARP LOOKOUT WHILE PROBING SWAMP FLOOR WITH BAMBOO POLES TO DETECT CACHES.|
|SOLDIERS OF THE 1ST BATTALION (MECH), 5TH INFANTRY "SWAMP PATROL" CAUTIOUSLY PADDLE DEEP INTO THE HAU NGHIA SWAMP.|
|LOOKING FOR VC, RAFTS HEAD DOWN AN ENEMY SAMPAN TRAIL.|
|TROOPS INFLATE RAFTS AND LOAD UP TO PUSH OUT INTO THE DEEP SWAMP.|
|EACH THREE-MAN RAFT COLLAPSES INTO A UNIT THAT CAN BE CARRIED BY A SINGLE SOLDIER.|
Page 6 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS November 13, 1967
Progress Being Made In Securing Highway 1
Quick and highly visible progress is very gratifying.
In September and through October the 3rd Sqdn, 4th Cav, was making frequent contact with the enemy on Highway 1 north of Cu Chi. During the earlier part of September an incident occurred almost every other night. The road is far more secure now.
The 25th Inf Div's Cav unit's mission is to secure the road. It is not an easy task.
The actions, scattered over the past two months, netted 11 Viet Cong by actual body count. The squadron estimated that another 31 Viet Cong had been killed.
Two RPG-7 rocket launchers were captured the night of Sept. 12. An RPG-2 was also captured during that action. Several carbines and much small arms ammunition has been captured by the squadron.
The frequency of the contacts dropped. In an effort to secure the road and the surrounding areas during the Oct. 22 elections, the entire squadron went to the field for five days.
The headquarters' elements established a forward command point near Go Dau Ha, 44 kms northwest of Saigon. The squadron's four troops were dispatched in around-the-clock security vigilance.
Delta Troop (Air) maintained aerial security. Its Aerorifle Platoon was active in "roundups." Working with the National Police the platoon checked ID cards in various areas near Cu Chi.
The other three troops were on the road, holding various sectors of responsibility. There was only one casualty during the election vigil. The man was returned to duty the same day.
The election went by without mishap. Record crowds went to the polls, ignoring Viet Cong threats. Progress has been made.
|GOOD IDEA - 1 LT Phillip Zingarelli of Braintree, Mass., a platoon leader with the 2nd Bn, 27th Inf. "Wolfhounds," displays his method for drying out socks during the monsoon season. Zingarelli was following the advice of Army doctors to change into dry socks once a day. (Photo by 1 LT Al Karel)|
Villagers Aid Old
Following the example of a 25th Inf Div unit, the people of a hamlet near the HoBo Woods have started an aid program of their own.
The miniature project came to light when the S-5 of the 4th Bn, 23rd Inf, 1LT Gary Strohm of Phoenix, Ariz., delivered a load of rice to the hamlet of Trung Hoa.
"After the rice was distributed, the old village chief ordered an empty basket to be brought forward," Strohm said. "Each of the families in the hamlet then filed by it, tossing in a cup of their rice."
Puzzled, Strohm questioned the chief and discovered that the basket was for an elderly man in the hamlet who was mentally retarded and unable to fend for himself.
VC Escape Fails
Army ground radar is uncanny at detecting Viet Cong attempting to sneak into American positions, but 25th Inf Div radar operator SP4 Walter Jones says ears are better when the VC is going the other way.
Jones, from White Plains, N.Y., was listening for the telltale beeping in his radar headset recently as he guarded a 1st Bn, 27th Inf "Wolfhounds," night base camp.
A Viet Cong soldier, evidently trapped when the U.S. soldiers set up their perimeter around his tunnel entrance, waited until late at night to escape.
As he moved across the perimeter and into a nearby rice paddy, a bolt of lightning gave Jones a glimpse of a moving figure.
Ripping off his headphones, he listened carefully to confirm what he had seen. The sound he heard was a grenade thrown by the VC bouncing into his position.
The blast, five feet away, hurled Jones to the ground but he answered back with a burst from his M-16 rifle. Then he reported the action and just sat still. "I've never been so scared in my whole life," he said later.
The next morning a fifty foot blood trail led the soldiers to the VC, killed by Jones' rifle fire.
If the postman on a certain route in St. Louis groans every time he sees the name of Miss Patricia Nash on an envelope, it's because he's delivered 1000 letters to her in seven days.
These letters were written by SGT Arnold L. Theobald from the 3rd Bn, 13th Arty, during a nine-month period. "I wrote at least five letters a day," explains Theobald, "but only mailed two."
According to Theobald, who rotates this month, he held back on the remaining letters with plans to mail them all within a five-day period.
Page 7 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS November 13, 1967
Cathy Has The Info On LSA!
Men, I'm not an expert on the M-16, but I do know a good thing when I see it,
and this new LSA is great for lubing your M-16 or M-16A1.
It does a better job on the working parts, especially in a muggy-wet climate like we have here . . . it lasts longer . . . it really protects metal surfaces.
Here's the stock number that'll fetch it for you: FSN 9150-889-3522.
The big trick to using LSA is to get plenty of it on the operating parts - like those inside the upper and lower receivers - and very light doses in other places - like the bore and chamber, inside the carrier key, inside the bolt and on the firing pin and the magazine spring and none at all on your ammo or on the inside of your magazine.
Normally, you want your rifle spitting clean inside and out before you apply LSA. So do a real good job after every fire mission.
Too busy fighting? OK, then postpone the cleaning BUT lube all the working parts with LSA frequently and generously.
Inside Parts Upper Receiver
Inside Parts Lower Receiver
Action Spring Guide
Inside Lower Receiver Extension
Be Sure You Coat Locking Lugs
|Barrel Bore . . . Start At Receiver|
"These Parts Get Lubed Lightly.
Page 8 TROPIC LIGHTNING NEWS November 13, 1967
|WELL KNOWN ENTERTAINER - Martha Raye (left) and two members of her troupe perform at the the 25th Inf. Div's Lightning Bowl. More than 4,000 enthusiastic troopers were on hand to watch the outdoor presentation of "Hello Dolly." (Photo by SP4 George Pullen)|
Arty Aids 3 Needy Children
Three young Vietnamese school children who were too poor to continue their education beyond high school have now been given the opportunity to go to college through contributions donated by members of H&S Btry, 6th Bn, 77th Arty.
The 25th Inf Div unit gathered together the equivalent of 18,960 Vietnamese piasters, enough to provide the children with three scholarships to study English, a must for those planning to attend college.
At a recent ceremony at Than Khiet High School, a private school in Trang Bang, Reverend Nguyen Thanh Khiet, director of the school, said, "The Army and the people of the United States not only bring peace to our country, they more than support our poor people. We dare say these three students will never forget the kindness you have shown."
Receiving the scholarships were Le Van Cong, Vo Thi Xa and Le Thi Lam. One child is an orphan, one has no father, and one's father is sick and disabled.
Attending the ceremony were CPT Nghiep, chief of the Trang Bang District; Thomas Medlock, deputy sector advisor of the Trang Bang District; and CPT Alton D. Morris, 25th Div Arty civil affairs officer.
Kids See Movies
Civil affairs soldiers of the 25th Inf Div's 2nd Bde recently started a new health program based on the fact that kids the world over love movies.
Making use of projector teams from the 246th Psychological Operations Co at Bien Hoa, the brigade combines Medical Civil Action Programs (MEDCAPS) with movies to teach the basics of good health and sanitation.
A typical program began recently when a MEDCAP team from the 2nd Bn, 27th Inf "Wolfhounds," entered the hamlet of Tan Hoa 32 kms northwest of Saigon.
While the doctor and two Vietnamese nurses administered pills, shots and advice to the townspeople, the projector team was busy setting up their equipment in the village hall.
By the time the show of animated Vietnamese language cartoons was ready to roll the hall was so crowded that children had to be turned away.
Though they were promised a second showing, many of them hung in windows and doorways to watch.
"They didn't want to miss a minute of it," said team sergeant SSG Eugene I,eighton,of Nunda, S.D. "Some of then even stayed to see it twice."
School Rebuilt By Artillerymen
DAU TIENG - Three members of the Civil Affairs Section of the 2nd Bn, 77th Arty, 3rd Bde, 25th Inf Div, have recently completed reconstructing and redecorating a Vietnamese nursery and adjoining playground in the village of Dau Tieng, in Tay Ninh Province.
What once was a dirty, rundown building is now an attractive clean school for approximately 70 children.
Benches, tables, blackboards, desks and chairs now allow many more children to attend school. All these items were built by the men of the Civil Affairs Section under guidance of 1LT Daniel R. Lane from Pocatello, Idaho.
"I really feel honored to have been part of this project and to have helped these people help themselves," commented Lane.
Beside the school a new playground, complete with swings, teeter-totters, and lawn swings, give the children a safe and enjoyable yard to play in. The playground also has several flower gardens planted by Mr. Phan Van Sang, the school master.
PFC David E. York commented, "There is nothing that can compare to the shine in the kids eyes when we come to see them. There's nothing like a kid climbing on you to let you know you're loved and what you've done is appreciated."
Perfect Record For Slick Pilots
WO John McGrady of Lorain, Ohio, is a "Slick" pilot in the true sense of the word; for he has flown US-1D troop carrying helicopters for ten months straight in Vietnam without an incident.
McGrady is a member of the 187th Aslt Hel Co, located at Tay Ninh, and has always managed to complete the mission and return without a scratch on his aircraft. However, he lost his record while on a recent operation with the 25th Inf Div in the HoBo Woods 56 kms northwest of Saigon.
"I was on short final with the flight," says McGrady, "when a round came through my windshield and out through the top of the helicopter."
No one was injured and the aircraft continued its mission.
DAU TIENG - Averaging 18 hours a day, the men of the 2nd Bn, 34th Armor's Commo Plt laid over 24 kms of wire since the arrival of the unit at the 25th Div's base camp in Tay Ninh.
In the establishment of any base camp, hard work is the rule of the day for all personnel. But of all the sections, communications is easily the hardest pressed. Ten days after the arrival of the battalion at the new base camp, the Commo Plt had achieved and maintained an adequate communications network. This included the wiring of all permanent buildings, the creation of a Tactical Operations Center, and the installation of a guard-bunker phone line.
"To achieve and maintain effective communications is essential to the accomplishment of any mission," said CPT Donald Cass, communications officer.
Joe Carey, 25th Admin. Co., for sharing this issue,
Kirk Ramsey, 2nd Bn., 14th Inf. for creating this page.
This page last modified 08-10-2005
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