Guest Book Archives
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SGT Richard Thomas Blake
I am contacting you regarding your website on veterans from the Vietnam War. The reason why I am contacting you is because of my grandfather who was killed in action in July of 1969. The only information I have on him are as follows:
SGT Richard Thomas Blake
1st Bn, 8th Infantry,
4th Infantry Division
His tour began in September of 1968 and ended July 1969 at the Binh Dinh Province, South Vietnam. Basically, I wanted to know if other gentleman on your website may have served with him in the same company during that time period. I have so many questions. I was wondering if you knew of any websites that could help me out in obtaining any information on what operations C/1/8 would have encountered while he was on tour.
Thank you for your time,
From his obituary in a Sikeston, Mo newspaper clipping: Malden, MO.He died on July 29, 1969 at the age of 21 from a grenade explosion.
Email me at the Swamp_Fox address below and I will forward it him.
Posted 7 February 2014
brought this link to my attention. It struck a chord with me... It is the answer to the question, "When were you in Vietnam?" The answer given by Robert Clark of C/2/60th was, "I Was There Last Night ..." Click the link and read the full answer.
Does anyone know the whereabouts of Captain Jones who was Charlie CO from May to October, 1967? Captain Esse took over after him. Doug Leatherman of Grand Rapids Michigan and I were RTO's for both Captains. I was there from 5-10-67 to 1-31-68 at Pleiku and Dak To, wounded with B-40 rocket and spent a year at Fitzsmion Hospital in Denver.
Email me at the Swamp_Fox address below and I will forward it to John.
Posted 15 August 2010
We will never forget you Ed...Homer
SP/4 Pat Carnes
C/1/8, 4th Infantry Division
My story starts the latter part of August 1967 at the last part of the monsoon season. The other new replacements and I were loaded down with all our equipment and put on a chopper to go out to the company, which was being resupplied. I was the last on the chopper and had to sit on the edge by the open door. (I’m afraid of heights!) The chopper took off and I’m doing fine till it banked to the left (my side). I’m terrified and I think my butt was trying to bite the floor to hold on. The door gunner tapped me on the shoulder and said, “Don’t worry. You’re not going to fall out. You probably couldn’t even jump out, if you wanted to.” I assured him I didn’t want to jump.
We landed in a valley and resupplied the company. The valley floor had elephant grass about chest high. Some of the old guys told me they had just killed a 14 foot King Cobra before we got there. They showed us a huge pile of snake to prove it. The resupply chopper took longer than expected, so the CO decided to go back to a place the company had stayed a week or so before. The fox holes were already dug and fields of fire cut. We put up our hooch, ate, and then it was dark.
The old guys told me I could have first watch, since they would probably be awake most of my watch. I’m sitting there, can’t see two feet in front of me, the wind is blowing a little, rattling the bamboo, making it sound like a herd of elephants coming up the hill. One of the old guys crawls out of the hooch and tells me he has to take a crap. “Don’t’ shoot me.” I say OK and he goes ten to fifteen feet out in front of the foxhole. He started cussing and came up and jumped in the foxhole. (It was half full of water.) I kept asking him, “What’s the matter.” Finally he said, “I crapped all on my pants and I’m washing it off in the water.” He put his wet pants back on, then crawled back in the hooch and went to sleep.
I sat there thinking for a few minutes, then said, “Lord, you might as well let me go on and die now, because there is no way I can survive a year going through the kinds of things I have today.” Putting a rucksack on, that weighed over half my weight, seeing a snake twice my size, living in terror on every chopper flight and to top it all off, this night.
Well I did survive and looking back on it, the first day in the field is funny now, but I promise you, over forty-one years ago it was not. I made myself a promise that day. I said, “You will never be the last one on a chopper again!” and I wasn’t.
SP/4 Pat Carnes
C/1/8, 4th Infantry Division
August 1967 – June 1968
3/4th CAV, 25th Division
June 1968 – August 1968
Homer … I was with the C/1/8 Nov 69 - Feb or Mar 70, then went to 3/8 and that company broke up, so I went to S&T Company and worked on a gun truck until Nov 70. Saw just a little of your site tonight, going to look better tomorrow. I believe I saw you over there. In Dec 69 while on a hump, working off Fire Base Hard Times, I found a sack in a hut with two diamonds inside and a lot of NVA Doctor’s medical records. I turned them in to our Captain. Your story made me remember this. Thank you.
E4 (clay more)
Would like to hear from any one whom may remember me….
I have Arty's Email address on file...contact me and I will forward your email to him.
Posted 7 DEC 2007
Thank you for the development of this site which enables those of us who served in Vietnam to make contact with those that we were with.
I was in C 1/8 from March 1969 to Feb. 1970 and came in country when the Company was on Hill 467. I have some very vivid memories of those two days that I spent on that firebase. I completed my tour in 1970 and returned to civilian life. I am now retired and four years ago went back to Viet Nam on a two week visit. I spent the first week in the Saigon area, an area that I previously had not experienced, with the second week in the Central Highlands. The trip was very good for my soul and I was very surprised at the attitude of the Vietnamese toward Americans and former troops. We met with some NVA Officers and were able to ask them any questions we wished. That was a very insightful exchange for me.
I am interested in contacting anyone who served in Charlie Co. 1/8 during the period of time that I was in country.
I have Dennis's Email address on file...contact me and I will forward your email to him.
Posted 15 AUG 2007
I visited your site and its great. I was an 11Bravo in C Co. 1-8. I came in country in May of 67 and went to B Co., got malaria in August and spent over a month in Cam Rahn Bay Hospital. When I came back I was put in C Co. and was there until DEROS in May 68. We were working West of Ban Me Thout when the thing erupted at Dak To. They convoyed us to a firebase somewhere a little south of Dak To and we were CA'd into an area south of Ben Het and West of the air strip. A couple of companies from the ( I think) 3/8th were to our East a couple of klicks in a major fight to keep a hill. The remainder of my tour was spent mostly between Hill 875 and northwest of Ben Het along the border to directly North of the airstrip. I spent many a night on 3 man OP's or 5 man ambushes. I really would like to know exactly how much our rucksacks weighed after a resupply. I left the field to DEROS from FB-29. I never knew the names or numbers of most of the FB's until the internet came along. I can find some areas where events happened on maps on some of the websites. It would be great to have aerial photos of the entire area. It sounds as if the unit kept the same AO. I'm sure we humped some of the same trails and gazed at the night sky from the same hilltops.
Hear is a vivid memory of mine. I had been with B Co. about two weeks and we had been doing perimeter guard at a place called "Jackson Hole". It was a Brigade Command Post somewhere southwest of Pleiku (I think). We had run patrols, OP's, and ambushes from there because of the great number of green replacements in the Co. of which I was one. When it came time to go to the boonies we humped out of there in platoon size units to the west toward a high ridgeline running North/South. A few days before we left I was made the M-79 guy. I had fired 1 round from an M-79 and that was about 3 months prior in AIT. I wasn't familiar with the weapon. We had started up the side of that ridge, everyone was bent over with the weight of the rucks. I was bent over, M-79 resting on an ammo pouch on my web gear, my forearm was resting on the top of the stock. Somehow the lock for the trigger guard was tripped and the guard slid to the side. My forearm resting on top of the stock slid the safe to "OFF" and BLOOP! I watched that round bury itself in the soft dirt at my feet, WOW- what a rush!!! I'm still thanking the guy who thought of the self arming thing for those rounds. That was the first time I was to hear the words WHO FIRED THAT ROUND !?! So much for noise discipline. There were about 30 other guys not happy with me right then. We traveled farther up the side of the ridge and about half way up we set up for the night. It was a small, tight perimeter, pitch black, monsoon rain , scared as hell -- first night in the bush.
In the morning we ate breakfast and slowly made our way up the top of the ridge getting there in the late morning. At the top there was a trail following the ridge so we sat up a perimeter dissecting it to eat our lunch. One M-60 on the North the other on the South. The perimeter is maybe 15 yards across. Had just started to heat some C's when the "gun" on the South end opens up with a really long burst of maybe 50-75 rounds. Hit the dirt a laid there and waited. I heard some low sounds coming from our guys over there and then my squad leader "Hurst" comes crawling over to me. "Mac, come with me!", so we go to where the M-60 is setting on the trail. He tells me that he and I are going to go down the trail and check out a body that is laying about 25 yds away. I told him I'd really like to have an M-16 in my hands when we did this, in fact I got a little adamant about it. So someone hands me a "buckshot round" for the M-79. That round wasn't very deadly looking and I'd only shot two rounds from an M79 and one of them was the day before that went into the dirt at my feet, but I loaded it and we went down the trail, Hurst first , me after on the other side. I wasn't prepared for what I was about to see. Hurst worked his way up to the body and threw back the AK-47, he was dead. Hurst worked his way around a little bend in the trail and just a few yards more there were three more NVA, all dead. There was body matter sprayed everywhere. The gunner had killed all four with that burst. We policed up their weapons and equipment and took it back to up the trail. They were traveling with very little, only about 90 rounds apiece with a few Chicoms and some water. It was said that they must have been a recon team. I wouldn't eat much for a few days but I learned a valuable lesson about growing complacent and bunching up on the trail. The saying "lets have 5 meters or one round will get you all" made a lot of sense. So my first few days in the boonies with B-1-8 were a real eye opener for this 19 yr. old.
I'd like to be in touch with that squad leader Hurst. He was from Alabama and one of the originals that went over by boat from Ft. Lewis. He only had a few months to go when I arrived. He taught me a lot. Its hard to believe that it will be 39 years in a few months since that all that happened. I had a few good experiences like being stalked by a tiger on a 3 man night LP and being targeted by our own aircraft with only a few seconds before from having F-4s drop their ordinance on us because a FAC pilot mistook us for NVA and marked us with a rocket. Friendly Fire- is there such a thing? I chuckle now but when that jet was making that big circle to get into position to make his run I was looking at some worried faces. The sound of a fighter screaming in on a run is a special sound isn't it? It gives goose bumps just thinking of it. One of the things that was most unnerving to me was being mortared while being on the move. Hearing the round leave the tube and wondering if it was" the one". A hole just a few inches deep can be quite a comfort when HE is headed your way.
Posted 24 FEB 2006
I was a shake-n-bake with 2nd platoon, Charlie Co, 1/8th on Hill 467 early March 69. My LT was Robert Hahn from Chicago, IL. I remember C Co. going down into the valley and making contact with a NVA regiment. 2nd platoon was ordered to stay in the valley for a night and set up an ambush while the remainder of the company headed back to the top of the mountain. I remember being on the Ho Chi Minh Trail and finding a Russian truck and then being chased by the NVA for the entire next day. Late in the afternoon, I remember hearing a resupply chopper pilot telling us to hurry because there was an enemy force on our tail. We made it to the top and rejoined the other companies on the hill and that night in Charlie Co sector, we were probed and eventually attacked. The next day, we found approximately 1/2 dozen bodies and a whole lot of weapons. The bodies were brought in and stacked outside our perimeter and then the weapons were blown up and burnt. I remember one night where "Snoopy" was called in and it firing orange lines as it circled its target. You could hear the engines of vehicles down in the valley but after "Snoopy" circled, what was heard was numerous explosions. In the morning, you could still see smoke rising in the valley. I also remember coming back from an ambush one morning and sitting under a large tree watching two 81 MM mortar squads on a fire mission. They were having a contest to see how fast they could load and fire the tubes. As I watched, I saw a mortar man hang a mortar at the muzzle of the tube and there was still a round in the tube. As it went off, it hit the mortar at the end of the muzzle and flew maybe 50 feet vertically and came back down and exploded between the two pits. I believe the crewmen were hit by shrapnel in the groin and also believe some fingers were lost. Dust offs were called in and the wounded were evacuated. Later, I went over to look at the site and remember seeing the end of the tube had numerous chips taken out of the metal. I also remember being on the first sortie of choppers that flew the companies off that hill. I believe we landed at a fire base called Black Hawk. The crew shut down the bird after we landed and we all got out and looked as the crew released the shrouds that covered the tail rotor drive shaft. There was a 1" hole halfway up the tail rotor housing and it just missed the tail shaft and that bird was taken out of action. I remember there were 17 choppers involved in air lifting all the companies off that hill and 11 were hit. I have a scrapbook filled with many pictures and items I'd like to show you. I live in SE Pennsylvania and would like to meet and talk with you. My call signs were 78TANGO and 21XRAY. Welcome Home Brother.
Posted 6 FEB 2006
son of Lt. Callan. See Task Force Alpha, Flashback...5 MAR 1969 for the story. His father and I were friends in Vietnam. Lt. Callan never made it home to see his son George grow up, but I can state for a fact, that he has a son he can be very proud of, who loves and remembers him sincerely. Lt. Callan is one of those fine young men whose memory still causes tears to well up when I think of him.
If you knew Lt. Callan of C/1/8, his son would love to hear from you. Contact him through my email address at bottom of page.
Dear Mr. Steedly,
Hello again. I want to thank you for the time that you spent discussing your service and the interaction you had with my father in early 1969. I have spent the large majority of my life wondering about Vietnam and thanks to the 4th ID website, and to men like you, I have been able to learn a great deal about my father and the place where he died. I have been educated about the Central Highlands, Plei Trap, and triple canopy growth that made it dark enough to need a flashlight during the day. I am still reading through your website and it has just demanded my attention like no other. The daily responsibilities and challenges faced by combat infantrymen during Vietnam serve to inspire me whenever I feel that my own life is becoming difficult. The fact that my father died there serving his country, and attempting to recover the M60 that went down when the point man was hit, always reminds me that I owe my best to whatever I am facing in my life. If you know any others who served with my dad and would be willing to talk about it, I would appreciate it. I have a 3 year old daughter who will need to know who her grandfather was and why she never met him. My father's name and info are:
Lt. George A. Callan C/1/8. He was KIA on 03/05/1969. You discuss it in your flashback re Task Force Alpha / Hill 467.
God bless you Homer. You have helped me to know more about my dad and his last months of life. I cannot thank you enough for sharing your time and memories.
Email me at the address at the bottom of the page and I will put you in contact with George.
Posted 31 MAR 2005
Robert H. (Bob) Robbins "ARKIE"
I was with the second platoon of Charlie Company on hill 467. I was also one of the platoon RTO's. I was on the first bird off 467 and was not happy to be on it due to the fact we were not sure if it could get out without being shot down. I will never forget the sound of it coming up to side of the hill (North side I think) at treetop level at full speed trying to avoid detection. After making it to Polei Kleng we took over a water truck at the frustration of the driver.
I was listening on the PRC 25 as you were trying to get off the hill and letting our people know what was going on. At this time we were getting ready to volunteer to try and go back in and try to walk out with you. I am not sure how we thought we could do this and I am glad that we did not need to try.
I went in Country in September 1968 and also arrived on Hill 29 some time in late September. Thanks for cleaning up the hill. By the time I had arrived it was in pretty good shape, only the memories of it almost being over run a few weeks/month earlier. Feel free to add this to your Guestbook. I would like to find any of our Brothers in Arms.
Posted 27 DEC 2004
Sgt Walter Levon Clark
I am trying to locate anyone who served with Sgt Walter Levon Clark C Co,1Bn, 8th Inf, 4th Inf Div. Levon was KIA on 29 OCT 1967 Near Ban Me Thout at a forward support area awaiting transportation back to his unit, which was on a search and destroy mission. His death was the result of friendly fire, some artillery rounds fell short . It would mean a lot to His family if we could learn any more details or contact anyone who knew Him.
Thank You for Serving
Thanks for the Site
I have Sid's Email Address on file...Contact Swamp_fox at earthlink.net
Posted 23 JUN 2006
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