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Phuoc Vinh Attack July 1967 - My Story

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  • Phuoc Vinh Attack July 1967 - My Story

    Miss Siagon wanted some war stories and since there is a bit of information regarding the attack on Phuoc Vinh in July 1967 which I disagree with (the enemy killed stats) what is posted there (see 40 yrs Ago Today thread - posting 783 on page 53).

    My adventure regarding this attack follows:

    PHUOC VINH INDOCTRINATION
    All we did, the first few days at Phuoc Vinh, was to get our basic combat supplies (to include steel pot, flak jacket, and weapons) and go through a few orientations, organized into Platoon assignments, and was shown (walked thru) our defensive perimeter positions and what we should do if we came under attack. At this time we only had one experienced officer, the XO, who was a 1st Lt and one experienced Master Sgt. The first three nights we learned, and was adjusting to, the basic night time sounds of war - a few small arms fire out in the distance - the firing of H & I’s (harass and intermittent - outgoing mortar and artillery rounds). These sounds seemed to go on all night, but I got used to them, knowing they were outgoing rounds.



    MY FOURTH NIGHT AT PHUOC VINH
    It was the monsoon season in Vietnam and rain/mud was our common companion. During the first few nights we would clean up and go to bed in regular army cots like it was normally done back in the world (shorts and T-shirt). About two or three in the morning I heard this very loud explosion that woke me up - “Is that incoming or outgoing”? I dumbly yelled! Next I heard a lot of yelling INCOMING, INCOMING! I proceeded real fast to grab my glasses, steel pot, shower shoes, and flash light and ran to the back tent exit which was right next to my bunk. I knew there was a sandbagged bunker about 20' from the rear exit of our tent. I was about half way to the bunker when a large ROCKET explosion went off real close to me and the concussion of the explosion picked me up and threw me about 10' to the side entrance of the bunker. The concussion had also knocked off my steel pot, glasses, and shower shoes. Man, unbelievably I was ok! I low crawled like hell to the bunker entrance, while still on my belly, about six guys stepped on top of me trying to get into the bunker. Once in the bunker I yelled, “[email protected]%K! JUST LIKE THE MOVIES, ONLY IT’S REAL”! I turned my flashlight on and seen that the Capt (the new D Company Commander, Capt Deblois) was right beside me, and all of the new Platoon Leaders (Lt’s) and Platoon Sgt’s were also in this same bunker, along with the cooks and some Vietnamese mess help (about 6 young ladies). Upon further observation, there was also a young soldier in the bunker starting to make out with one of the Vietnamese girls while the chit was still popping outside the bunker - typical young GI trying to get a piece when and wherever he could. After about five min in this safe bunker, there was this angry dumbfounded face sticking into our safe little bunker entrance. The angry person behind this face was fully combat ready; the angry face was that of our experienced XO (1st Lt), yelling at all our asses to get the hell out of the bunker and collect our men and defend the perimeter positions. We all looked at each other with “STUPID” written on all our foreheads, thinking the same thing - oh yeah, we are the Command Leadership of this brand new Company.

    On the way to gather up all my men I went through the back entrance of our tent and grabbed a steel pot, combat webbing (harness pre-supplied with water, grenades and ammo) and my weapon (M16) – didn’t have time to find a flak jacket or a 2nd pair of glasses.

    Now at this time, we have not yet been issued any radios to communicate with. I’m on the defensive perimeter with what I needed to fight with - but I’m still in my T-shirt and shorts, barefoot, and have no glasses. We were almost ankle deep in mud and the rain was pouring down. In my efforts to count all my men, in order to provide a “heads up” status to the Company Commander, I had to use my RTO as a message runner between me and my Squad leaders and me and the CO. Well I’m standing up trying to get control of things while small arms fire was coming in to our positions. I looked around and seen all these little blobs of mud flying up all around me (and I say to my Platoon Sgt. “WHAT THEY HELL THEY DOING - THROWING ROCKS AT US”! My Platoon Sgt., on his belly in the mud, answered “SIR YOU BETTER GET DOWN - THOSE ARE RIFLE GRENADES”. Hell I didn’t have my glasses on, it was raining like hell, and the mud was so deep it was absorbing the small explosions that rifle grenades make when landing in deep mud. Well you know what I said “AH CHIT!” I hit the mud face down.

    WELCOME TO VIETNAM - PHUOC VINH STYLE
    The local VC’s had just welcomed the new Delta Companies to the 1st Inf. Div. During the attack, there was a lot of green and red traces flying in all directions - different types of explosions going off, USAF fighter strikes along with Army Gun Ships blazing away at Charlie who was attacking our perimeter defenses. Things got quiet in about an hour or so and we stayed at our positions till daylight.

    Come daylight, I went looking for my glasses and CLOTHS. Found my glasses, and steel pot just outside the tent entrance along with half of a single shower shoe (never found the other half or the other matching shower shoe). My Platoon Medic came up to me and noticed that I had been bleeding from the forehead right above my nose between the eyes. He got out his tweezers and pulled out a piece of shrapnel from my forehead. He said “Sir, you qualify for a Purple Heart”. Told him “to shove it - I’ve had worse picking my nose!” SURE WISH I HAD KNOWN WHAT SEN. JOHN KERRY KNEW ABOUT RECEIVING THREE PURPLE HEARTS!

    We didn’t lose anyone in our company that night; however; The short timers hootch, very close to our Company - made of wood with cement floors - took a direct rocket hit and killed about 10 that were scheduled to go home within the next few days.

    The rumors that went around about enemy killed that night was somewhere around 50 VC. Here's the irony - One of the VC was a Lieutenant, and he was the Phouc Vinh local Vietnamese that was hired to work on the base (the base BARBER)! Notice the word WAS.

    I NEVER AGAIN went to sleep in Nam UNLESS I WAS FULLY DRESSED AND COMBAT READY!


    KEN JENSEN
    1st Platoon Leader, Delta Company, 1/28th "BLACK LIONS"
    DO NO HARM
    Last edited by KEN JENSEN; 29 Aug 07, 10:31.
    1st ID, 1/28th '67/'68 Phouc Vinh & Quan Loi
    Skirmishes Bu Dop Dec-67, An My, Thu Duc Feb-68
    Plt. Ldr - CIB, Purple Hearts, Silver Star
    What we write can be considered to be a reflection of our SOUL providing others to know our CHARACTER.

  • #2
    Many thanks Ken, that is the kind of stuff we love to read about around here .
    SPORTS FREAK/ PANZERBLITZ COMMANDER/ CC2 COMMANDER

    Comment


    • #3
      yeah thanks ken ..
      owner of the yahoo group for WW1 ,WW2 and Modern TO&Es
      (Tables of organisation & equipment or Unit of action )

      http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/TOandEs/

      Comment


      • #4
        Very good. That is exactly the kind of post I like to see when possible. Thank you for sharing Ken !!!

        I believe (Not totally sure) the three purple heart thing was a "navy policy only" that Kerry took advantage of, so it would not have helped you

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Miss.Saigon View Post
          Very good. That is exactly the kind of post I like to see when possible. Thank you for sharing Ken !!!


          I believe (Not totally sure) the three purple heart thing was a "navy policy only" that Kerry took advantage of, so it would not have helped you
          GLAD to have you back talking to me Miss Siagon - BUT I DO KNOW YOUR BUSY - you post a lot.

          Chit. NAVY gets all the bennies, including soap in the showers (haha).
          Don't think I would have benefited from more purple hearts either. I officially was awarded two (un-officially turned down two others).

          One of my problems with the Kerry thingie is how much time he spent in the hospital for his three PH awards. Hell I had over 20mths in ARMY hospitals for my two official PH wounds.



          KEN
          DO NO HARM
          Last edited by KEN JENSEN; 29 Aug 07, 16:59. Reason: spelling
          1st ID, 1/28th '67/'68 Phouc Vinh & Quan Loi
          Skirmishes Bu Dop Dec-67, An My, Thu Duc Feb-68
          Plt. Ldr - CIB, Purple Hearts, Silver Star
          What we write can be considered to be a reflection of our SOUL providing others to know our CHARACTER.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by KEN JENSEN View Post
            GLAD to have you back talking to me Miss Siagon - BUT I DO KNOW YOUR BUSY
            Give me a break soldier boy. Even I take time off from my hectic publishing schedule for some down time

            Armor11 has been waiting patiently over in the Terrorism thread for me to come and set off a few IEDs in his VN war arguments

            I officially was awarded two (un-officially turned down two others).
            More stories along with I hope

            One of my problems with the Kerry thingie is how much time he spent in the hospital for his three PH awards.
            The Kerry thing is bothersome. There are so many conflicting stories of his combat performance. It is hard to draw and independent conclusion.

            On the other hand.........

            His wounds did seem to be quite minor. One of the awards was signed by an admiral (zumwalt I believe, but not sure) and who does that happen for? He took advantage of an obscure regulation to get out of Vietnam which it seems few knew about. And he requested transfer to be attache to some big wig in Washington after VN. Now who does that? The last thing your average Popeye the Sailor man is going to do if he can pick his transfer post is pick Washington DC and working for some big cheese. He is going pick some tropical paradise with a night life or a place close to his home.

            No, it doesn't sound right. And since he was willing to sell the sacrifice of my country and my beloved vets for political gain I have no use for the man at all. I think Daffy Duck has the right description of him. DESTHPIKABLE

            Hell I had over 20mths in ARMY hospitals for my two official PH wounds.
            At least Bob Kerry actually got some real wounds in action.



            [/QUOTE]
            Last edited by Miss Saigon; 29 Aug 07, 19:04.

            Comment


            • #7
              sorry folks who ya talking about kerry ?? ...
              owner of the yahoo group for WW1 ,WW2 and Modern TO&Es
              (Tables of organisation & equipment or Unit of action )

              http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/TOandEs/

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by thomas.tmcc View Post
                sorry folks who ya talking about kerry ?? ...
                Tom,

                There is a thread here about John Kerry as he was a big topic of conversation during the election. Democratic Senator John Kerry served with the Navy in Vietnam, some say he served bravely and he did receive some medals for this. He also received 3 purple hearts for superficial wounds and then used an obscure Navy regulation to get transfered to Washington DC to serve as an Attache for an Important Naval figure. He was then granted early discharge to go into Politics and became a leader of the anti war movement.

                The other Kerry was Bob Kerry whom I believe is currently the President of the "New School for Social Research" in New York. The most leftist University in America I believe. This Kerry also ran for president many years ago but didn't get as far as John Kerry. Bob Kerry served as a Navy Seal in Vietnam and won the medal of honor. There is no doubt that Bob Kerry acted courageously but there is contraversy over whether he deserved the Medal of Honor. He probably didn't but was awarded it because the Navy was desperately looking to get some positive press for the Seals, who at the time were over shadowed by the Green Berets in publicity. So he got the award. I hvae read that many Seals didn't think his actions deserved the MoH but they were not upset that he got it because it was recognition for all of them. He too went on to become a member of the anti war movement and prominent political figure.

                So there is a brief outline of the Anti war, political Kerry's.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Miss.Saigon View Post
                  Tom,

                  There is a thread here about John Kerry........
                  Sorry I mentioned him. Sure don't want this thread to get political


                  KEN
                  DO NO HARM
                  1st ID, 1/28th '67/'68 Phouc Vinh & Quan Loi
                  Skirmishes Bu Dop Dec-67, An My, Thu Duc Feb-68
                  Plt. Ldr - CIB, Purple Hearts, Silver Star
                  What we write can be considered to be a reflection of our SOUL providing others to know our CHARACTER.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Miss.Saigon View Post
                    Tom,

                    There is a thread here about John Kerry as he was a big topic of conversation during the election. Democratic Senator John Kerry served with the Navy in Vietnam, some say he served bravely and he did receive some medals for this. He also received 3 purple hearts for superficial wounds and then used an obscure Navy regulation to get transfered to Washington DC to serve as an Attache for an Important Naval figure. He was then granted early discharge to go into Politics and became a leader of the anti war movement.

                    The other Kerry was Bob Kerry whom I believe is currently the President of the "New School for Social Research" in New York. The most leftist University in America I believe. This Kerry also ran for president many years ago but didn't get as far as John Kerry. Bob Kerry served as a Navy Seal in Vietnam and won the medal of honor. There is no doubt that Bob Kerry acted courageously but there is contraversy over whether he deserved the Medal of Honor. He probably didn't but was awarded it because the Navy was desperately looking to get some positive press for the Seals, who at the time were over shadowed by the Green Berets in publicity. So he got the award. I hvae read that many Seals didn't think his actions deserved the MoH but they were not upset that he got it because it was recognition for all of them. He too went on to become a member of the anti war movement and prominent political figure.

                    So there is a brief outline of the Anti war, political Kerry's.
                    thanks M.S. better not talk about him then ! ..
                    owner of the yahoo group for WW1 ,WW2 and Modern TO&Es
                    (Tables of organisation & equipment or Unit of action )

                    http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/TOandEs/

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      [QUOTE=Miss.Saigon;754855]Give me a break soldier boy. Even I take time off from my hectic publishing schedule for some down time /QUOTE

                      hmmm Thought I read your profile and you were a "bean counter"! I'll have to re-read it I guess.

                      [QUOTE=More stories along with I hope /QUOTE


                      Yeah - I'll work on one right now - look for "My Quan Loi Adventure". I have a skeleton story that I have to polish up first.


                      KEN
                      DO NO HARM
                      1st ID, 1/28th '67/'68 Phouc Vinh & Quan Loi
                      Skirmishes Bu Dop Dec-67, An My, Thu Duc Feb-68
                      Plt. Ldr - CIB, Purple Hearts, Silver Star
                      What we write can be considered to be a reflection of our SOUL providing others to know our CHARACTER.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by KEN JENSEN View Post

                        hmmm Thought I read your profile and you were a "bean counter"! I'll have to re-read it I guess.
                        I have been working very hard to kill the bean counting portion of my life and I have almost managed to "terminate it with extreme prejudice". Very soon I think it will have no pulse left.

                        Yeah - I'll work on one right now - look for "My Quan Loi Adventure".
                        I will keep an eye out for it

                        Comment

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