Adrian Gravelle's Vietnam 1965-66
Adrian J. Gravelle, originally from Dayton, Ohio, was commissioned from ROTC at the University of Dayton in 1964. In 1964-1965 he was the battery FDC officer in Charlie Battery, 7/8th FA at Fort Bliss, the sister 8-inch battalion of the 6/27th. When the 6/27th was alerted for movement to Vietnam, he and several other officers, and a number of NCOs and enlisted men were transferred to the 27th to fill out the 27th's TO&E. He was one of the six forward observers who shipped with the 6/27th FA aboard the Gordon in October 1965.
His initial few months in Vietnam were spent at Phuoc Vinh as a forward observer and as a liaison officer in the 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division’s Tactical Operations Center in Phuoc Vinh. As an FO, he was radio call sign "rimmed stubs niner-four," he recalls. He participated in several operations out with the Infantry and with the RVN artillery, and then in January 1966 was assigned as XO of Service Battery. This was prior to the battery's move from Bien Hoa Air Base to Long Binh.
He returned to CONUS in August 1966 and went
into the Reserves as a platoon leader in a USAR Transportation Corps
medium truck company in Ohio. After attending law school on
the GI Bill, he re-entered active duty in 1970, and spent 27 years
as a judge advocate (JAG), before retiring from the Army in 1997 as
Please Note: I only have knowledge of the battalion and its personnel from the summer of 1965 until the summer of 1966. My knowledge is limited to events at Fort Bliss just before movement, during the movement on the Gordon to Vietnam and the first ten months there. In this regard, the excellent, well-documented history of the battalion, "A Legacy of Honor - A History of the 6/27th Artillery, 1917 to 1967," by SP4 Paul R. Frederick, dated 15 June 1967, is essential reading for an understanding of that first year. It is very accurate and very detailed and brought back many memories. Moreover, the history presented “the big picture” and filled in many facts that I did not know, did not understand or did not appreciate at the time. In addition, John Anderson’s narrative and photos, Gene Long's photos, Wesley Jefferies' narrative and photos of the ocean voyage of the equipment and John Girardeau's photos and remembrances nicely cover the preparations at Fort Bliss, the sea voyage on the Gordon, and military operations during that first year in country. Adrian Gravelle
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