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Retiree Assistance Office (RAO) Bulletin
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The War That Never Ended
JAMES RESTON JR.
who served in the U.S. Army from 1965 to
1968, is a senior scholar at the Woodrow
Wilson International Center. He wrote this
for the Los Angeles Times. Reprinted from
the Omaha World Herald
"There are two Vietnam wars, and
the second is still going, 40 years
after the first ended. The United
States fought the first one from
1959 to 1975 in the jungles,
villages and airspace of Indochina.
The second is the war over how that
war, the first lost war in America's
national history, is remembered."
Here to Continue Reading
something for you to watch on
PBS.Org before Ken Burns "The
Vietnam War" starts on Sunday,
September 17, 2017. I think
you will find it a very moving story
of the soldier comradeship during
the Vietnam War.
Vietnam War, CBS News correspondent
Morton Dean and cameraman Greg Cooke
flew on a harrowing medevac mission
to rescue three wounded infantrymen
from an enemy infested rice paddy.
Dean long wondered what had become
of the medevac crew and the bloodied
men who were airlifted to safety on
that day in 1971. American Medevac
tells the story of their reunion,
more than 40 years later."
Click Here to Watch
Please Note you may have to search
"American Medevac" to play in your
F. Maldonado's Memory
of the June 11, 1967 Quan
Loi Ground Attack
Maldonado, a member of
Co. E 701st Maint. Bn.,
1st infantry Division, was based at Phu Loi in 1967 when he
and a fellow G.I. volunteered to go to Quan Loi to work on
some clean-up projects. He and his friend got more
than they bargained for on the night of June 4, 1967 at Quan
Loi when the camp was attached by a reported 1060 men
of the 4th Battalion, 141 NVA Regiment and a company of
local NVA/VC forces.
(Look for his
memory link just below Johnny Kinder's)
in Vietnam and buried with comrades, one Marine
returned from the dead
The Washington Post
Michael E. Ruane July 8
HALLETTSVILLE, Tex. — Ronald
L. Ridgeway was “killed” in Vietnam on Feb. 25,
The 18-year-old Marine Corps
private first class fell with a bullet to the
shoulder during a savage firefight with the enemy
outside Khe Sanh.
Dozens of Marines, from what
came to be called “the ghost patrol,” perished
At first, Ridgeway was listed
as missing in action. Back home in Texas, his old
school, Sam Houston High, made an announcement over
Click Here to Continue or
Click Here to Download a PDF Version
THE VIETNAM WAR, A New
Film By Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, to Air Fall 2017
"ARLINGTON, VA; DECEMBER
6, 2016 -- THE VIETNAM WAR, a new 10-part, 18-hour
documentary film series directed by Ken Burns and Lynn
Novick, will air in September 2017 on PBS stations
In an immersive narrative, Burns
and Novick tell the epic story of the Vietnam War as it has
never-before been told on film. THE VIETNAM WAR features
testimony from nearly 100 witnesses, including many
Americans who fought in the war and others who opposed it,
as well as Vietnamese combatants and civilians from both the
winning and losing sides (see
clips here). (Be sure to cursor down the page for
extended look videos)
“The Vietnam War was a decade
of agony that took the lives of more than 58,000 Americans,”
Burns said. “Not since the Civil War have we as a country
been so torn apart. There wasn’t an American alive then who
wasn’t affected in some way — from those who fought and
sacrificed in the war, to families of service members and
POWs, to those who protested the war in open conflict with
their government and fellow citizens. More than 40 years
after it ended, we can’t forget Vietnam, and we are still
arguing about why it went wrong, who was to blame and
whether it was all worth it.”
“We are all searching
for some meaning in this terrible tragedy. Ken and I have
tried to shed new light on the human dimensions of the war
by looking at it from the bottom up, the top down and from
all sides,” Novick said. “In addition to dozens of
‘ordinary’ Americans who shared their stories, we
interviewed many ‘ordinary’ Vietnamese soldiers and
non-combatants in the North and South, and we were surprised
to learn that the war remains as painful and unresolved for
them as it is for us.”
Six years in the making, the
series brings the war and the chaotic epoch it encompassed
viscerally to life. Written by Geoffrey C. Ward, produced by
Sarah Botstein, Novick and Burns, it includes rarely seen,
digitally re-mastered archival footage from sources around
the globe, photographs taken by some of the most celebrated
photojournalists of the 20th century, historic television
broadcasts, evocative home movies, revelatory audio
recordings from inside the Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon
administrations and more than 100 iconic musical recordings
by many of the greatest artists of the era."
Click Here to Continue Reading on PBS website
Link to Ken Burns PBS Facebook Page
Larry W. Thomas' 1969 Quan Loi Video
While in Vietnam
SP5 Larry W. Thomas, F Battery 16th Artillery, purchased an 8 mm movie camera from the PX
shortly before leaving country, with the idea he would be able to film
his infant daughter when he arrived home. Larry said he had the camera
for only a few days in Vietnam. In the remaining days he had at Quan Loi
in 1969 Larry made just this one video of Quan Loi
Base Camp and F Battery 16th Artillery with the idea he would be able to
show it to his family when he arrived home. We are lucky
Larry kept the film and years later had it digitized and now
shares a copy with us.
Larry’s video is short, it does give you a good image of Quan
Loi, especially Larry’s 155 mm towed howitzer battery.
Click Here to View
Jim Hoyt served with Bravo
Battery at Song Be from May 1968 to Feb 1969. Like
many of us, he purchased a camera a starting snapping shots
around the Bravo Battery Area. He had to learn some
new tasks to get his photos to us, but he did a great job in
mastering the art of scanning, etc.
six separate galleries for ease of viewing, Jim did his best
to caption the 127 photos he agreed to share with us.
His photos are a great addition the website and to the
history of Bravo Battery. Many thanks for sharing your
War Helicopter Pilot to Receive Medal of Honor
June 22, 2016 — President Barack Obama will award the
Medal of Honor in a July 18 White House ceremony to a daring
UH-1D Huey helicopter pilot who displayed extraordinary
heroism during the Vietnam War.
Army Lt. Col. Charles Kettles is credited with saving some
44 lives on May 15, 1967, while serving as a helicopter
commander in the 176th Aviation Company, 14th Combat
Aviation Battalion, Americal Division, near Duc Pho in
Vietnam's central highlands.
Early that morning, his
platoon had dropped about 80 soldiers in a river valley, but
the troops were ambushed and surrounded very quickly.
Kettles and his fellow pilots made several trips back and
forth, bringing reinforcements and evacuating the wounded,
but by afternoon, it was clear that the situation was
hopeless. Only 44 troops remained, facing what Kettles
estimates was a battalion-sized force.
Click Here to Read Entire News Release
Read White House News Release
Are There So Many Copies of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall?
Source: The Atlantic -
City Lab by KRISTON CAPPS 2-23-16
On Friday, the Army posted
a solicitation for a replica of the Vietnam Veterans
Memorial Wall. The National Training Center at Fort Irwin,
California, needs a memorial—something just like the famous
wall designed by Maya Lin—from March 16 to March 20. The
bidding period ends on February 29.
Fort Irwin isn’t
looking for a full-scale replica: This one should not be
larger than 250 feet in length, or half the size of the
(national) Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall on the National
Mall. The replica will nevertheless bear all 58,300-plus
names of veterans lost or missing in the war. For all
Click Here to Continue (PDF File)
OWENSBORO, Ky. (AP) — Snow
fell outside the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 696 as its
members held their monthly meeting Feb. 9, 2016.
Although attendance was down, most of those present were
Vietnam veterans receiving some percentage of disability
benefits from their exposure to Agent Orange — a herbicide
sprayed by the United States military during the Vietnam War
from 1961 to 1971.
Among them were Billy
Milan, Lou Drawdy and Terry Stinson.
They were like thousands of other Vietnam vets who returned
home unaware that they had been exposed to the same toxic
dioxin that was meant to combat their enemies — the Viet
Cong guerrillas and the North Vietnamese Army, known as
"Charlie" to U.S. forces.
Now, decades later...
Click Here to Continue (PDF File)
Click Here For More Agent Orange Information
call for more study of Agent Orange's effects on Vietnam
veterans and their kids
By Mike Hixenbaugh, The
and Charles Ornstein, ProPublica
More than two decades of studying Agent
Orange exposure hasn’t produced a solid understanding of how the toxic
herbicide has harmed Vietnam War veterans and possibly their children, according to a report released Thursday.
Additional research is long overdue, the report
said,. . .
Click Here to Continue
Hear of WACR Radio Blackhorse Quan Loi?
In the Spring of 1970 Quan Loi,
Vietnam, got its very own radio station. It was hard to
believe! Before its arrival the only receivable
stations were Vietnamese. It was a joy to listen to "The
Quan Loi Kid" or "Lucky Fritz" playing American popular music.
They, via WACR Radio Blackhorse, brought a piece of Home to Quan
On May 20, 1970, John Wavra,
then Alpha Battery Clerk, taped over three hours, from 7:30 to
10:30 p.m. at the EM Club on a reel to reel tape recorder.
An 8 plus minute sample of that recording has been available on
the website for several years. Now you can listen to the
entire 3 hour plus recording in its entirety.
In addition you can also now
listen to over 1 1/2 hours of a recording from May 1, 1970 made
by then CW2 Brian Russ, a Cobra Pilot with Blue Max at Quan Loi
(C Btry 2/20 ARA).
A long over-due thank you is
given to all those soldiers who made it all possible.
Click Here to Listen
Years Ago - 6/27th Artillery
2 Nov 1965 - The Gordon arrives at Vung Tau
3 Nov 1965 - The battalion disembarks at Vung
Tau and is flown to Bien Hoa Air Base and staging area
4 Nov 1965 - The Dick Lykes with battalion
equipment arrives in Saigon harbor
10 Nov 1965 - A and Service batteries deployed to
Widow's Village, east of Bien Hoa
On or about 10 Nov 1965 - First Fire Mission in
19 Nov 1965 - B, C, HQ batteries deployed to Phuoc
9 Dec 1965 - Alpha and Service Batteries relocate to
north side of Bien Hoa Air Base
24 Dec 1965 - General Harold K. Johnson, Army Chief
of Staff, visits C Battery at Phuoc Vinh
Here to Learn of Other 50th Anniversary Milestone
A Tribute to Vietnam Veterans Featuring the Voice of
Mr. Sam Elliott
The United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration
Published on Jul 20,
Featuring the voice of renowned
actor Mr. Sam Elliott, this video is a tribute to the 7.2 million living
and the 9 million families of all who served from Nov. 1, 1975 to May 15,
1975. Thank you for your service and sacrifice!
By William E. (Bill) Patterson
new book recently came my way that I think many of
you who served in Vietnam will enjoy.
“Vietnam Convoy Trucker”,
written by William E. (Bill) Patterson, who served
in Vietnam with the 319th
Transportation Company, an activated Army Reserve
Unit from Augusta, GA from 1968 to 1969, is a lively
and entertaining memoir of his time there.
In short it is a “good
Bill’s book provides you the opportunity to
sit down with a Vietnam Comrade and learn through a
series of his memories what it was like to be a
convoy driver of a 5-ton cargo truck, Number 36,
during a one year . . .
Here to Continue
Information on the Saga of the "Quan Loi Queen"
information on the saga of the "Quan Loi
Queen" has become available thanks to MSGT
Robert Aston (U. S. Air Force, Ret.).
Robert flew into Quan Loi on the support
aircraft and was tasked with helping to
start the Queen via its "prop wash" at Quan
Loi. It was a perilous job as you will
read. Robert has sent an article that
appeared in the Air Force Base newspaper in
Taiwan and photos of the "Queen" in the wash
rack at Tan San Nhut AFB, South Vietnam.
Many thanks to Robert and his son, Bob, for
sending this new "Quan Loi Queen"
July 1967 VC Raid On Quan Loi
Kinder was sent to Quan Loi, at what turned out to
be a very inappropriate date and time. He was
a mechanic with BN
Maintenance, HHC 1st Engr Bn, 1st Inf Div. and he was
sent to Quan Loi to adjust a transmission on an
Allis Chalmers HD16 Bulldozer. It turned out
to be a very exciting trip to say the least.
Many thanks to Johnny for sharing his eyewitness
memory of that night.
Click Here to Read it.
If you were there at
Quan Loi that night and would like to share your
memory of that Ground Attack please
New Cannon Ear
Newsletter of the 6/27th Artillery Vietnam & Quan
Loi Dot Org
In an attempt to
keep you informed when new content is added to the
website and to spotlight content you may have missed
from the over 4000 pages on the site, it had been
decided to publish an email newsletter at least
quarterly if not sooner. If we had a current
email address for you we added it to the mailing
list and you should have received the first issue
already. Thanks to all of you for the good
comments many of you have sent.
have not received the latest issue and would like to
view it and/or be added to the mailing list so you
will receive free future issues in your email box
New Video of the
Club & Swimming Pool
asked those of you who served at Quan Loi, South
Vietnam to name one good memory of the
place - perhaps it would be the Frenchmen's Swimming
Pool and Clubhouse Area. It was a unique place in
Quan Loii let alone the entire country of South
Vietnam and it was a very good memory.
Frenchmen's Area is long gone now, removed by the
new government of a united Vietnam some years after
reunification, but the memory is preserved in GI's
photos and in one case the only known film of the
place. Come back with us now and revisit that memory
in new video.
Legacy of Honor
History of the 6/27th
Artillery 1917 - 1967"
"searchable" copy of this exceptional history of
the 6th Battalion, 27th Artillery is now
available for download in PDF format.
It has long been a goal to re-type SP4
Paul Frederick's entire History as a searchable
Well, it was a long process that was not
without its benefits, in that it, at last forced
me to read the entire document while typing it
from the first to the last word.
I have tried to remain as faithful to the
original document with this copy, correcting
only minor errors where discovered.
Due to the differences used by SP4
Frederick’s manual typewriter page layout and
today’s computer edition there may be some
slight differences in page numbering.
In this edition footnotes have been
numbered consecutively rather than by section.
SP4 Paul R. Frederick’s History of the 6/27th
Artillery is a remarkable document, especially
when you consider the conditions of where and
when it was researched and written – on the
battlefield per se – Phuoc Vinh, Vietnam in 1966
Regrettably SP4 Frederick’s history ends
in the middle of 1967.
The 6/27th Artillery remained
in Vietnam for another four years serving in
No history of these remaining years has
yet to come to light.
Perhaps one day one will.
Vietnam in the News
Bill Moyers Interviews Karl Marlentes - Watch it
Moyers Interviewed Karl Marlentes,
author of "Matterhorn" a 2010 best
selling novel of the Vietnam War and
"What It Is Like To Go To War
?" a non-fiction 2011 work about
modern veteran life upon return to the civilian world, recently on
PBS show, Bill Moyer's & Company. It is an interview
Click Here to watch it now.
How Many Vietnam Veterans Are Still Alive?
Take a Number. How Many Vietnam Veterans Are
Still Alive? By ANDREW GELMAN. Published: March 25, 2013 in the
New York Times. The approximate percentage of Vietnam-era
veterans who are still alive in 2013 is 75.
Here is a copy of the article just in case you can not get it
from NewYorkTimes.com. Please note - this corrects the story "Vietnam
Vets Take Notice - Here Are Some Interesting Statistics..."
posted earlier and
Nice to learn there are more of us still alive than we thought
before. Glad you are one of them!
Vietnam POW Remembers Vietnam Forty Years Later
"Forty years ago on March 13, my fellow prisoners
of war in North Vietnam and I, dressed in cheap civilian clothes
that had been provided to the 108 of us for the occasion, boarded
buses for Gia Lam airport on the outskirts of Hanoi. A
Big green American C-141 airlifter was waiting there to fly us to
Clark Air Force Base n the Philippines."
Click here to read the article.
Published in The Wall Street Journal, March 14,
40 Years, the Complete Pentagon Papers
"It may be a first in the annals of government
secrecy: Declassifying documents to mark the anniversary of their
leak to the press. But that is what will happen Monday, when the
federal government plans to finally release the secret government
study of the Vietnam War known as the Pentagon Papers 40 years after
it was first published by The New York Times.
Daniel Ellsberg, the military analyst who leaked the Pentagon
Papers, said the report should not have been secret even in 1971.
At first blush, it sounds like the release of one of the worst-kept
secrets in history..."
Read the complete story at
The New York Times.com
Read the complete Pentagon Papers at
The National Archives
New Vietnam Documents & History Now OnlineAs the years go by more and more previously
"secret" or "restricted" documents are being made available.
As we become aware of them we will make them available to you.
Show Doubts on ’64 Vietnam Crisis
By ELISABETH BUMILLER
WASHINGTON — In an echo of the debates over the
discredited intelligence that helped make the case for the war in
Iraq, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Wednesday released
more than 1,100 pages of previously classified Vietnam-era
transcripts that show senators of the time sharply questioning
whether they had been deceived by the White House and the Pentagon
over the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin incident.
Click Here to download Copies in PDF File
Vietnam: A Television History
was a landmark documentary series
produced by WGBH. This collection
contains most of the materials
gathered and created for the 1983
series, as well as additional
Vietnam-related materials from the
WGBH archive. Vietnam: A Television
History was one of the last WGBH
series produced entirely on film.
Starting in 2008, materials were
reconstructed, transferred, and
digitized for preservation and
Visit the WGBH Open Vault
Online Roster Reminder
Over 200 visitors have listed there names and
contact information in the online roster. It is a great way to
allow old friends to find you after these many years. The
Roster has a secure entry and requires a username and password which
you receive when you submit your own information for inclusion.
We invite you to join - like everything on this site it is
Once your name is listed you will be advised via
email when new listings are added. With that in mind, several
of you have changed your email addresses and not advised us of the
change. When time permits, would you please
email us if you desire to continue to receive the notices.
Historic Quan Loi Vietnam Videos
Added to Website
1966 Michael Chalifoux, assigned to the 1st Infantry Division, was
only in Quan Loi for a month when his aunt in Pennsylvania
sent him a Super-8 movie camera. Over the next 7+ months Mike
shot film in and around Quan Loi, including the Frenchmen's Swimming
Pool, the airstrip with all types of aircraft, the nearby Montangard
Village, and An Loc to list just a few. His film shows Quan
Loi (L Z Andy) in its early days as an airstrip.
The 40+ minutes of film was copied to DVD. For ease of viewing
on the website the video was edited into six smaller videos.
Mike was interviewed during a Skype call and his comments were added
to the videos. All six videos were uploaded to youtube.com and
then embedded on pages on the website. You can view them all
clicking here. Thank you Mike for sharing your film with
Saga of the Quan Loi Queen
Chances are, if you were at Quan Loi on November
17-18, 1969, and you had acamera, you took photos of a C-130 that
was hit by a rocket on the Quan Loi Airstrip. I
took several photos as did Jan Maclaga, Dennis Camp, Glen Russell
and Jim McLain of that damaged aircraft. I'm sure there are
many more squirreled away in closets and attics of Quan Loi
Veterans. That battered C-130 was a "curiosity" of the
war. All of us knew that the plane was severely damaged from that
rocket and it would remain on the side of the airstrip for several
months until a crew was finally sent in with a new wing and other
parts to repair her. I doubt that any of us knew that the
twenty-one year old USAF Loadmaster of the Queen, Norm Thomas, was
killed that day from rocket shrapnel. It is time we honor his
All of us at Quan Loi relied on the crews of the C-130s, C-7A
Caribous and choppers who flew in mail, supplies and provided us
safe transportation. Quan Loi would have been a whole lot
worse without them. Thanks to the pilot of the Quan Loi Queen
that November day, Lou Hari, we can now learn the complete story of
that sad incident and what eventually happened to the Quan Loi
Queen. I think you will find it one of the most interesting
stories to be added to the site.
Click Here to read it.
Quan Loi - August 12, 1969 Ground Attack - A Grunt's Perspective
Thomas Mathis was with the A Troop 1/4 Cav on the night of August
12, 1969. His memory of that night brings a new perspective to
what took place when the NVA attacked Quan Loi that night. It
is worth your time.
Click Here to read his account from the new August 12 Start
Were you in Quan Loi on August 12-13, 1969?
If your answer is yes, you don't have to be reminded of the ground
attack that was repulsed that night. Many thanks to former
SSGT Robert W. Smith for providing us with a copy of the August 14,
1969 Stars and Stripes. If you would like to learn about that
night or refresh your memory
click here to read it.
If you have a memory, photos or video of the August 12-13, 1969 Quan
Loi ground attack you would like to share with the site, please drop
Book Published on Quan Loi
I was very pleased to
recently receive a promotional copy of David Bedard's memoir of
Vietnam service in the Artillery Ballistic Meteorology Unit of the
1st Air Cavalry Division from February 1969 to February 1970.
I don't receive many promotional book copies so I was tickled to get
this one, but I was even more pleased to see the title, "I Remember
Quan Loi - Annus Horribilis - The Horrible Year". David had
served his entire Vietnam service tour in one of our "favorite"
places - Quan Loi. His unit was located right next to Alpha
Btry 6/27th Arty.....(Continued)
AND THEN THERE'S THIS:
Vietnam Vets Take Notice -
Here Are Some Interesting Statistics...
In case you haven't been paying attention these past
few decades after you returned from Vietnam, the clock has been
ticking. The following are some statistics that are at once
depressing yet, in a larger sense, should give one a sense of pride.Many Thanks to Don Albers, former Battery Commander, Alpha Battery,
6/27th Artillery Vietnam - 1969 for sending these statistics to us.
Don received them from friends at West Point Academy. We are not
sure who to attribute this original compilation of statistics to (It
can be found at other sites on the web), but whoever you are -
thanks for doing it. Even if they are a little mind-blowing.
"Of the 2,709,918 Americans who served in Vietnam; less than 850,000
are estimated to be alive today, with the youngest American Vietnam
veteran's age approximated to be 54 years old."
So, if you're alive and reading this, how does it feel to be among
the last 1/3rd of all the U.S. Vets who served in Vietnam? We Don't
know about you, but kind of gives me the chills, considering this is
the kind of information we are used to reading about WWII and Korean
Click Here See them All:
Who We Are
This webite was
started in October 2002 by John Wavra with much assistance from
Jim Hynes and Reed McDonald. It has since grown to what you
see on your screen today. It would be but a few pages if not
for all of the comrades who helped. I thank each and every one
of them for their contributions of photos and/or stories, etc.,
which have helped to began to tell the story of the 6/27th Artillery
in Vietnam. It is long past time that credit is given to all
those who helped. See them all at
Who We Are. There is still much to tell. Come, join us!
Add your photo or name to those listed on the Who We Are Page by
sending your memories and stories to me.
This website was produced and is
owned by John A. Wavra
Copyright © 2002 - 2016 by ABattery6/27thArty. All rights
10/16/17 12:02:42 -0500.