The poster in the Quan Loi PX read: GIRLS!!!, GIRLS!!!, GIRLS!!!

I was in the middle of my weekly pilgrimage to the Quan Loi PX in June of 1969. I was sort of shopping while at the same time sort of loafing. I was going to purchase some items for myself and the guys in the FDC Section. The food was the same as the week before, but that did not really matter. I needed something to eat after midnight, when I was on shift. I went to the magazine rack and picked up some magazines for the section. I drifted over to the area of the PX where the electronic equipment was located. I was hoping to find a big bargain on a stereo set. Suddenly there it was - the poster: GIRLS!!!, GIRLS!!!, GIRLS!!!, it read.

A USO troupe was going to perform at Quan Loi in two weeks. Part of the show was a chorus line composed of scantily dressed girls, the poster showed. Oh man, this was for me! If the pictures on the poster were any indication, this was one event that I did not want to miss.

I had been in Vietnam since February and had been assigned to the Alpha Battery, 6/27th Artillery FDC Section since day one. I was a bachelor with no "steady" back in the "World". It was hard to believe that in a little over a year's time I had gone from a college senior and social fraternity member with an active social life, to a U.S. Army soldier in Vietnam with a social life similar to a monk. When I saw the poster all the old memories came back.

I began making my plans. The Show was from 1400 to 1600. I was working in FDC from 1800 to 0600 so I could attend during my “off-duty” time. I could grab a couple hours of sleep after my shift at 0600, then go to the location of the Show and get a good spot. I could watch the show and still make it back in time for my next shift at 1400. OKAY!!!!

The day of the show finally arrived. I finished my shift and went to the bunker to get some sleep. My alarm woke me a couple of hours later. I took a quick "cold" shower and put on my last clean uniform. As it was the rainy season, I also took my poncho. I and some other Alpha Battery members took off to the other side of the airfield where USO show was to take place. We got there in time to get a really good spot. I was happy!

About twenty minutes after arriving, the rains came. I put on my poncho which had several holes in it from a mortar attack a month before. In fact it rained twice more. I was pretty wet, but I thought "What the Hell, this is Vietnam.

The time for the show finally arrived. We could see a "Caribou" transport with a “Santa" face painted on its nose start to land. I thought to myself that there really was going to be a USO Show. T hen all Hell broke loose. BAM, BAM, BAM!  I launched myself at the red Quan Loi ground. I landed in a mud hole with two troopers from the 11th Armored Calvary Regiment. BAM, BAM, BAM!  More incoming. I looked up just in time to see the "Caribou", with the "Santa" face painted on its nose, begin a steep climb away from the air strip.

NO USA SHOW TODAY, GUYS!!!!  "Well Crap!” were some of the gentler phrases muttered amongst the waiting soldiers.   
Gary Graham
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