A day remembered

Discussion in 'Vietnam Memories Forum' started by Guest, Mar 22, 2003.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    bartal98
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    (3/17/03 11:45:40 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del All A day remembered
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    April 18,1967......
    Our jet comes to a stop, you can tell it's hot outside cause the plane is getting very hot inside. I think for a minute...If it's this hot inside whats it going to like out there.
    They open the door to that TWA And no-body is very quick to get off. As I get to the door it hits me "OH MY GOD" It's hot, it stinks, and holly shit i'm going to be here for 12 months.
    12 months never seemed that long before then. But all of a sudden it appeared to be for ever.
    This 5 min. span in my life is what I will always remember about Viet-Nam, and will never forget. I have forgotten names of close buddies...hell for awhile I couldn't remember what unit I was in. But that first look, smell and feel of Nam never once has left my mind.

    36years next month my oh my how time does fly.



    berto64
    *VMBB Staff*
    Posts: 854
    (3/19/03 11:11:28 pm)
    Reply | Edit | Del Re: A day remembered
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    Barry,

    Same same, Jan. '69.

    berto

    Endeaver to Persevere<br>

    ruffitt
    *VMBB Staff*
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    (3/20/03 12:22:24 am)
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    ezSupporter
    Re: A day remembered
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    For me it happened on October 12th 1967 when the TWA pilot dropped that big bird from about 24000 feet to the ground in the space of what seemed to be less than 30 seconds. It was like he just pointed it at the ground and let it fall onto the runway at Bien Hoa.

    That was a long time ago and far away - glad it's so------
     
  2. Mithrandir

    Mithrandir Member

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    While re-reading this old post.... I too remember some of what it was like to be "In-Country" for the first time...

    I had left Kansas City on a day that the summer heat was fairly high...at about 90 degrees with 105 humidity.....a normal KC summer day....landed in California and spent two days there before shipping out….

    Upon arriving in VN airspace, we were being delayed for two hours in the air over Ton-San Hut (SP?) because LBJ was coming for a visit….. so the air traffic was held up for him. We finally landed at Ben Hue(SP? Ben Wah).

    like you.... the door opened and the stink hit us just seconds before the raging heat......

    But the stink!!!!

    Having come from the jungles of Panama.... the smell of the jungle was still in my nose...BUT Vietnam had it OWN stink and I was no-where close to a jungle....

    Yet...

    Stepping out of the door to go down the stairs was blinding.. I had no sunglasses....and by the time we reached the bottom of the stairs....our Khakis had wilted....all the starch evaporated in seconds like an ice-cream cone in the sun….

    People standing just yards away were blurred, wavering ghosts in the heat…the polish on our freshly shined shoes melted off like the wax it was….one guy went to shine his shoes by rubbing them on the back of his trousers like he would normally do back in the world…but all he did was to turn his trousers black in the back….

    A sure sign of a NUG in country……

    Rundles & I did better than some of the guys…. Who passed out from the heat within a few minutes…

    We all had to haul our duffels some two hundred yards to get to the clearing station at the airport….

    But still….. the memory is somewhat fresh…


    Out…
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2003

  3. Hope 69/70

    Hope 69/70 Active Member

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    I to Mith was re-reading this post. I have noticed the heat is about the Number 1 torture that is spoke of.

    The plane I was on was going to land but all of a sudden swooped us back up as fast as it was able......Charlie decided to give us a greeting with rockets and his other party items to prevent us from landing.

    I imagine it was getting to the point we were either going to have to land or put on parachutes because of fuel. We were told to leave everything that we had with us where it was and when the door opened, to head for the door in orderly fashion and run like hell......LOL

    When I left the states, I left home from being on leave in one of the biggest snow storms that we had in years. So naturally, I left in my winter greens. Talk about HOT, when I managed to run off that plane, off came my jacket. I didn't care if The General Himself was there, I was trying to get cool. I wasn't sure which was worse at the time, the heat or having to be on the receiving end of Charlies welcome. By the time I left country, I was very sure which one was the worst. - Hope
     
  4. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Administrator Supporting Member

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    I have written about this before---told you about my first go-round in country--landed in DaNang early January 1968--things had gone to hell in a hand basket all over that tiny, divided nation--I too, recall the smell that day, but what was most traumatic for me was to see all those silver containters---those caskets---with different colored tags flapping in the breeze---tags that meant something about the poor bastard therein---the mid-day sun was bright and occasionally the reflected glare off the silver would flash like camera bulbs---. I suppose in every eye that looked and them, and in every brain that registered thoughts about them, the realization that even though this was a civilian plane, we were now in a war zone. I had to spend the night in DaNang and back to the airbase next day, and the next, and the next--three days I recall waiting for the shit to clear up north near the DMZ (DongHa) where I was going to join my battatlion---up there it turned out no shiny metal boxes to flash the sun in your eyes---just the body bags, lots of times, so muddy and heaped up that they looked like trash to be hauled to the dump---the marines at nearby KheSanh and ConThein were taking seemingly endless casualities ---down at the Citidel in Hue and also Quang Tri---what a hell hole---I hope recalling this doesn't have the dreams come galloping back----do you ever forget---have you forgotten or have you just filed in in another drawer? Chief
     
  5. berto64

    berto64 Active Member

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    Naaaaa rooter,

    I don't believe it ever goes away, just that the memories pop up less often as time passes.

    But no, they never go away entirely.

    berto
     
  6. guntutor

    guntutor Guest

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    Mithrandir,

    The names of the places were Tan Son Nhut and Bien Hoa
     
  7. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Administrator Supporting Member

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    Welcome Guns---folks don't come here often to visit---you can tell by the dates that posts are few and far between---perhaps, and just maybe, in our minds, if we don't come to visit here specifically, we won't have those bad thoughts rearing their ugly heads. I hear lately so much talk of the presidential contender speaking of his exploits in country and more than a few times, he is taken to task about his stories--what can I say--good, bad, or ugly, at least he was there. Tell us about your tour Guns---those damn names were so hard to pronounce, let alone spell---compare it to the bad breaks the little kid who has the name like SHISTOSOMASIS verses the other little jasper with the name JONES---nicknames are always popular with young boys so can't you help but wonder who gets the breaks along the way, JONSEY or SHITTY!!! Chief
     
  8. Eagle326

    Eagle326 Guest

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    Actually, it was the second day. Basic at Ft. Lewis with M-14 ('65), Flight training at Ft. Wolters and Ft. Rucker with .45 Colt auto as an "after-thought." And then Braniff brings me to the land of "stinky-hot." Next day I had to do orientation to 'Nam. Afternoon we went to firing range before getting assigned to aircraft. I was handed an M-16.
    "Neat looking weapon Sarg....How the hell does it work"?
    And that second day was what I would experience for 16 months as a Dustoff pilot......How the Hell is this suppose to be working?
     
  9. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Administrator Supporting Member

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    Welcome Eagle---I just wrote a big welcome for you here and after about 10K words, got booted off--oh well, some days chicken, some days feathers. Chief
     
  10. buffalo jump

    buffalo jump Guest

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    Nam was just after my time. I got out in '62, but I want to say thank you to all the guys that served.....THANKS
     
  11. Admin

    Admin Well-Known Member Staff Member

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    BJ and Eagle,

    Thanks for participating at VMBB, we hope you will join in often.

    Regards,
    JD
     
  12. SixTGunr

    SixTGunr New Member

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    Welcome Aboard BJ & Eagle ... :)

    Don't be a stranger round these parts ... ;)

    Stay safe and have a good one!

    Six
     
  13. jerryd

    jerryd Member

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    I remember Jan 2 67 getting off the plane in saigon,the smell the heat was unbelievable,here we are about 150 John Waynes getting on an Army bluebird bus with the page wire around the windows and some grunt sitting on the motor hump,someone asked him if the wire was to keep us from jumping out, he replied NO!! to keep the grenades from coming in!! Talk about a reality check!! It was so quiet on that bus you could have heard an ant fart! First thought i had was what the hell was i doing here,imagine everyone had that one right? Welcome Home!!!! jerryd
     
  14. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Administrator Supporting Member

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    Yup, a reality check---I wrote here on the VNMBB about the first time into DaNang---TET was blazing and the first thing I saw while still on the plane wa those baggage carts with all the silver caskets with little colored tags flapping in the breeze---damn, there was a lot of them---most everyone on the plane stopped talking--alone with their own 'reality checks' probably. The second time over, back into DaNang again---still they were there but not as many as I recall---when we passed by the west end of the airfiled on our way over to Camp Hoover, there was that smell--that terrible, sickening smell like when raw hanburger goes spoiled---. I had smelled it before up north when the Graves Registration people was hauling the bodies out of Khe Sanh---I know it isn't pleasant or even gracious to talk about---when you see it being played out in the theater during a war movie, the smell of popcorn and perfume/aftershave seems a lot more real. Cheif
     
  15. Eagle326

    Eagle326 Guest

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    A Night Remembered-
    It was 1966. I Corps. My crewchief must have let us get low on fuel for the Huey Dustoff because Pilots never make those mistakes. I set her down about 100 meters from a river...the Navy Riverboats would be bringing a fuel bladder the next morning with JP fuel. The 101st set up an outer perimeter for the Huey. Just me, my co-pilot (Rod), and Crewchief/Medic Waymond in the dark in a place we didn't really want to be.
    Now, Waymond was an E-7. And he wasn't too warm to punk "O" types. Moreover, it was the 60's and Waymond was black. Rod and I gave a shit less... But Waymond would never call us by our first names. I tried to make us a "flying family" but Waymond was always distant.
    Night came down black as a coal-miners butt hole. Somewhere around us was a fire team to secure our Huey. Now, we are talking about Medical Service Corps. No guns other than Colt sidearms.
    While doing our best at "silent-mode" in the dark, Waymond jumps up and steps into the Huey. Damn Navigational lights come on (red and green), then the white flashing strobe light.
    "Either of you idiots know what tonight is," shouted Waymond?
    "Dark?"..."Scary?"..."Wednesday?".
    "CHRISTMAS EVE"!!!
    And we became a family that night.
    Couple of months later I turned back to the right-side door...Waymond wasn't there. Just a dangling "commo" cord swinging from the cabin top.
    Rod and I flew together another 2 or 3 months...Kinda strange, we never talked about Waymond.
    Some things are best kept in the memory bank.