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Bill Brandt

You can think of that as either a lousy day or a great day. In the lousy column: You almost drowned in some shitty water. On the great column: You lived to tell about it.


I guess stealth was optional on this mission?


You would of liked it in 1978 it was a dry year and the paddys were all dry. I was in a 4.2 platoon so we got to drive everywhere. There were piles of rice straws all over the place which we decided to use to line the bottom of our shelter half tents. Found out that night it had the secret ingredient. I can still see the ROK air force still using F-86s zipping around the valley.

Paul L. Quandt

1986 was also a largely dry year for Team Spirit. As I was in the CalARNG, we only got to play for three weeks. I, too, was an RTO, but as we were with a mech infantry bn, I was riding, not walking ( mostly ).

Thanks for the post.
Paul L. Quandt


I deeply sympathize. I, too was an RTO at one time, but never had anything like that happen. Most trouble I had was trying to get out of a CH-34 expeditiously with that PRC-25 on my back. There is only one door on a CH-34, and it is quite small. Every time I tried to hop out that damn radio would hit the top of the door and knock me back inside. I just couldn't seem to squat low enough.

I am puzzled. Why did you carry your pack on your chest? Was it to use a seatbelt? That is certainly after my time.


My first Huey ride (I was an RTO, too), involved me with my ruck in my lap and unable to find the seatbelt when we landed in the dark. Seconds later, the door is open and my side is empty but for me holding my ruck up and fumbling blindly for my seatbelt with the other. Finally, the crew chief gets out, comes over and takes my ruck so I can unbuckle. I grab the ruck, run out into the dark and throw my ruck on the ground and jump to knee and then into the prone. As I do, someone cries out in pain because I kneed them square in the back. Turns out it was my PSG, who was complaining in the morning that "somebody" had thrown their ruck on him and then kneed him in the back. Fortunately, nobody knew the real story. And, yes, the seatbelt was one of those ridiculously simple old Huey seat belts.


I used to love riding in Hueys. It can be especially interesting when all those silly safety rules are "relaxed" for operational reasons. We once used a single-ship LZ that was just a large crater on the side of a steep hill. The Huey would balance with the front of its skids on the downhill lip of the crater. The rotor blades were actually below ground level in the uphill part of the crater.

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