Saber Article Index
MEDEVAC 15th Med\15th FSB
307B N Main Copperas Cove, TX 76522
I received snail mail from Gerald D. MCDANIEL, E 2-5 Cav 11C
'69-'70 who had originally contacted me about his hometown
buddy, D 2-5 Cav Medic Tom MOORE, who was K.I.A. in Jan '70.
Gerald thus initiated the story of the MEDEVAC shot down
while trying to pick up the wounded from D 2-5 on 05 Jan 70,
revealed by those participating, in the last couple of Saber
Gerald wanted to say thanks, as we all do, to gunner Dave
PARKS, and MEDEVAC Medic Bill KELLER, for reminiscing.
Gerald said to read that, was both breath taking and heart
breaking. Gerald, who does not use e-mail, said to pass on to
Bill KELLER, his and the MOORE family's reassurances to take
pride in the Silver Star justly awarded.
Gerald also said that he was in soul inspiring contact with D
2-5 squad leader Kenneth W. SIERS, who had responded to the
Saber story. Kenneth has since forwarded to me the following:
"Hi Mike, Just a few thoughts after reading the article in
the Saber regarding Bill KELLER,...ken." Original Message----
From: SIERS Kenneth W Civ AFRL/VSOSR Sent: Friday, June 17,
2005 1:42 PM To: Subject:
"Hi Bill, Just finished reading the article in the Saber
regarding the MEDEVAC crash on Jan 05, 1970. I was a squad
leader at the ripe old age of 20, with Delta Company that
day; doesn't seem like 35 years ago wow!
"I just want to let you know that you guys are the bravest,
and most respected troops to us on the ground. I remember
that chopper hovering, thinking, those guys are nuts,
then all hell broke loose. What I saw was the door gunners
hopping out to see whom they could help...you guys were
awesome that day, and when we made it back to LZ Ike, the
buzz was how brave you guys were.
"Please don't blame yourself...your efforts were what counted
that awful day. You guys were heroes to us then, and you
remain heroes to us to this very day...I'll never forget the
sacrifice your crew made that day, and I know I can speak for
anyone who's ever needed your help, you are truly heroes,
thanks again. Ken SIERS, Chelmsford, MA."
I feel the same way Ken. That's why I had extended my tour
six months to fly on MEDEVAC, just to try to contribute even
Mark "DOC" HOLIDAY Valencia, CA signed
in the Guestbook and comments: "Just surfed on, its been some
time since I have looked on this page, good to see some new
names. Keep up the good work, crew chief '70-'71. Clear left
Mark "DOC" HOLIDAY."
I saw on PBS's History Detectives an investigated story about
a Revolutionary War cannon that a Boston woman was fascinated
by, kept in a local national park storage facility. She had
heard that in 1774, members of the Boston Militia stole the
cannon from the Boston Armory and hid it on her ancestor's
land. She wanted to know if the attempt by British forces to
retrieve this and other cannons was one which precipitated
the first battle of the Revolutionary War.
The answer, I believe, was yes, and an intact duplicate was
found on display in Boston's Bunker Hill Memorial Tower. The
British had sent troops out to Lexington and Concord, MA, to
find those weapons. We know the rest of the story. For her
historical contribution, the series detectives awarded her a
visit to a Revolutionary War reenactment group who were
cannoneers and gave to her a medal of the patron saint of
artillerymen, Saint Barbara.
I mention this because there was an LZ\FSB St. Barbara in
South Vietnam's III Corps which was a fire base that was also
home to 2-8 Cav in early '69, about six klicks north of Nui
Ba Den, in Tay Ninh Province; XT274680, or XT276678. I always
wondered why they had named it that. I figured that you just
had to be Roman Catholic to understand. You probably still
Thanks to J.D. COLEMAN: Incursion: From America's Chokehold
on the NVA Lifelines to the Sacking of the Cambodian
Sanctuaries, An Insider's Account; New York: St. Martin's
Press 1991, p. 67 and p. 203, for specifics, and '69-'70 D
2-7 Cav SSG Peter COLE for coordinates. If anyone knows more
about this all, right or wrong, e-mail me.
Kevin T. RAFERTY writes in the Guestbook:
"I've got to tell you guys who are signed in, it is so great
to hear about the great men of MEDEVAC, i.e. COOPER, HOLIDAY,
and Baby HUEY. I was with MEDEVAC '70-'71 @ Phouc Vinh at the
main base before standing down to Bien Hoa. I am hoping to
finally make the 1st Cav Reunion this year. Would do my mind
some good; you guys know what I mean; later."
SFC (Ret) Jeff DANIEL says, "My
father served from Aug '65 to Sep '66 in An Khe. His name was
SFC James (Jim) DANIEL, and I believe at that time he was in
HHC or Charlie Company 15th MED Bn., 1st Air Cav.
"He passed away in 1985, and I never got the chance to know
him. I have bits of information from his partial service
record, such as; he was with the 15th MED in An Khe part of
'65 and '66.
"I know it is a shot in the dark; however, I thought I would
ask if any of you knew him and/or you could tell me more
about the role of the 15th MED during that time frame.
Thank all of you for your service, and I hope all is well.
Sincerely, Jeff DANIEL."
About SFC James DANIEL from Bob MCKINLEY (SFC Ret) MEDEVAC
'67-'68 "Vetsgtmac1" : "Maybe Clyde
BENSENHAVER would know him. He was in B Co. '65-'66. Bob."
15th MED Assn. President Murray GIBBS e-mailed: "Hi Guys, The
2006 15th MED Association Reunion will be in Reno, NV next
year. It will most likely be sometime between 15 June 06 to
15 July 06. Our Vice President/Reunion Coordinator will be
making the arrangements. As soon as we have the information
set it will be posted.
"Going to the 2005 1st Cav Div Association Reunion was fun
along with being a good learning experience. We met a lot of
1st Cav Div Assn. members that we would have not met if we
didn't attend. Our plans are to attend the 1st Cav Div Assn.
Reunion every other year when it is at Fort Hood. We also met
some old faces, but new to the Reunions this Reunion. Hope to
Murray adds, "There were more 1st Cav Div Assn. members
attending this reunion than the previous one. We had about 20
15th MED Assn. members attend. It was a fast 4 or 5 days for
most of us. We had our meeting at Big Al's and
elected/appointed the officers for 2005-2006: ELECTED
OFFICERS President--Murray GIBBS ;
Vice President--Jim CALIBRO ;
Treasurer--Robert MCKINLEY ;
Alt-Replacement--Mike SNITH .
"APPOINTED OFFICERS Secretary--Maurice (Corky) WALSH
; Reunion Coordinator 2006--Jim CALIBRO
; Database Operator-John CRESPI
; Search Coordinator--Norm ROBERGE
; Historians--Art MARTIN
, Tim KIRWIN--,
Paul TROOP--when computer available.
"This year will be more challenging and new plans of action
will be developed to help promote better communication,
involvement, and revealing information; past, present and
future. Next year's Reunion will be in Reno. Dates and place
for the Reunion will be determined ASAP. We will make contact
with every known member by either: e-mail, snail mail, or
phone. President 15th MED Association, Murray GIBBS, MEDEVAC
'67-'68. SO THAT OTHERS MAY LIVE"
And, last but not least, Murray sent: "Jim CALIBRO sent me
the minutes from the 2005 Reunion. Copies also went to Corky
WALSH and Bob MCKINLEY. Just want to let Corky, Art MARTIN,
and Mike BODNAR know we missed them at the Reunion.
"It looks like we have a strong group of officers this coming
year. One of our biggest objectives this year will trying to
get the 17 foot lockers in Washington, of the 15th MED Bn.,
moved to Kansas City. John CRESPI is our new Database
Operator. The information in these foot lockers will greatly
help. John expects to find all the rosters and Morning
Reports. There should also be all the orders for promotion
and awards. We also hope to find orders for awards that were
turned in but shot down by selfish individuals. If we do find
this we want to get those awards that were refused, for
whatever selfish reasons, awarded to those who deserve them.
This will be a step by step progress.
"Next year's Reunion will be in Reno. Jim CALIBRO is going
there next week to see what he can start setting up for us.
The dates for next year's Reunion will be sometime between 15
June to 15 July, '06. Once the date is set we can start
making this reunion as good as the 2004 one, if not better.
"I plan to draft up a Reunion application similar to the 1st
Cav Div Assn. I like the way they do it. We don't need a
repeat on what happened to Corky at the 2004 Reunion. He was
left with a $1200.00 bill due to an over estimate on the
dinners. Thanks to all those members who chipped in $100.00
each, it help reduce the indebtedness to Corky. When I come
up with this draft I will present to you all for approval.
Once approved, I will e-mail it out to all members, or snail
mail it out to those who don't have an e-mail address.
"Updating our members' database will be another objective to
work on this year. We have many members in our database with
bad, or no e-mail addresses, no mail addresses or wrong
addresses due to moving, no phone numbers or wrong numbers.
Our database has grown from the 200 known members in 2003 to
about 575 known members in 2005.
"Finally, these objectives will be worked on by John CRESPI:
1. Reproduce the old MEDEVAC patch. 2. Check into the cost of
a 'Challenge Coin' 15th MED\MEDEVAC. 3. Research the history
of the 1st MEDEVAC squad by mailing letters to other
"The CAB/CMB has been passed by the House. We are waiting for
the Senate to pass it and it looks very strong that it will
be sometime shortly. Any help our members can provide by
contacting their Senators will be very much appreciated.
Will keep posted on any update and progress as we move
forward. By the way.....Happy Birthday to: Bob MCKINLEY & Jim
Also, happy birthday to all applicable, at this time, as long
as we're at it. I had read in the forwarded news of the
passing, of any combat aeromedical evacuation badge, the Army
has opposed awarding a group-specific medal. "To attempt to
identify soldiers in specific categories has an adverse
effect on team concept and uniformity of purpose," Lt. Col.
Kevin V. ARATA, an Army public affairs officer, said
previously. I may have more on this in the next Saber column.
If you couldn't have done it just for the fulfillment of
doing it, then you shouldn't have done it.
In reference to the last column's mention of the need to
correct the memorial plaque in Oregon for '68 D 2-7 Cav CMOH
recipient John Noble HOLCOMB, Norm ROBERGE
wrote: "Mike...Acquisition trail was
lost years ago...However, problem HAS been solved, a new
memorial with correct spelling is now being made. Thanks to
all for assistance. Norm"
Always remembering our 1st Cav troops on duty around the
world; over and out.
Bodnar C 2\7 '69
SO THAT OTHERS MAY LIVE