Saber Article Index
MEDEVAC 15th Med\15th FSB
307B N Main Copperas Cove, TX 76522
FDMCKJR@AOL.COM Plain Dealing,
LA 71064 comments: "Was MEDEVAC pilot July '66 to 19 June '67. Was
glad to find this site and see so many familiar names of those I thought
I may not hear or see again. Would like to hear from you."
Mike COMSTOCK SIXGUN7022@BELLSOUTH.NET Fort Polk, LA says, "I was with
C Co. 15th MED Bn. 2-7 [Task Force] (Garryowen) at Phan Thiet 1966-1967
August. Like to talk with anyone from there and then. Bob TOMICH, Bill
BRUNNE, Cpt. SCHWARTZ, anybody?"
J.D. HOLLEY, of Huttig, AR
writes: "I served in Korea 1951 with the 15th MED Bn. 1st Cav Div."
Joseph H. SLAUGHTER, Jr. ROLLINGTHUNDER@CHEK.COM Danville, VA
requests: "I would like to hear from anyone who knew my Dad, SP5 Joseph
H.(Buddy) SLAUGHTER who served in the 15th MED. He sailed over in Oct.'65
with the division."
Marco A. ENDARA, Ph.D., M.B.A., Ret. MSG
MARCO.ENDARA@SBCGLOBAL.NET San Antonio, TX notes, "It is a shame it took
me more than 30 years to contact the First Cav. I served with the 15th
MED in 1970, and then I signed-up for a life membership with our
association. Today, I just wanted to find out the status of SABER as I
was reading a copy from Sep-Oct '70, Thanks, your Web site is
'69 MEDEVAC PSG Gordon RUSSELL
mailed: "Mike, I have found Jerry SAULS. I met him at the Ft. Benning
Post Exchange, he is fine. His wife passed on a few years ago. I have
known Jerry since we both served in the 3rd Field Hospital in the late
'50s. He has moved back in the Columbus area now and I hope to get with
him for a long get together."
Gordon, a WWII vet also e-mailed: "I
have a letter from the Consulate General, DE France A. Atlanta. They plan
to give me a 'Thank You America' Certificate for my service in WW2, if
you want, I'll send you a copy of the letter."
The letter about the
certificate reads: "Gordon, The presentation will be Wednesday, September
21st, 2005 at 2:30 PM at the Members Room, MCELREATH Hall, Atlanta
History Center, 130 W Paces Ferry Road NW, Atlanta, GA 30305-1366 and
says: 'Dear Mr. RUSSELL, In recognition of your noble contribution in
World War II, and in remembrance with endless respect and affection to
those who sacrificed their lives for the cause, the Consulate General of
France will organize a ceremony at which time the 'Thank You America'
certificates will be bestowed upon.' Sincerely, Rene-Serge MARTY, Consul
'70 to '71 PSG James MCDONALD <CSMRET@TDN.COM>asks: "Who
was the Medic and gunner in the 1st Cav Assn. calendar, April 2005,
picture? Maybe we can run a picture quiz in the next 15th MED space on
the Saber. Mac." If anyone recognizes the MEDEVAC crew members, let us
James also sent the following link where you can buy a
MEDEVAC: SO THAT OTHERS MAY LIVE lapel pin\tie tack: <HTTP: 6020_15288
product fourarmedforces.com>Or just go to
click on the unit; 1st Cav stuff.
15th MED Assn. President Murray
GIBBS informs: "FYI, If you look along the side of the screen when you
come on the Web site you will see 'Add Find Members.' This is available
to all who have joined this Web site. Any member can add a person to the
'Add Find Members.' Our Database Operator will check to see if any
members added a person to be added to the FIND Members List. When the
Database Operator sees the added name he then transfers it to the FIND
Members List. The Search Coordinator looks in the FIND Members List and
searches for whomever he can Find. Therefore, if there is a certain buddy
you are looking for, please add him to the Add Find Members. You can also
create a discussion to locate a person. Please take the time to look at
the FIND Members List. There may be a person that you know the
whereabouts, and can forward that information to me, or the Database
Operator, John CRESPI.
In response to my question to gunner Murray
GIBBS GUNNERMADMUR@AOL.COM , when I saw overlapping tours, the
president replied, "Hi Mike, Yes, John CRESPI was with us when I was
there. He was a Medic on one of the MEDEVACs I flew in. I remember doing
some weird missions with him. One time there were several guys in a mine
field. We put in a jungle jacket backwards and I lower him down to the
wounded guys. I watched his hand and head signals to do the right
things. Once he had grasped the wounded guys he would nod his head. I
would tell the pilot he is okay and to lift it up to feel the weight. We
moved the wounded to a receiving ground Medic, and get the next guy,
until we did all of them. John and I had worked, and flew together."
Norm ROBERGE, Co. C 15th MED, 4-'68 to 3-'69
NORMKARENN@WVI.COM wrote: "Hi Mike...As you may know, I have long taken
a special interest in the welfare of our injured comrade, Mr. Jerry DICK.
This special interest emanates from having some shared experiences on 24
July '68, the day of his injury. Anyway, here is a special story of an
occurrence at the '05 reunion...
"Jerry's brother, Wayne, made the
needed arrangements so that he, Jerry, and Wayne's wife Cheryl, could be
seated at the 15th MED table at the banquet on Sat. 25, June. A huge
event attended by many, many, past and present Cav. troopers,
including the Div. CG & Div. CSM, Neal CIATOLA.
"Well, since Mr.
MURPHY's law continues to prevail whenever and wherever possible, there
was a glitch in the master seating arrangements. When the DICKs and I
arrived at the banquet, Wayne was told by a staff member there that
seating them at the 15th MED table was not possible due to an apparent
mistake in seat assignments and that all 15th MED seats were already
assigned to other 15th MED members. Wayne said to the attendant that if
it was not possible to seat his brother with the 15th MED, they would
leave the banquet.
"This, in spite of having explained Jerry's
special WIA story as a 15th MED member. Sooo, I told Wayne to be patient
as I would find someone to help us solve this, it WOULD NOT stand as
"I sought out the Div. CSM whom I noticed was real busy
greeting his soldiers and their families, as you might imagine. In spite
of that, I approached him and introduced myself and noted that I was a
retired 1st Sergeant who desperately needed his assistance and influence
to help resolve this injustice to Jerry-I told the CSM Jerry's story.
He immediately excused himself from his guests and asked me where Jerry
was. I told him and he marched directly to where Jerry was seated in his
wheel chair, bent down in front of Jerry, introduced himself, and
promised Jerry that the problem would be resolved favorably for Jerry and
his family within a few minutes.
"Further minor delays ensued that
caused Wayne DICK to become angered, at which time he took Jerry and left
the banquet hall in disgust. Just at that time, the CSM appeared saying
that seating was now arranged. I told him that Wayne had just left with
Jerry, just fuming with anger. The Div. CSM immediately ran out of the
building, reaching the DICKs just before they got to the parking lot. In
short order, the CSM, Henry 'Cpt. Hook' LAND, and I were trying to
convince Wayne to come back. It took awhile, but he stayed there until
the DICKs returned to the banquet with him, where the DICKs were
indeed seated with honor, at the 15th MED table.
"There you have it.
CSM CIATOLA deserves incredible accolades for taking this time and
opportunity to ensure that justice and honor was rendered to a very
deserving 'Nam' wounded vet. To you, CSM CIATOLA, we all thank you one
more time: Vietnam Vets of the 15th MED Bn., 1st Air Cav. Division."
And Norm adds: "Hi again Mike, I thought you might like this. When
Wayne was pushing Jerry around at the museum static display, he asked
Jerry if he'd like to climb back up to a door gunner's seat one last
time. Needless to say, ever enthusiastic Jerry said 'YEA AHHH!!!' Sooo,
Wayne asked a pilot if they could help out to accommodate Jerry's wish...
immediately done, with the help of the pilot and other crew members;
POOF, Jerry was back in the gunner's seat. From all visuals, he loved it.
Once more, thanks to the help and enthusiasm of today's 1st Cav troopers,
a brother from the Nam era got his wish."
Jim CALIBRO, VP/2006
Coordinator MEDEVACCHOPPER@AOL.COM posts: "The 2006 15th MED\MEDEVAC
Reunion has been finalized for Reno, Nevada. Date; 6/22-6/25/2006.
Checkout our Web site for details: <email@example.com>
Hope to see you there. Location is: Silver Club Hotel & Casino, 1040
Sparks, NV 89432 (775)358-4771; (800)905-7774.
Joe DODSON JOED1949@HOTMAIL.COM 1309 Hall Lane, Seagoville, TX
75159, announces: "Just wanted to say Hi to all you guys. I was with B
Co. 1-12 Cav. from Dec '68 till May '69. I was re-assigned to 15th MED in
May of '69. While I was processing in at the S-1 office I let them know
that I could type, so bingo, I got a job right there in HQ, which wasn't
that bad. I had 6 months in the field being a Medic already, so the
break was nice. I didn't get to know many of the people on the flight
side, only the desk jockeys in HQ. I do have some pics of the buildings
around Phouc Vinh at that time, and a few of the guys who served with us
then. I'll dig them out and send them along. Looking forward to hearing
from any of you."
Joe replied to me, "Mike: Well thanks for
getting back to me, good to hear from past Cav guys, especially Medics.
Yes, I was with B 1-12th from Dec '68 till June '69. I was the 2nd
Plt. Medic first, and then moved to the 4th Plt later on.
we worked was around Song Be. We did the normal Cav and infantry thing;
walked all day and set up ambushes at night. For any of the guys who were
in the 1-12 at this time I bet they remember LZ's Cindy, Jake, Dot. A few
of the ones I remember. We also worked the rubber plantation some.
"I do have some photos from the area and I am going to dig them out
and see if any of the guys at the 15th MED would be interested. I will
also get them to you too. I did have one story that I would like to pass
on. I do need to think on it for a few, if you don't mind."
immediately, Joe e-mailed back: "Mike: Well I've thought about it some
and decided to share with you one story that has bothered me for all
these past years. This happened in late March or early April of 1969. We
were working in an area that had lots of slick trails and lots of NVA
moving through the area. As with most units at the time we where very
under strength. We had only 3 Medics in the entire company so I was
covering both my 4th Plt., and also the 3rd.
"We set up close to
one of these trails and had stayed there for several days. We put out a
couple of ambushes on the trail, day and night both. The platoons took
turns switching out with them. One would go out all day and the other
would stay out all night. Since we where short on Medics, I was doing
both days and nights. I did this for 3 daytime and 2 night time ambushes.
"During this time we got a new Medic in, who was to take over the 3rd
Plt. job. He had been in the field for one or two days only and it was
the 3rd Plt.'s time again for a daytime ambush. The 3rd Plt. Sgt. asked
me if I thought that the new Medic ought to go out, or should I? I told
him I was beat at that point, and since we had had no contact with the
NVA anyway, the new guy might as well learn sooner, as later.
he agreed with me, and told me to go get him and tell him he was going
out. I told the dude that he would have to learn as we all did, and to
get moving out with HIS platoon. He had no problem with it, and was more
than willing to go.
"Well, as you can guess where this is going, the
NVA had been watching us for all this time and were waiting for the
next group to move out. They ambushed them, and the new Medic was the
first guy hit, and killed. We had two others wounded.
these years I have finally realized that his death was not my fault. I
spent years and years, though, thinking it was my fault. I just knew that
if I had went out instead of him, he would be alive. I have often wanted
to try and contact his family and do, what I don't know for sure? I just
wanted to tell them, something? I never knew what that was, but I felt I
needed to say, something to them? I could not tell them that I should
have went instead of him, I know that would not work, but I still wanted
to tell them something.
"Well, that's it pretty much in a nut shell.
You're the first and only person I have told this to. I really have
gotten to the point of being OK with this. It does still cross my
thoughts sometimes, but not like it did, and not to the point of hurting
me like it did. I have accepted it, and like all the brothers we lost, I
feel for them, and their families. Maybe if by some strange chance I did
get to meet someone in his family I would just like to tell them that I
was there with him at the end, and that he was a very brave man?"
Thanks, Joe DODSON"
Those of us who think that they know how Joe
feels, because we know that war is hell; does not choose its victims;
will kill anyone in its course; give our support; as we would get
Joe's. Hell is for heroes.
DTMCGUFF@AOL.COM St. Charles,
IL signed in the 15th MED Guestbook, "Been awhile since I've been to the
site. I was with 15th MED from March 1969 to March 1970. First seven
months with Bravo 1-5 2nd Platoon and the last five months with MEDEVAC.
Just published a book about my experiences with the Cav. If you're
interested you can get it at:
I e-mailed Dale because
he indicated that he finished flying on MEDEVAC during my first three
months in the same. I could not remember him, if only extremely vaguely.
That also happened with crew chief Pat MARTIN, who was there all the
time that I was, but I did not even know of him. Dale replied:
Mike, Thanks for including the book. It is just released so it will take
a bit to get released to the normal sites. I was with MEDEVAC from
October '69 to March '70. We must have crossed paths. I flew a lot with
Dave PARKS and Mike VINYARD; Charlie HOLMES, ZEPP, and a number of
others. I knew Gus, Doc Dew, etc. Like you it seems I don't remember too
many names. It was a long time ago. However, I have a bunch of photos
that may trigger some memories. I think BARTON was the Sgt. but I'm fuzzy
on that. I should know because he was also in Bravo Co. 1-5 with me. I
was part of the group that put together the MEDEVAC and Holding Co. we
started when we built the bar in the new barracks. The book might trigger
some memories. However, even as I said in the Forward, I may have
gotten some names wrong or mixed up.
"Anyway, I'm hoping to make the
next reunion so maybe we can hook up then. If you can use the photos let
me know and I'll scan them in and send them to you. I'll attach one of
me, maybe you'll recognize it."
I let gunner Dave PARKS know that
I had found Dale, and he replied: "Hey Mike. Dave, shoot-down here...yes I
knew Dale. We flew together quite a few times. He roomed with [gunner]
Mike PARSONS. If you read the review of Dale's book, the 'Dave' he spoke
of was me. VINYARD was crew chief, Cpt. HOLMES was AC, and I think, oh
hell, I can't think of the PP's name, DAMN; and Dale was Medic!! Don't
remember much about that time. Know we made it to IKE before the ship
gave out. Landed-I say landed cuz we all walked away, that's a good
landing in anyone's book!!-in the outer perimeter wire. Don't even
remember how we got back to air ops. Later Mike, keep up the good work
with the SABER. Enjoy your writings whenever I read one! Dave,
Always remembering our 1st Cav troops on duty
around the world; over and out.
Bodnar C 2\7 '69
SO THAT OTHERS MAY LIVE