Saber Article Index
MEDEVAC 15th Med\15th FSB
307B N Main Copperas Cove, TX 76522
MEDEVAC gunner Dave PARKS said that he has
received a lot of phone calls about his broken hip. Thanks to everyone
who was concerned.
I tried to find 15th MED information on recently passed Richard "Tiny"
MELLON, but no one seems to remember him in '69. Murray GIBBS said he was
a flight Medic on MEDEVAC. Dave PARKS didn't remember him, nor '69 PSG
Gordon RUSSELL. I had even e-mailed his family address given, but no
reply. If anyone knew him and what he did in 15th MED in '69, please
Jim BRODIE firstname.lastname@example.org in Columbus, GA, says,
"Last year John BUBELA sent me a roster of the 15th that shipped over
in '65. I sent it to someone that was compiling a roster. Never heard or
seen the final roster. Is there one?"
Henry "Capt. Hook" LAND
Capthook1stcav@netscape.com at Tangerine, FL, posts, "I tried to get
into forum and it wouldn't let me. Saw article in VHPA Magazine on
MEDEVAC bird #63-08803 being restored to H model status, it left MEDEVAC
in '65, anybody serve on it or know who did? Contact:
www.AmericanHuey369.com with info. Henry"
James PERRY email@example.com South Bend, IN, comments: Served with 15th MED
originally at 'Red Beach' with Capt. JONES, Sgt. DUNCAN, COOPER.
MCKINLEY, PAVONE, CASWELL, HORN, GOODMAN, and others would like to hear
from. Moved on to Evans, and finally Phouc Vinh."
firstname.lastname@example.org from Myrtle Beach,
SC signs, "C Co., 15th MED Bn." Patrick BIENEMAN
email@example.com of Winchester, KY, writes,
"On July 7, 1968, myself and one other man were sent down ropes to aid in
the extraction of a six man LRRP team. We had one KIA and five severely
wounded WIAs. The 15th MED team hovered above our position for
approximately fifteen minutes or longer as we loaded each one of the WIAs
onto a Jungle Penetrator. They left with them and then returned to get
the KIA and us. Once again they had to hover about fifteen minutes as we
not only loaded the KIA but also all of the equipment before we were
extracted by them. I do not know who was on that team but I applaud them.
The pilot held that chopper still as all of this was being done. We were
seventy feet down in triple canopy."
'70-'71 PSG James MACDONALD
firstname.lastname@example.org contacted me on the telephone to find out more about
'69-'70 PSG L. Don BARTON. There was really nothing that I could add that
wasn't in the last column. James did get an e-mail from Don,
email@example.com , so they can take it from there.
the opportunity while he had me on the horn to reminisce about his years
serving in Vietnam. It sounded like for tax purposes, those were most of
the years of his younger life. James also sang a song for me in
Vietnamese, which interprets to: "As I carry my pack and I travel to the
mountain, it is not heavy, because I wrote your name on it we are never
I'm sure those words could originate from
many U.S. G.I.s who felt the same way, and had to carry a pack; or just
be there away from someone at home they would rather be beside, You
know you were in Nam too long when you can sing in Vietnamese.
James also e-mailed over, "Funny, small world...10/19/2009 10:30-While
shopping at Fred MEYER's in Longview, WA, I met a C 2-7 1st Cav VN Vet
who said you were in his unit; knew you by name. His name was ROACH. He
said he was MEDEVAC'd out by the 15th MEDs in '69 WIA X3 in the stomach
and chest. Thanked MEDEVAC."
That was Robert F. ROCHE, who was one of
my platoon leaders in C 2-7 Cav. He was WIA in May '69 when we were in
contact along the Song Saigon, or Saigon River, in War Zone C, out of
LZ Jamie. Like many infantry lieutenants, he was not our platoon leader
very long. On that occasion I think he went looking for trouble, and he
found it. I don't remember moving up with the platoon, just being in the
company N.D.P. with my platoon, and they had brought him back. I can only
remember looking him over; he seemed stable in the supine position,
and just like that, the MEDEVAC was there and we loaded him. It all
happened so fast. Only he knew what hit him. B-40 frags.
found an old e-mail from Mark SMITH, whom I had mentioned in the last
column. He said that when our CO, Cpt. MEAGER, had to go into the rear to
get new glasses, Lt. ROCHE filled in for him. Apparently our third
platoon was moving up, and Lt. ROCHE was with them. I was in 1st Plt.
That sounds plausible.
15th Med Association Past President\Webmaster
Murray GIBBS MEDEVAC '67-'68 firstname.lastname@example.org notifies, "I received an e-mail concerning our
member Tom GROVE whose wife, Elaine, has passed away." Tom is at
email@example.com if you want to contact him.
12th Cav Ken HOWSER
AceHigh6India@ComCast.Net first contacted me and others, trying to find
out which unit of the 1st Cav was involved with the 11th ACR on March 26,
1970, for which Alpha Troop, 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment was awarded
the Presidential Unit Citation by President OBAMA on October 20, 2009, in
the Rose Garden at the White House.
Later in the day I saw the
various television network news programs make mention of it. Charles
GIBSON on ABC informed properly, and displayed a black and white photo of
the 11th ACR in battle line out in the boonies. When I next watched
Katie COURIC, I started to fume, because she pronounced it, 11th Armored
Brian WILLIAMS then on NBC got around any faux pas that I
could cite. He mentioned them as the 11th Armored Combat Regiment.
When I was living in Copperas Cove, TX, in the late 90's, I used to
watch the local news from Waco, TX. Their reporters often went to Fort
Hood to cover events. They would always mispronounce the 1st Cav as 1st
CALVARY! I quickly got tired of hearing that, and e-mailed the station
with the definition of "cavalry," including etymology: "cavalry (kav' l
re) n. pl: ries [Fr. cavalarie <It. cavalleria <It. cavaliere
<LateLatin caballarius <Latin caballus-a horse] combat troops mounted
originally on horses but now often on motorized armored vehicles, for
"CALVARY" is derived from "Calvarium" which is
derived from the Latin, Calvaria, "skulls," used to translate the Greek
"kranion," meaning "skull," whence "cranium." The associated Aramaic word
is, "Gulgulta," derived from the Hebrew "gulgolet" meaning "skull,"
becoming the oft familiar, Golgatha. All of these said from the hill
that looked like a skull, or was a "hill of skulls" where the Romans
crucified their outlaws.
The TV station in Waco, TX, e-mailed me,
way back then, and thanked me. After that I always heard them pronounce
it correctly. When they then got it right in comparison, it was like a
bell ringing; First CAVALRY!
I had contacted 1st Cav Div. Assn.
Executive Director Dennis WEBSTER trying to find out which unit in the 1st
Cav was involved. He got back to me quickly with a forward from apparently C
227 AHB, Daniel E. TYLER firstname.lastname@example.org . Dennis
confirmed C 2-8 Cav.
I also mentioned to Dennis all of the
mispronunciations- which irks my gall, One article from <army.mil> which
came up on Google, by Nate D. HERRING, had it as the 11th Armored
Cavalry which came to aid of Charlie Company 1st CALVARY[!], etc. I had
to e-mail them, and they corrected it with: Charlie Company, 2-8 Cavalry,
1st CAVALRY Division. We should think that <army.mil> could understand a
need for the correction, and implement it.
I had also e-mailed CBS
News, but I got no reply. There was no mention of it by Katie COURIC on
her later broadcast.
I found the presentation ceremony on YouTube,
and President OBAMA says right at the start, "Alpha Troop, 1st Squadron,
11th Armored CALVARY Regiment!" The commander-in-chief of the United
States armed forces! A Harvard Law School graduate! A Harvard Law School
I tried to e-mail the White House about this, but their
Website was down. I just got it through as I write this. I'll write about
it if I hear from them.
There is a book about this incident by the
individual who campaigned for the Presidential Unit Citation, Capt. John
POINDEXTER (ret.), which is entitled: The Anonymous Battle. I could only
find it available at the 11th ACR Quartermaster Store online. I just
started to read it.
I also got from them an in-their-own-words book
on the 11th ACR in Vietnam, and a DVD. On the DVD the narrator at the
start refers to the "CALVARY!" Some being interviewed who were Desert
Training Center OPFOR say, "CALVARY!" I have some more work to do!
So, if you hear anyone say "CALVARY" when they mean "CAVALRY" please,
wake them up! That is also a form of stolen valor.
remembering our 1st Cav troops on duty around the world; over and out.
Bodnar C 2\7 '69
SO THAT OTHERS MAY LIVE