Team 24 Kon Tum-Dak

MACV Team 24 – Kon Tum-Dak.

This Page is intended for the discussion of the Military Assistance Command Vietnam Team 24 located in Kon Tum-Dak.

148 thoughts on “Team 24 Kon Tum-Dak

  1. Trying to get info on a C-7 Caribou that was hit and crash landed on 4 Apr 1970 while performing a drop at Dak Seang in Kontum Province. My uncle, MAJ Frederick W. Dauten was co-pilot on that flight(6 2-4180). The three crew members were initially listed as MIA, then later KIA after the wreckage was found. I know it was over a month before they were found/located (based on the telegrams from the Air Force). I am hoping someone that was there during that time frame may have been part of the search and rescue/recovery. Any information is greatly appreciated. Too many unanswered questions as the after action report says, “The #4 aircraft was observed to enter a steep diving turn and then to level off as if under control. The right engine was burning when the aircraft crashed about 3000 meters east southeast of the camp.” Thank you-

    Tim Dauten
    USAF 1989-1992

  2. I just searched for Kontum Team 24 after reading a comment in my VFW magazine. I was stationed there from April 67 – March 68 as part of the security team. I remember a few names from then, my hooch mate Mike Torpey, Richard Parzych, Richard Weill, Ernie Steinmeyer, Aaron Oberholtzer, James Hill, Danny Scheff. Larry Moblad. I don’t know if I have all the names spelled correctly or not. There was a name mentioned in an earlier comment, Joseph Cabrerra, who I kind of remember from back then. It’s hard to believe that it’s been 50 years.

  3. Ralph: My hooch was directly across from your hdqtrs office door. I use to play music for your staffer while I was at lunch. I was MI, G-2 Air while at Kontum. Also was pay officer. Late ’68 until end of ’69. Tried to look you up when I came home to say hello. Hope all is well. Nice to see that you are still with us. James Patrick Garland, 1st LT.

    • Thank you, welcome home. I just talked to Bill Greinke and he filled me in on the next reunion which I will attend in Va. I told him that was my home of record.

  4. Does anyone remember MSGT Hugh Miller Robbins, MACV21, KIA 06/01/65? I recently was in the DakTo subsector of Vietnam 50 years to the day after my father, Major Richard H Lowery, MACV24, was KIA on 12/30/66. While in Pleiku I went to visit the Ho Chi Minh museum. While everything was in Vietnamese, and not focused on the war with America, they did display a MSGT Robbins military ID and his mess card from where he was stationed in Pleiku. I imagined he was KIA and the Vietnamese came in procession of his IDs. This was confirmed later while I was visiting my cousin in Chiang Mai, Thailand:

    If anyone is interested OR if anyone knows of MSGT Robbins family, I can forward these pictures. You can contact with me on Facebook (Richard Lowery).

    • My father, Captain Charles Chesak was there May 66-67 and often commented on the death of your father. My dad returned home from that war 50 years ago last month, and I am starting to unpack some of his writings on his experiences. As a matter of fact for years I’ve had the Combat After Action Report on your father hanging on my wall with other Vietnam related artifacts. My dad got a pile of documents from the National Archives back in the 80’s and that one stuck out, for obvious reasons. Will send more info.

      Glad to find this. -Mark Chesak

      Captain Charles Chesak: 23 May 66 – 21 May 67, G-4 Advisor, Sepc Tact Zone 24, II Corps Advisory Group, Kontum

      • Mark, I am sorry to hear of your recent loss. It is wonderful that you and your family have been able to enjoy your father in the years since his return from the war. My journey to Vietnam last December was remarkable and I honestly have no ill feelings towards these wonderful people. My trip served as closure since I lost my father at a young age. Thank you for responding to my post and perhaps you can share a photo of your father while he was with MACV-24 (or any other memorabilia) . I will look through the pictures I have of my father to see if I can find your father (I can only identify him by name now). I am pretty sure my father spent most of his time at Dak To in close proximity to the Phoenix Airstrip. The pictures I have of him match the mountain ranges in this area. Kon Tum was approximately 10 miles from this area as I recall, and this is where they had the memorial service for my father and Captain Starr (also KIA with my father). I invite you to look at my facebook page (around Dec 29-30, 2016) as I have some nice narratives and pictures during my visit with my son (Richard H. Lowery III). I can’t believe its been all these years and here we are talking about this!!! It really would have been special to talk to your father about mine. Peace be with you brother and I look forward to hearing from you.

        Regards,

        Richard H Lowery Jr

      • Mark, My name is Daniel Lowery. Richard and Eva are my brother and sister. Major Richard H Lowery was my father. I wonder if it is possible to obtain a copy of the After Action Report from you?

    • Dear Richard,
      On Sat. June 17, 2017 I happened upon this website while I was looking for an original copy of “Death in the Bamboo”. This was about your father and my late husband, Capt.Edward I. Starr, being ambushed. I can’t believe I came across Mark Chesak;s response to your inquiry dated January 2017 on this same day. I have always been looking for someone that knew Ed. May 2015, I received a call from Maj. George Wallace, he had been on the radio talking to Ed when he was killed. He had wanted to be in touch with my son and I for many years but was never sure how he would be received. We enjoyed our long visits with him, he answered a number of questions that I have had. He asked if I knew where your family is or if I had ever been in touch with you as he had been unable to locate you. If you don’t mind, I would like to let him know.

      • Hello Jane Starr Cronin,

        I am full of curiosity regarding the “Death in the Bamboo”; I have never heard of this but will certainly search the internet. I would be honored if you passed my information along to Maj. George Wallace. If you have followed my trail on this website you can see I have had some interesting information exchange. I even had the wife of someone contact me on facebook. Please feel free to look me up on facebook; I have some nice posts and pictures from my father as well as my visit to Vietnam this past December. I feel I have grown up in the memory of your late husband, Captain Edward Starr. The picture of their memorial service at the Wooden church in KonTum with their names (LOWERY ET STARR) on the same banner has always been with me. Please feel free to discuss what you wish with me; again, I invite you to contact me on facebook .

        Regards.

        • Richard,

          I just spoke to Mrs. Wallace, Maj. Wallace’s wife and they are pleased to learn of this site so that he can be in touch with you.

          Please let me know how to contact you on your facebook site as I went to what I thought was yours but didn’t find anything to do with Vietnam. Is there another way that we can communicate?

          I have the copy that I received of “Death in the Bamboo” by Harold Ellithorpe and would be more than glad to send you a copy. It is to long to post on this site.

          Thank you,

          Jane

          • Jane,

            please search “Richard Lowery” in facebook. Also, “University of Arizona” could also be used to narrow the search and find me. My email is rhlowery001@yahoo.com. I can’t tell you how exciting this is for me and my family. Thank you so much!

            I encourage ALL MACV users to REACH OUT; your stories should never be forgotten and may serve fill a void in many people’s lives affected by your shared experiences.

            Regards to all,

            Richard Lowery

    • I did not know Sgt. Robbins. He was killed before I arrived in Pleiku in July 66 But our team house was named after him. Robbins House.. John Ace. I was the team Medic there.

      • The museum in Pleiku was established by the communist after the war. The fact that MSGT Robbins military ID was retained means personal belongings were not returned to family. If you or anyone know of Hugh Miller Robbins family contact information please let me know. I would like to forward pictures of this to them.

        Respectfully,
        Richard H Lowery

        • Hello Richard,

          I have sent you an email about Msgt. Robbins. We were so surprised to learn that some of his personal belongings were in a museum in Pleiku and are interested in seeing the photographs and learning more about this. Many thanks,
          Wendy W. Bingham

      • Mr. Ace, did you meet my father, Major Richard H Lowery (MACV 24)? He arrived September ’66 and was KIA with Captain Starr on December 30, 1966.

        Thank you for responding to my earlier post,
        Richard H Lowery

      • Dear John Ace,
        Thank you for sharing what you know of Sgt. Robbins. He is my step-grandfather and was married to my grandmother in 1946. Was Robbins house located in Pleiku? Do you know why they would name it after him? My father is also a Vietnam War veteran. Many thanks, Wendy Whittenberger Bingham

    • Hugh M. Robbins was married to my grandmother (Marguerite Anderson Buckalew) in 1946 and is my mother’s step-father. We would be grateful if you shared what you found with the family. My father is also a Vietnam War veteran. Many thanks, Wendy Whittenberger Bingham

    • Dear Mr. Lowery, I wasn’t able to find you on Facebook, but I hope we hear from you on this site. Thank you. Wendy W. Bingham

    • My father, Maj Richard H. Lowery, US Army, was assigned to MACV-24 and served in Dak To Sep – Dec 1966. He was KIA on December 30, 1966 along with another American soldier. My son and I (both named after my father) travelled to Dak To and Kon Tum on the 50th anniversary of his death and founf the Phoenix Airbase, the area that the US Army (and I’m guessing the South Vietnamese Army) had their base east of the airstrip, and the catholic “Wooden church” in Kon Tum where my father’s memorial service was held after hs death. If anyone is interested I have pictures I can post; please let me know.

      Richard H. Lowery Jr

      • Richard, I often attended mass at the Old Wooden Church in Kontum and would really like for you to post your pictures

        • Are you Captain Charles Chesak: 23 May 66 – 21 May 67, G-4 Advisor, Sepc Tact Zone 24, II Corps Advisory Group, Kontum?

      • 2000_0313 From Colonel Donald A Seibert

        DEAR MARK,
        YOUR LETTER AND VIDEOTAPE ARRIVED JUST BEFORE MEMORIAL DAY. I HAD NOT REALIZED THAT HIS VIETNAM TOUR HAD AFFECTED YOUR FATHER SO ADVERSELY. I HAVE GREAT SYMPATHY FOR YOUR DAD, AS WELL AS YOUR MOTHER AND ALL THE FAMILY. IT IS HARD TO UNDERSTAND WHY SOME EXPERIENCES HURT ONE PERSON MORE THAN ANOTHER.

        AS YOU WILL NOTE, I AM SENDING A COPY OF THIS MESSAGE TO LTC “DUTCH’ PASSAILAIGUE, WHO WAS THE SENIOR ADVISOR TO THE 42ND ARVN REGT AT DAK TO/TANCANH. I HAVE DISCUSSED YOUR LETTER WITH DUTCH, BUT HE DOES NOT RECALL THE AMBUSH OF YOUR FATHER ON HWY 14. LT BORREGO WAS ONE OF THE ADVISORS TO THE BN OF THE 42ND ARVN REGT WHICH WAS STATIONED IN KONTUM, AND OF COURSDE WORKED FOR DUTCH. HE DOES RECALL THAT INCIDENT, BUT THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE INCIDENT WERE NOT CLEAR THEN AND ARE EVEN MORE UNCLEAR NOW.

        THE FOLLOWING PARAGRAPH IS FROM MY OWN NOTES ON THE DEATH OF THE TWO ADVISORS KILLED IN THE DAK TO/TANCANH AREA:
        Shortly after my promotion a tragic incident happened at Dak To. About three weeks after MAJ Dick Lowery and CPT Ed Starr, two talented officers, were assigned as advisors at Dak To Subsector, the Dist HQ was attacked. Both Starr and Lowery left the compound to rally the RFPF and pursue the Viet Cong. Both were killed. It was a blow to all of us. A memorial mass was held in the Catholic Church in Kontum which COL Phuoc, LTC Doan, Don Creuziger, and all of the advisors attended. There were other memorials and tributes to these two fine soldiers, the first advisors killed while I was the Senior Advisor of the 24th STZ .

        THE VIDEOTYPE WAS GRAPHIC AND DEPICTED THE PROBLEM YOUR FATHER HAS HAD IN COMING TO TERMS WITH HIS VIETNAM DUTY. AT ONE POINT HE MENTIONED DAK PEK, WHEN I BELIEVE HE MEANT DAK TO. DAK PEC WAS A SPECIAL FORCES CAMP ABOUT 50 MILES NORTH OF KONTUM ON HWY 14.
        I WOULD BE GLAD TO LOOK OVER YOUR DAD’S NOTES, ONCE YOU HAVE THEM INTEGFRATED AND EDITED. I BELIEVE STRONGLY, THAT THE NOTES SHOULD REMAIN AS NEARLY AS POSSIBLE IN THE SAME SYNTAX AS THEY WERE ORIGINALLY WRITTEN IN BY YOUR DAD. I WILL ONLY ATTEMPT TO RECALL NAMES, DATES AND PLACES AND PERHAPS CORRECT SPELLING OF THOSE ITEMS. THE NOTES SHOULD REEFLECT YOUR DAD’S FEELINGS AS WRITTEN.
        SORRY I HAVE NOT BEEN OF MORE HELP. PLEASE GIVE MY SINCERE EREGARDS TO BOTH YOUR PARENTS.
        SINCERELY, DON SEIBERT

        • Dear Mark,
          On June 17, 2017 I came across your reply to Richard H. Lowery, Jr. I came across the site just by accident and was amazed to see your response, particularly on the same day I was scanning this website. It was very nice to read the note from Don Seibert about my late husband, Capt. Edward I. Starr and Maj. Richard Lowery. I am overwhelmed with all that I have been able to learn in reading your postings. It is wonderful that Richard, Jr. and his son were able to go to Dak To on Maj. Lowery’s 50th Anniversary. This is so special. I have been blessed to have found this site and look forward to sharing it with our son, Glenn. Thank you so much.

          Jane Starr Cronin

        • Mr Seibert, my father was Major Richard H Lowery. If I understand correctly, you were the senior advisor for MACV team 24 when my father was assigned there. I have made many posts on this website and appreciate anything you could share with me about my father. Initial impressions, experiences and interactions, communications, even regarding when he was KIA. Thank you for the opportunity to reach out to someone who worked with/knew my father.

          Respectfully,
          Richard H Lowery

  5. I was with the Macs team in 67-68 and have been trying to find SSG Wilson, my team leader we worked kontume and Dakota as well as thew tea plantation We had an interpiture named chuck who was a Mountinyard.

  6. Thank you veterans for your selfless service. My father, Richard Homer Lowery, was KIA on December 30, 1966, in Vietnam. He was a Major in the US Army assigned to Advisory Team 24. He was the Sub-sector Advisor to the Kon Tun Sub-sector, Dak To Sector (Republic of Vietnam) and was killed by hostile forces. Me (Richard H Lowery Jr) and my son (Richard H Lowery lll) will travel to Vietnam this December and pay tribute to honor our family loss on the 50th anniversary of his death. Can anyone please share your experiences and thoughts as to where we should travel to make this a very memorable journey for me and my son? I am especially interested in visiting the area where my father made the supreme sacrifice for our country. Again, thank you all for personal sacrifices.

    • I was assigned to Advisory Tm 24 from1966 to 1967. We were called Sector and Dakto was our Sub-sector. I believe Dakto was a 4 man team. I remember Major Lowery and Captain Starr. They were both killed in an ambush. As I was the Company Clerk/Radio operator I was the one who typed the letters of condolence to the families. I also accompanied their belongings to Saigon. They were both put in for the Silver Star which was later down-graded to Bronze Star for Valor. On 9/26/2016 I was very honored to accompany 84 other Vietnam Vets on a Honor Flight to Washington DC. While there, I visited the Vietnam Memorial Wall where I found these 2 officers names. Words can’t describe my feelings. If any of you get a chance to go, please go!!! We were treated like royalty by everyone in Washington DC. When we arrived home, we were met by 400 to 500 loud and vocal people. It was quite a change from 50 years ago.

      • Mr. Rider, I am speechless to see your response and I apologize for not checking these posts earlier. I would have loved to exchange with you before I took my recent trip to Vietnam. I also made another entry on this site just moments ago, perhaps you can review what I had to say about my trip to Dak To. My son and I actually flew into Saigon for a few days and then flew into the regional airport at Pleiku. From there I hired a driver and tour guide (interpreter) to take us up to Kon Tum and Dak To (about 100 km north). The tour guide was especially good at locating areas of interest (Phoenix Air Base, the site of the US forces in the vicinity of the airbase, and Wooden church in Kon Tum where my father and Captain Starr were memorialized). I encourage you to look at my facebook (Richard H Lowery) as I have posted some meaningful memories that you may enjoy reading. I would be honored if you sent me a friend request.

        You mentioned you knew my father; is there anything you can tell me to help me understand more about him? I was 7 when he was killed, and prior to this he served many temporary assignments that took him away from his family. I have so few memories. Can you tell me if you were at my father’s memorial service? I have pictures of many soldies attending his service at what appears to be a chaple (guessing at the base in Dak To); I would love to send to you if you are interested.

        Again, I want to sincerely thank you for taking the time to post. I enjoyed the visit to Vietnam and may plan another in the near future. I have worked in China for the past 5 years and I have wonderful access to Asia. Thank you for your service to our county and for the people of Vietnam. I truly enjoyed my time with them; they are loving, respectful and honorable people.

      • Does anyone have contact with Mike Rider SP-4? I replied to his 9/28/2016 post and would like him to see this. If anyone can contact him, much appreciated.

      • Dear Mike,
        On June 17, 2017 I was very fortunate to come across this website and to view the postings by Maj. Richard Lowery’s son and the responses he received. My late husband was, Capt. Edward I. Starr whom was with Maj. Lowery when they were ambushed. For so long I have wanted to meet or be in touch with someone that knew Ed in Vietnam. I found this site while I was looking for an original copy of the article “Death in the Bamboo” as mine has faded and you can’t see the picture that was included in the article. Mine was a copy of the original and maybe there was a reason why we can’t see the picture. It is special to know that you were the one to have accompanied their belongings to Saigon and that you had typed the letters of condolence to us. I received many nice letters and pictures of the memorial service that was held for Maj. Lowery and Ed. It is nice to know that Richard Lowery, Jr. and his son were able to return to Dak To on the anniversary of the death of Maj. Lowery and Ed. God Bless you all.

      • Dear Mike,

        It pleases me to know that you knew my husband, Capt. Starr and Maj. Lowerey and that you had accompanied their belongings to Saigon. I still have the letters of condolence that I received at that time, thank you.

        Jane

  7. I was in Kontume & Dakto 1967-68 At Camp Plei do Lim My team leader was SSG Wilson and our interpreter was a Mountain yard named chuck. This is the first time I have tried to find anyone that i served with. We secured an area in Dakto east of the tea plantation for the 4/42nd to put their guns in the ground first time i ever saw or herd 175 howitzers. My ears still ring today From the tet offensive . Does anyone know who all was with team 24 at that time.

    • I wasn’t with Team 24 during TET68, but a good buddy of mine, CPT Bernie Hendricks, the Psywar/Psyops Advisor was there. Both of us came in-country in Jan 68 at the same time after coming from Ft Bragg’s Psywar/Psyops training. We both showed up at the in-country briefings in Saigon before separating, he to Team 24, me to Team 89 (Phouc Tuy Province). Bernie passed away several years ago.
      Richard B.C.Tom, LTC, USAR Retired.

      • I remember a captain Hendricks I was there from June 67 thru July68 There was a red head captain but i cannot remember his name.

      • I came to Team 24 in August ’68 and remember CPT Hendricks. Initially I was G-3 Air Advisor and later became HHQ Detachment Commander.

        • Hi, Ralph:
          Good to hear from you and I hope to see you at our reunion in Fairfax, VA, this Sep 6-8/9.
          Best,
          Joel Gartenberg

    • Art: I’m a Team 22 & 23 Alum having served in 70/71 and am part of a large group, which includes alum from ’64 thru ’73; and who are planning our third reunion this coming Sep in Fairfax, VA. I’d be glad to add you to our mailing list and to share our roster if you can send me your contact information. I can be reached at bgreinke@att.net. Hope to hear further from you.

  8. Looking for the glue/information to tie these people to others, tie the events into some order. What MACV team/s were involved? 1966-1967. One company of Cao Dai; One company of Hoa Hao who went on search and avoid operations every 6-8 weeks; a larger unit of 300 montagnards who only went on one operation. There was a CIA fellow who worked with the montagnards, but he was gone from the area for a long time, thus the yards were not put to work. Army Major Joe Jenkins for a while and Army Capt “Ringo” Starr. Starr was killed Dec 66 in an ambush near Dak To District, north of Kontum, [http://www.virtualwall.org/ds/StarrEI01a.htm] and Dave Sisson.
    Recollections and suggestion will be appreciated.

    • My father, Richard Homer Lowery, was KIA on December 30, 1966, in Vietnam. I have pictures of his memorial service where Captain Starr name was with my father’s as they were killed at the same attack. My father was a Major in the US Army assigned to Advisory Team 24. He was the Sub-sector Advisor to the Kon Tun Sub-sector, Dak To Sector (Republic of Vietnam) and was killed by hostile forces. Me (Richard H Lowery Jr) and my son (Richard H Lowery lll) will travel to Vietnam this December and pay tribute to honor our family loss on the 50th anniversary of his death.

    • I’m looking to see if anyone knew my dad, Charles Ray Adams. He was in Kontum July 1968 – 1969. I have many photographs from that time. Please contact me if you have any info please. Thank you!

      • Here is the email address for someone who probably knew your dad and was a member of the Security Platoon about the same time. His name is Joe Cabrera – Joe Cabrera (rvnkontum@comcast.net)

  9. Norbert,
    MACV Team 24 in Kontum. Assitant Artillery Advisor to the 63rd ARVN Arty Bn and later G-3 Air Advisor. Nov 69-Nov 70.

  10. Randy,
    I don’t recall any MACV discussion when we met last year. We talked about our days at Artillery OCS and my friend and contemporary Mark Steiner KIA. What team were you on? Where were based?
    Norb Weller

  11. Welcome home. Visited Dak To DHQ once. I was at tan Cahn Jan 70 to Jan 71 with the 42nd. Do you recall the American missionary living in TV village who sold yard souviners.

  12. I will be there! This is 1 operation I will be happy to be part of.
    Ben Youmans , Advisory Team Leader, 4/42nd, Jan 70 — Jan 71. Tan Cahn.

  13. Thanks, Bill, for coordinating the reunion. I’ve made flight, car, and hotel reservations and am looking forward to seeing old friends and making new ones along with, of course, telling and hearing war stories. 8-))))
    Best,
    Joel
    Tm 23 2nd Bn Advisor, Aug 68-Feb 69; 24 STZ G-3 Air Advisor Feb 69-Aug 69.

  14. TEAM REUNION — All Teams serving the Tan Cahn/Kontum Areas of Operation; including Teams 22, 22 (Fwd), 23, 24; Advisors with the 22nd ARVN Div, the 4oth, 41st & 42nd Rgts for example. ***REUNION 17-18 SEP15 in CLEARWATER, FL *** for Registration & Details go to: macvtmreunion.myevent.com *** Current registered attendees range from 1963 thru 1971. Catch-up with old friends and maybe collect on an old debt!??! PASS THE WORD!!!
    Feel free to contact me with questions: bgreinke@att.net (Bill Greinke 1LT/CPT TanCahn/Kontum 70/71.)

  15. TEAM 22 KONTUM, TEAM 23 AND 24SIT-REP—Mark your calendars as the dates for the get together will be Sept. 17 & 18, 2015. Clearwater, FL. We have a recon unit checking for hotels, restaurants etc. Told them not to look for bars as any good Advisor can find one within 100miles.
    There two guys, Frank DeLong and Bill Grienke who have condo/lodging in the area. If anyone else does great. We will try to find a moderate priced hotel for all others. I know this will not be huge the first time but it is a start. Gentlemen we are not getting any younger. Remember we all shared an experience in an area that was part of the key corridor for the PAVN to win the war. We helped keep them from doing that while we were there with a lot of US units help. It does not matter what year or what job you did, we were all involved with the Kontum province Vietnamese especially the 42nd ARVN Infantry Regiment. Team 22 Div Fwd, 23 and 24 and any other US who supported supplied or assisted us are welcome also. This is a family friendly party. Tentative itinerary is Friday night meet and greet share stories photos history etc, Saturday Morning enjoy the local area and beaches or hang and share more “war stories (sometimes know as “you had to be there to believe it”. Saturday nite cocktails and dinner somewhere local. Short opening to honor our fallen teammates. I will look at the Coffelt Database and try to find team members. PLs send me via email any names of guys who died while with our teams. byoumans70@gmail.com If anyone is interested in maybe having a nice Polo shirt with name team numbers years there etc let me know and will look for a vendor unless someone has one already and get us a good price. ALSO if you did not recently get an email on this then I don’t have your email on the distribution list, send it to me to stay up on the news.

  16. Probably it was on January 1971 when in Kontum the vc were digging a tunnel toward the MACV helipad. Looks like they miscalculate where to make the exit and showed up their heads at about 25 yards from the perimeter. We fire a lot of rounds to keep them inside the tunnel and in the morning the tunnel had to be blown.

  17. All team 23,24,22nd div forward etc. If u worked with or supported the 42nd Infantry Regiment ARVN u are welcome and families. Clearwater Fl, Sept 2015
    More detail later.
    Email me if interested at
    byoumans70@gmail.com

    • Ben, You seem to be point man for the Kon Tum teams. I was just in Kon Tum a couple wks ago and met a former intrepreter Lt John Le Van Ho who would like to contact some of his American buddies. He was at the Kon Tum district team and Plei O outpost. He is looking for Lt Carter, Cpt Bearson and Cpt Simpson. My email is: lundm@chartermi.net

      • Hi Max.I tried to keep in touch with you by your email address:lundm@chartemi.net but i couldn’t send it to you .It was failed.Can you give me your exact email address,please ?
        John Le Van Ho

  18. I’m lucky to remember my name let alone someone from back then outside my close group. If had a picture, might remember them.

  19. Norb:
    I got stuck with being pay officer (MACV Kontum HQ) during that time….so I probably paid you every month for several months. I left end of 1969.

    Did you know Hartley Coursen & Mike Harney? They might have moved from Kontum to DakTo after you left.

    Patrick Garland – 1Lt, G2 Air, MACV

    • Their names ring a bell. Did you know George Moose, Larry Dacey or Desker Campbell? All based in Kontum (city). Norb Weller

  20. I was on Team 41 based at Dakto District HQ on Hwy 14 about 2-3 k due north of Tan Canh. Seven of us advisors lived with Montagnards and advised RF’s and PF’s in tactical ops. I was 1LT with Artillery and Infantry mos’. Headhunts flew for us out of Kontum Province HQ. They had slicks and Cobras. I was there Dec 68-Dec 69. The shit hit the fan in our Montagnard and Viet villages many times during my year. Dien Binh (bridge blown), Kon Horing, Kon Honong, Toumorong, Dak Sut and others. Major Wayne Culp followed by Major Sam Starley were Dakto senior advisors to TuTa Bao. Anybody ever visit us? Did you write your name on the wall on the team house?
    Norb Weller

  21. I met Gary Biekirch in the late 70s He was working out of what we called the House on South Ave in Rochester, NY, it was like a Vet Center. I was in a PTSD group there in the 80s, and Gary was the facilitator.

  22. The medic in the SF camp Gary biekrich got the MOH. That was a month of hell up there. Nah bro you can talk and share with us anytime.

  23. Gene, check out team 23 and 24 FB page
    macv tan cahn. Send a friend request so I can okay you. Send unit name and years when u first post. Your unit gave a lot of rides to us.

  24. Was not SF. Advisor with regular arvn out of tan cahn. We were about 20 of us US. On the 18th I was back at tan cahn getting resupply and replacements. Dinks hit the arvn artillery ammo dump with 122. I went back up in ca nw of the camp. Lz got hit hard with .51 mortars and rickyrifles. Rest of my unit came in next day. 1st week of may I took our recon platoon back to secure crash sites so graves registration could recover remains. Lot of choppers and AF caribous were shot down. One of the chopper units lost a few on ca to the hill north on around your crash date.

    • I knew those guys. Was in the 71st med evac with Don Summers. He had been shot multiple times. There was a SF guy in the bed next to me. Shot multiple times also. Never saw so much pain and suffering in my life. Wish I had learned his name but did not. One night we were hit with 122s and I put my mattress over him and held his hand. He kept telling me to get under my bed but I told him no if we die tonite we die togeather, Ill see you in heaven. I hope he made it home. Sorry sometimes I talk to much. Thanks Ben. I will check out those pages

  25. Gene thanks. All of us on the ground during that time were very grateful for you chopper guys. My Advisory Team with the 42nd ARVN Infantry regiment were all up and down that valley where dak seang was. Our home was at tan cahn just east of the old dak to airstrip.

    • Was an honor to work for you guys Ben. I know right where Tan Can is. You”re the first special forces guy I have run into from that fight and I”m really glad I did. I did 3 tours with the 119th. June 68 to may 70. Flew the FOB 2 missions staged out of Dak To in 68 and 69. Was at the seige of Ben Het in 69. Took the 4th ID into the Plie Trap in March 69. Lost our ass in there. I have been to every special forces camp in II corps and a few in I corps. Went to Leg Horn Laos a couple times droping off ammo and radios. I think I liked Mang Buc the most for the water falls and its seclusion. Best meal I had in Nam was at Poli Klieng just west of Kontum. You guys were amazing and have all my respect.

      • OK, I’ll bite (pun intended). Tell me more about this scrumptious meal in Polei Kleng. I remember eating egg flower soup and drinking Japanese whiskey with the ARVN Captain in charge out there, but have no recollection of a four star restaurant.

      • It sure beat the mess hall at Holloway and c rats. We were a taxi service for Lt. Col. Beckwith ( dont know if it was Charlie) . Would have been @ July August 68. Seems he had to visit every SF camp in II corps. I do remember the chow was good and tasty. Maybe they put the hog on for him?

    • Yes Ben outside the wire at Dak Seang. We were talking to call sign krumpet kilo. Ours was croc 6. 119th AHC. Crocodile guns.

  26. Was shot down 18 April 1970 and crashed just outside the wire. All 4 crewmen wounded. Gooks had a 51 set up and got us. Wing man dropped his pods and came in and got us after a good gun fight

  27. Does anyone remember a gunship going down in August of ’69 across the road from Dak To feul dump, and burning. there were 3 killed, the pilot and 2 convoy drivers who just wanted a joy ride. The pilot was hotdogging and clipped the tail rotor on some wires, it went down in a ball of fire, the Peter was ejected into some concertina and survived with some burns. A couple of my team mates and I had the unfortunate duty to help extract the bodies the next day after wreckage cooled.

  28. MACV Sgt. Louis E. Janca died on October 1970 due to “friendly fire”. Gloria Redlin who was with him also died. There are rumors about that the RVN soldier who killed both received a bounty for the killings. Gloria was a very nice woman, I did visit her house downtown Kontum.

    • I was at tan canh and we heard about the incident. There was questions about why they were out riding a scooter that late. Also we heard the rumor started about the bounty. On another site a guy remembers the bounty was US 20K. Hard to understand why such a high or a bounty period on the SGT. What made him so important? If I recall that 20K was many times higher than even the one on COL Day. I think (saw it happen before) the bounty rumor was created to make an obvious friendly fire death appear to be more of a “in line of duty” action. There were US personnel making a much larger impact in the AO who would have been better targets. A tragic loss indeed as a result of a terrible incident with no other implications. imho!

  29. John years I was told by a guy who was at dak to airstrip with arvn 14th cav that a Hugh mushroom cloud an a large ball of fire went up and he actually thought the nva hit us with a small nuke. He also said all the resulting secondaries was the greatest fireworks display he ever saw. I jokingly told him I’m glad he enjoyed the show. We sure didnt.LOL

  30. By the way just last week I found on the Internet the USAF. After action report on dak seang. Will try to figure out how to post it here or can email it to someone who knows how.

  31. John do u recall the 122 hitting the ammo dump in tan canh middle of April 70 during dak seang. My bn. Had just got in after being extracted for refit and resupply. We all spent hours in the toc bunker while the shrapnel rained down. My bunk had a 5 lb. Piece of steel that came right thru the roof. Ltc. Hai came to get Stearns to walk the compound with him in the middle of it, no way was Stearns leaving the bunker.LOL. couple arvn arty guys killed and couple prisoners in the stockade. By the way guys in the after action report about dak seang the 42nd was considered a “Hardship Tour” for the arvn assigned there. LOL what did that make it for us based there.

    • Yes I recall. Was in the bunker. Explosions went on for hours maybe until morning. Greatest drum symphony I have ever heard.

  32. Randy:

    We (AVVBA – Atlanta Vietnam Veterans Business Association) did a memorial in Atlanta for Patrick Yeager, a Caribou pilot that was shot down in the Battle in Dak Seang.

    Go on our website – http://www.AVVBA.org – to see his memorial & 26 others we have done since 1987.

    Patrick Garland

  33. I meant soc. Sec. Numbers. I have the after action report too. Lost franks contact info. We were there together. I was with 4/42nd.

  34. Ben,
    I would like a copy of those rosters. Not sure I understand what you said about the problem with many having son on them.

    I have a copy of the Battle of Dak Seang after action report April- May 1970. Secret -declassified in 1982. 106 pages. Frank DeLong got it for me a few yeras ago. Brings back a lot of memories.

  35. I will get them scanned this weekend and email to any wants them and post here as pics. Problem though many have son on them. Any suggestions.

  36. I was assigned to Team 41 a seven man MACV at Dak To District HQ on Hwy 14 north of Tan Canh from Dec68-Dec 69. District Chief was Major Bao and District Senior Advisor was Major Wayne Culp.

  37. BTW, Art Elliott and I were in the same Bn, 1/39 IN, around 67-68 before we went to RVN, and I used to call him in CO until a few years ago when he didn’t remember me.

  38. You’re doing great detective work, Ben; thanks. Can you post the rosters here so we may also see them; I would be interested in seeing them to refresh my memory about who was there?

  39. I have located several rosters covering the advisors in Pleiku and Kontum provinces. Covers years 68-early 71 deros dates. Roster reflects actual positions at the time roster was produced.

  40. Oh God. My bn was at the foot of the hill north east of the SF camp trying to fight up to rescue art elliott. We could not get across the small river as the dinks had it covered with multiple mgs. I last spoke on the radio that day and art said they were going to try and break out to the southeast. He was captured
    I spoke with him a few years back after I tracked him down he has since passed. I still grieve for him and feel guilt that we could not get to them that day.

  41. Yeah, the team thing is kind of sketchy and I’m hard pressed to recall what all Tm 41 encompassed. I’m thinking it was KonTum Province and KonTum and DakTo Districts Advisors including the MAT Teams.

  42. Hi, I’m Joel Gartenberg (CPT), Tm 24, Sr. Advisor 2/42 Regt Tanh Canh Aug 68 till o/a Mar 69 when I moved to 24 STZ in Kontum to serve as G-3 Air advisor. Worked in Tanh Canh with MAJ Milt Goo, CPT Jess Miller, LTC Jack Daniel, LTC Dick Littlefield, LT Charlie Cade, and others, More later..

    • Welcome Home. I was at tan cahn jan70 to jan 71. Sr adv with 4/42. It had been renamed team 23 for the 42nd regt. Team 24 was just the Kontum base advisors to the 24th STZ.

  43. Tv bit listing major battles in US history just ran and had Dakto – so many old memories &emotions erupted as result. I was Dist intel advisor 71-72.

  44. I was at tan canh the whole tour did not have a assignment in the rear so don’t know about any explosion down south.

  45. How many ammo dumps explosions? The explosion I was talking about was not far from the date Sgt. Louis Emil Janca and Goria Redlin died on Oct. 1970. I am completely sure because by that time I was moved from a barrack where the post office was to another barrack across the street. I was sit barefoot at the top of the stairs when the explosion occurred. My compound was about 500 yards from the explosion and both compounds were connected by a dirt road.

  46. I had just returned to the 24th STZ TOC at Tan Canh when the rockets hit the ammunition supply point on April 17th. It was completely destroyed and the secondary explosions seemed to last forever. The After Action Report concluded that the the area lacked the required protective berms and that the ASP was located too close to warehouse and Class III storage areas which were also completely destroyed.

    • Randy I was in from the field and at Tan Canh that day. An Advisor with the 14th Cav over at dak to airstrip saw the explosion and told me he thought the dinks had used some kind of new weapon and he was sure the entire base was blown up and gone. He said the fireball and smoke cloud resembled a mini Nuke explosion. We must have run into each other. At least at meals or in the team house. I will never forget LTC HAI coming into the TOC bunker and wanting LTC Stearns, my boss the Regt. SR. Advisor to go with him to the ammo dump. I dont blame Stearns for not going. Stuff was raining down all over the compound. LTC. Hai was fearless, a great guy in my book. One day I will tell the story of going on my R&R to Bangkok and bringing back over $5k in diamonds to him. Hey years ago I read on the internet on some macv advisor forum that it turns out a high ranking ARVN officer at Kontum with 24th STZ was a VC spy and ended up with a high ranking job in Saigon after the collapse in 75. He was feeding our ops plans and all other units too to the NVA.

  47. Mid April 70 at 4 2nd arvn rest he at tan canh.damn lucky dinks hit us with couple dozen 122s. This was during the battle of dak seang. My bn was in palace guard for refit and resupply. We spent a few hours in the toc bunker until all the secondary stopped. The arvn ammo dump was hit. Our team quarters was full oh holes from falling steel. I found a 10 pound chunk right in the center of my bunk. Was a fun time.

  48. Does anyone was in Kontum by the end of 1970 or the beginning of 1971 when the huge ammo dump explosion? I was with the 175th Signal Company and the sand bags were falling as rain around me. the explosion was in the 24th ARVN STZ

    • I was there. In the tactical bunker when the ammo dump was hit. Sounded like kettle and snare drum symphony. Maj Fowler. G3 ops was in the bunker and we could do nothing. A FAC or helo pilot reported the NVA coming down from the hills with flashlights on as in procession, undisturbed. A Huey on the helio pad looked like Swiss Cheese in the morning. I don’t recall any US casualties, but many ARVN and dependents were killed. Cpt John Avila

  49. Ben:

    Was in Kontum ”68-’69 w/TM24, MI-G2 Air Officer. Hartley Coursen was in our office. We are still friends and email each other. He lives in Ohio.

    (Lt) Patrick Garland

  50. Anyone know what happened to the three companies of the Highland Scout Companies? Their compound was down the street from the 24th STZ HQ and the ARVN Hospital. Any info would be appreciated. I was an advisor to this wonderful soldiers and have wondered what happened to them since I left in Dec 1968.

  51. Randy, you came in right after I left. I will email Hartley “Kit” Coursen to tell him to visit the site & reply to you.

    Patrick

  52. Hi Patrick,

    Sorry to hear about Harney. Glad you’re well. I’m living in Seattle and retiring from the IT world this January. I have a group picture of the usual suspects when Abe left Kontum. Harney’s back is facing, the group may include you?

    I can’t attach in this reply. If you want a copy send an e-mail to mmagnan@aol.com

    Mike

  53. Mike:

    Harney passed away a couple years ago. Coursen is in Ohio & doing well. I am in Atlanta & mostly retired. I left Kontum in Nov. ’69. Harney went up to DakTo & Coursen stayed in Kontum. Those were the days! Hope all is well with you.

    Patrick

  54. I remember Mike Harney in G-2, a Hawaiian Irish guy, kinda crazy (& who wasn’t) and I kind of remember you Lt. Garland. I was in G-3, took over for Abe Elizardo when he DEROSED. I left in Jan 70, just after Col Miller KIA in early Dec 1969. Hope your life has been well since…

    • Hello all – I was G-3 Air from December 1969-November 1970. Remember having drinks with COL Miller the night before he was lost. Major Elliot, who was later a POW was my boss for awhile. Would like to get in contact with Coursen – lost his address on the way home.

      • I was just south of maj. Elliotts bn the day he was captured. My 4/42nd was trying to get through to them. His last radio message to me was “we are going to try and break out now” we carried him as MIA and never knew he was still alive and pow until years later. I took part of recon company back into the area after the dinks went back to cambode searching and recovering many arvn and US bodies. Did not find him. He passed away back in 2012 according to the POW/MIA website.

      • Art Elliot was my Bn XO in Germany and I stayed in touch with him periodically a few years ago. I believe he lived in CO. Did I read correctly in a post that he passed away?
        My Regimental Senior Advisor in 1968 in Tanh Canh, Jack Daniel, who I categorize as a soldier’s soldier, passed away about two weeks ago in Knoxville. -:((((

  55. Started out with Tm 24 in July of 68 and at some point we at Kontum District transitioned to Tm 41. Spent the year as Kontum District Deputy Senior Advisor west of Kontum.

    Rick Nelson

    • Rich,
      I was assigned to MACV Team 41 in Dak To District from Dec ’68 to Dec ’69. We were based about 2-3k north of Tan Canh up highway 14. We were a team of seven. Major Wayne L. Culp was our District Senior advisor followed by Major Sam Starley. Our Province Senior adviser was Col. Wahlen followed by Col. Dillard. We trained and lead Ruff-Puffs (Regional & Popular Forces) on numerous operations. We had about 25 villages in our A/O. I was 1LT with an infantry and artillery mos.
      I was there from Dec ’68 to Dec ’69.
      Norbert Weller

      • It’s been a long time. I only made it up to Dak To a couple of times but talked to you guys on the radio a fair amount. No doubt we’ve met. Pictures would help for sure. I have a whole box of them in storage to go through so now that I’m actually retired I guess I’d better get to it. Happy 4th of July. We still have the traditional small town doings out here in Steilacoom, WA with parade, street fair, beer garden and fireworks over the sound. Wish you the best,

        Rick

      • Norbert,
        Enjoyed visiting with you when you were at Fort Sill in March 2014 at the OCS Hall of Fame. Can’t remember if we talked in any detail about our MACV time. I arrived in Kontum Nov ’69. Memory bank is overdrawn sometimes. Randy Dunham

  56. 1st Lt Garland, MACV Tm 24, Kontum Province, G-2 Air Advisor – 1968-1969
    Hartley Coursen & Mike Harney were advisors also in our office.

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