Team 49 Xuan Loc

MACV Team 49 – Xuan Loc

This Page is intended for the discussion of the Military Assistance Command Vietnam Team 49 located in Xuan Loc.

55 thoughts on “Team 49 Xuan Loc

  1. There were 2 advisory teams in Xuan Loc. One was Team 49 was a province team consisting of a headquarters… 3 district team and 4 to 12 MAT teams……
    There were others in that compound ……FAC team and others that had just a few members…
    .Now that was in 1969….. sometime before that both teams were just one team and then they divided the one team into two as the mission expanded and more advisors were sent to Vietnam.

    • Thanks. In 65 and 66 I think there was one team there for the arvn’s. Then there was the light airplane for reconn. i believe there was only at most 50 americans there in xuan loc. Probably closer to 30.
      Doug Sichler

  2. Can anyone on the Team 49 site tell me what MACV Teams where in the Xuan Loc area in late 1965 and till April 1966?
    I was in the 232 signal co. TDY to a MACV Team at Xuan Loc in late 65 to 4/66. I was a radio teletype operator there. Had wood sided tent barracks and pcp airstrip across the road from compound. We had vietnamese for cleaning tents and doing laundry and cooking mess. We had a BBQ 1 day a week where you could cook your own steak Of all payed so much a month the services. We had a local barber there to cut hair and massage your your head. We vuilt a small bar/canteen there. Martha Raye performed there when I was there. All I want to know is what team was it and what exact location was it at. The airstrip could land up c-119 and there was arty setup at one end of the strip and in 1966 they got 175’s and almost knocked you out of bed when they went off on the what they called H&I fire.
    Thanks, The full bird colonel in charge was a nice guy. The rules were no saluting on compound, We built a cinder block enclosure for the radio teletype room in 1966 or late 65, with a steel door.
    Doug Sichler SP-4

  3. Hi Team 49ers. I was a District Senior Advisor down in Dinh Tuong Province (Teams 75 and 66) in 1966 and 1968-1969). I met a Major Ronald L. Beckett back in 1970-71 when we were both college ROTC instructors is 1st Army Region. We both spoke of writing books on our experiences for family and our soldiers’ legacy assigned to our teams. He was in Dinh Quan District and his book “Jack of All Trades” was just published last month by Stackpole Books and is a good read and mentions a number of men on this site. He died back in 1999 I believe and you can probably find his obit on the West Point Class of 1961 website. Good guy from what I remember. My book, “You Ain’t Nothing but a Swamp Rat” comes out next month and is really a memoir of my life with many comments by my brave soldiers who were assigned to my two teams–not all complimentary but true I must admit. It is more an heirloom for my progeny and those of my soldiers. Beckett’s book is much better and you can get it on Amazon Books for about $17.00 +. Really explains District Advisor role well and quite humorous too. I knew Major Ron Finnerty who he replaced (deceased) and Major Roger V. Havercroft who was DSA in Kiem Tam (still alive in GA. I think–hope to get up with him–Class of 1962 West Point. Good luck to you all and be proud of the effort so much of you undertook to bring peace and prosperity to Vietnam. I have Vietnamese friends who say we in many ways brought such through the modernizing of their economy, agriculture, cultural attitudes, and even our “can do” spirit. The South just rebelled against collectivization and the North Viets had to adjust to the new attitudes of the South Viets.

    • I was under Maj. Beckett’s district command (first as Asst. Advisor on Capt. Harris’s MAT 98 Team at Laghna Bridge)….and later when I had the team in Phoung Lam….great guy, so humorous.. Ordered his book. Hope he has the story about the beautiful VC girl who gave herself up and he sat his interpreter named Cho down in front of her to question her, but Cho was so infatuated with her beauty that he would not say a word. Maj. Becket was about to strangle the guy. He ended up having to get another interpreter form a nearby U.S. unit !!

    • Looking for Team 49 members from 1968-1971 Robert J Hanes from New York, and John Fogan from Ohio..anyone with information on these two men please contact me at I’m not computer smart but my wife is and she is helping me to try and fine my army brothers

    • I’m Robert (Bob) Gaddis I was a member of Team 71 in Soc Trang from Oct 1970 to Oct 1971. I was an E-7 at the time serving as the Rural Development Cadre Advisor. I just finished reading Maj Ronald Beckett’s Book -Jack Of All Trades-. This is truly an outstanding work. I think it represents a great deal of the day to day interaction we all had with the Vietnamese. 1971 was my second tour and living and working with the Vietnamese saved my sanity. I came to understand that they were people like all others, trying to make their way through life doing the best they could for their family’s. I think often of the good folks I worked with and wonder at there fate, fearing the worst. Maj Beckett is at rest now. It would have been a privilege to have served with him.

    • The book about the District Senior Advisor’s experience titled, “You Ain’t Nothing But A SWAMP RAT” is available on the website of the Airborne and Special Operations Museum Foundation, Go to “Gift Shop” and hit on “On-Line Shopping” to see the now “Book of the Month” of the museum. All proceeds go to the museum and it needs them as Army funding has been cut. The book lauds the brave young advisors (E.M. and junior officers) who served under my command in 1966 and ’68-’69. They were the bravest men I knew in my 24 years service.

  4. Yes this is Lt. Reed. I sent you and email. Go ahead and call if it is not too expensive since you are over there. or else we can correspond via email. I know you are taking in the “cultural” sights !

  5. My name is John Gillham. I served on the Kiem Tan team until taking over MATIII-12. My tour exactly covered the fyear of 1969.The Major was Major Hovercroft (airborne Ranger/ west point grad} a humorless man Larry Parks was the Phoenix guy on that team and a great officer my address is

  6. I was team leader of MAT III-12 and am seeking information about LTC Joseph Scott. Traced him to a duty station up north.. but don’t have any more info if he is alive or what. He was a great commander and an honerable man. I have only a couple of photos of him.
    John Gillham

  7. Attn: Joseph Williams, Retired

    Not sure if other Adv Team records are there….you called Univ of Md and try to get to the reference dept and/or National Archives ll collection and ask.or the Univ of Md webside may get you into these archives……but a phone call would probably be best place to start.

  8. Not sure if other Adv Team records are there….you called Univ of Md and try to get to the reference dept and/or National Archives ll collection and ask.or the Univ of Md webside may get you into these archives……but a phone call would probably be best place to start.

  9. Hi Clark
    Thanks for that. It is possible that I was on that mission as I remember doing a hairy two helo lift with the 18th in tiger country.
    These snippets of info are what the historians are after so if you can expand on it or others it would be appreciated.
    Did you have any dealing with the irregulars at Xuan Loc Maj Puttnam was one US soldier I had contact with.
    Thanks Ray

  10. Thanks Tom
    We were attached to the 145CAB on several occasions.
    Appreciate any comments/contacts from anyone who remembers the EMUs.
    Thanks Ray

  11. Hi Thomas
    Thanks. I am aware of VHPA and also have had little success with their site.
    However if you come across anything concerning 135AHC EMUs /Taipans I would appreciate a heads up.
    Cheers Ray

  12. Hi
    My name is Ray(Beachball) Godfrey. I was an Australian Navy pilot with the 135AHC EMUs out of Blackhorse in 68. I flew a number of missions for a Mike Force/US Special Forces team based at Xuan Loc.
    Dose anyone remember a ex British Army officer who commanded the group. We also had another Australian Navy officer attached to the unit as a liaison officer David (Foxy) Cronin.
    I remember spending a boozy night at the camp with some of the team following a pretty hectic H&T mission.
    A. Do I have the right outfit?
    B. If so does anyone remember the EMUs and the chaps mentioned?
    C. Can anyone help me with locating records of this unit as I am writing memoirs for our museum.

    • Ray, I’m familiar with the 135th and the fact that they had Australian Nay pilots. I’m looking at a VHPA (Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association) directory and I do not see you or Cronin listed. My directory is dated 2009, which is about the time, I think, VHPA went digital and more listings could have been made that I am not aware of.. You might want to contact the VHPA to ensure they are up to date.

    • Ray Godfrey,
      I was the G-2 Air Advisor to the 18th ARVN Division from April – August 1968. I had problems getting US helicopters for a Vietnamese only LRRP insertion into War Zone D about June 1968, when the Australian Navy volunteered two slicks for the mission. I was coordinating in the C&C ship and had two gunships in support.
      The LRRP Team got in OK, but within about 10 minutes they were yelling over the radio to get out of the area. They had been discovered by a large force and requested immediate extraction. Gunships went in to suppress the enemy fire and the Aussie Navy went back and got of them out without casualties.
      Landing back at Xuan Loc, I went to apologize to the Aussie pilot and found him with a huge smile telling me that this mission was the most excitement he had had in Vietnam and wanted to know when we could go again.
      i also flew a number of FireFly and People Sniffer missions during this time.

  13. Thanks for the reply. Army was rather loose with our SSN back then so I do not like to advertise this point…I have one roster dated Jan 70 that has all Advisor Team 49 personnel and SSN’s…….this is how I found Capt Hughes, Lt Gillham…

    • I fully concur ref SSN and the Army. I talked with my friend today (the one in possession of the gun) and he has LtG’s email and cell phone #. Hopefully he will receive a reply and we will have a positive conclusion. I will let you know, however some time will pass as I only see my friend at the shows. I should have gotten his cell. Oh well. He did tell me he is familiar with this site so he might chime in. Thanks again. Tom

    • I was CPT James R. Harris (Jim) with a MAT team out of Xuan Loc in 1969. We were with a RF unit that guarded a bridge in a small hamlet. Were you the 1LT assigned to my 5 man team?

      • I commanded the MAT team at the village of Cam Tan. Everything we did went wrong there. Several other advisors on neighboring teams were mysteriously killed-lots of problems with our Vietnamese counterparts. Do you remember that?. Sometime around early 1969.

        • CPT James R. Harris,
          Don’t want to butt in or your comments to another person. I was the MATIII-12. We were at Binh Hoa/Tuc Trung area compound with the 122th RF Co. Also was up at Phu Lam for a couple of weeks. Have photos of the Binh Hoa area and some of the Phu Lam compound… do you have any photo that I might want … perhaps we can swap photos.
          John Gillham

  14. Tom Harney:
    Maybe a long shot..but Univ of Maryland Nat’l Archives II, College Park, MD has something like 50 boxes of Advisor Team 49 records. I have never seen these but the public has access. Capt. James Hughes the Phoenix Coordinator in 69-70′ has seen them. The Monthly Personnel Status Reports for Adv Team 49 are in these boxes and they have social security numbers listed next to our names. A good PI can find Hughes.

  15. Tom Harney, CW4 Ret. here. Flew in and around Xuan Loc with the 187th AHC (Crusaders) and 190th AHC (Spartans) in 69/70. A gun show friend of mine has a Chicom Tok presented to Patrick Hughes of Team 49, later of DIA. My friend would like to contact Hughes if possible. Standing by.

    • Come on. I picked up the 5 SF HQ mission going across the border early in 1970. No one wanted the mission because it was ash and trash, take the mail and the chaplain on Sunday. Ton le Chon, etc. I had a lot of time in that AO. It got more interesting as time went on. Cam Bot.
      I’m hoping to reunite the pistol to its owner. Did another MACV mission with the 190th resulting in several VC kia from a living position along a major canal 1970. Stoneman became a friend in 1989. Admins can delete if you want. I would like to reunite this pistol with its owner.

  16. My name is John Gillham. I was the team leader of MAT III-12 during 1969. Was with 133rd RF company just outside of Binh Hoa Village. LTC Scott was the PSA when I was there. My email is

  17. I served on Cords Team 49 from December 1970 until October 1971. I was the S-1 advisor and ran the Class V for the teams. Anyone out there?
    John Schmidt III

  18. I was Air Force buck sgt radio operator working with Kenny FAC’s early 1970 for a month then assigned to MACV 48 Ham Tan. I was in Xuan Loc when the barber was found VC with drawings of the compound. One of many bullets dodged 70-71. Used to hitch chopper rides with Air Cav for fun at the King Hotel in Saigon. Thanks guys. Proud to serve with you all.

  19. To Wayne Schaffer;

    Call me at 813-886-2223. I have a roster from Advisor Group 49 for Jan 20, 1970. It has info about Robert Haynes that might help you find him. I was Sr Adv MAT-98 with Sgts Cooper, McSmith, Hughes, Holiday from June 69-Feb 70.

  20. My name is John Gillham. I was on MAT III-12 during the exact year of 1969. Served with Lt. Diaz, SFC Cruiz, SSgt. Rice, Sgt. Johnson and a SSgt and later SFC HAYNES . SFC Haynes was a medic. Is this the man you are looking for? What Job did you do on Team 49 ?

  21. Looking for information on veterans from Team 49 from 1968 to 1971. Name is Wayne Schaffer looking for Robert J. Haynes from NY.

  22. I was Sr Advisor MAT 98 Adv Team 49 from June 69-Feb 70..taking over from Capt Harris who rotated out in Aug 69′. On the team was Sgt Cooper, Sgt McSmith, Sgt Hughes….unfortunately all those guys have passed on. We operated out of Langha Bridge, Xuan Loc, Soui Cat, Thrung Hieu, Phoung Lam. Major Beckett was Dist Cmdr out of Dinh Quan.

    • Hi David. I am that Capt Harris who was the team leader who rotated in Aug 69. I am now retired from the USAR and civil service and staying in Thailand for a few months. Life has been good for me and still is. It would be great to hear from you.

  23. to Ken Johnson; I was close friend Lt. Larry Parks which held the same job before you. I have a lot of photos of your old team house and the volcanic caldera on which it was located. Another part of the rim of this old volcano was occupied by district/sub-sector headquarters. Down in the bowl was the officers dependents quarter for some 18th ARVN officers, if memory serves. Did you know any of the members of MAT III-12 ? I can’t find any of them. My email is My cell is 501 412 8709.

  24. My name is John Gillham. I served first on Kiem Tan District Team for some weeks (MAJ Hovercroft). Then was assigned a leader of MAT III-12, serving at the triangular fort just west of Binh Hoa VILAGE on QL20. Then we were sent to Phu Lam for a few weeks… then back to the Binh Hoa fort. I served with the bravest & most competent in the US ARMY…. LT Raymond Diaz, SFC Cruz, SFC Haynes and SGT Johnson (and SFC Ray Rice from the Kiem Tan team). I was honored to serve with such men and felt humble in their presence as they were game for anything….”fear did not enter into their thinking”

  25. Follow up and more info to my previous post… Staff Sergeant Starkovich, October 1971, served as Light Weapons Infantry Advisor, MAT 32, CORDS Advisory Team 49, Long Khanh Province.

    Later, Staff Sergeant Starkovich, May 1972, served as Operations and Training NCO, CORDS Advisory Team 49, Long Khanh Province.

  26. Does anyone know John Starkovich? He was my dad and I have some very good 8mm movies of his I think members of the team would be interested to see. He passed away in 2012. Happy to share what I have. I don’t have the awards in front of me but I think he was a Sgt and assigned about 1971-1972.

    • john starkovich was a staff sergeant on mat III-32. he was a good soldier and a brave man. he won an arcom with a valor device for an action in a rubber plantation. we had two lieutenants and three sergeants. ssgt starkovich was the light weapons specialist. sfc richard l. thompson was the heavy wpns specialist and sfc dale erb was our medical advisor. sfc erb was shot in the leg and was replaced by another medic, but i cannot recall his name. my name is gregory olney. i was the sr advisor and 1lt donald lundman was the asst advisor. lt lundman was wounded in the groin by a vc claymore mine and was replaced by 1lt william macdonald.

  27. I was the Phoenix Advisor at Team 49’s Kiem Tan District unit from September 1970 until March 1971. The District Senior Advisor was a Major when I first arrived and he was replaced by a State Department civilian about a month or two later.

  28. Located in Xuan Loc, Capital of Long Khanh Province. I served the 1st Cav. Div (Airmobile) as Liaison officer for Fire Support Coordination between June -Sept 1971.

    • I served on CORDS Team 49 from March 1970 until November 1971. While you were with Team 49 David it was myself and Capt. James Chesnutt, who was replaced by Capt. Gilbert Reilly, in the S2 section with Vietnamese Major Xa. I was a Sp5 then. Your name seems familiar but I can’t picture you. I’m sure we met.

      • I happened to come across this site just now. I’ve always wondered about some of the guys that I served with in Vietnam. Barry, I shared a room with you for awhile while with Adv Team 49. I remember you regularly doing exercises before going to bed or first thing in the morning. I can’t remember which. Anyway, I was the S2 clerk and typed out the necessary reports. I also distributed mail/films via choppers to other team members. I have photos of both you and Cpt Chesnutt. My name is Tim Vosnos. I recently retired from American Airlines. It would be really nice to know how you are doing.
        My address..276 Presidential Lane
        Elgin, Illinois 60123

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