Team 98 Bien Hoa

MACV Team 98 – Bien Hoa.

This Page is intended for the discussion of the Military Assistance Command Vietnam Team 98 located in Bien Hoa.

276 thoughts on “Team 98 Bien Hoa

  1. Ed, I saw your response to Dave Naugle about responding to an ambush with your 60cal machine gun that was mounted on a jeep. I believe that was the ambush that me and another Sgt. was in the middle of, in Nhon Trach District around June 69. We were with MAT 45 and got caught in a ambush with a revolution development by the Vietcong near our outpost. We were pinned down on the side of the road with bullets hitting some trees behind us, then your Jeep appear down the end of the road with a 60cal machinegun. Apparently that scare off the Vietcong because they disengage with the fire fight. We swept the area and pick up a wounded south Vietnam solider and took him to our outpost for a dustoff. MSG Robinson,Retired USA, Team 45, Mar 69 to Apr 70

    • If memory serves me, I must have arrived just after you left. Were you in an outpost on the East side of the district? Was Frambs your medic? We drove that jeep with the M60 for quite a while. I remember a dusk run up to the main road to pick up a newbie and more to assure ourselves than actually frighten anyone we would periodically fire off a burst.

      • I’ll have you know we “appropriated” that jeep machine gun mount from a Military Police compound. I can’t recall where we got the retrofitted butterfly trigger assembly (maybe the same place?) for the M60, but it was very cool, and the envy of all. Squeezing off rounds without shouldering the weapon was very TV Desert Rat, if memory serves. Oh, to be 22 again? On second thought, once was enough. 😉

    • The timing and location sounds right, Lt Berls only arrived in May, I was off R&R-omg it in July (back home in August), so June ’69 sounds very reasonable.
      Lt Berls was new in-country, and worried I’d ruin his hearing if I opened up with the M60. Truth be told, I almost fired on one of the friendlies, but hesitated seeing his uniform, or recognizing him…I can’t recall which. That was Berls first exposure to hostilities I believe.
      It was all so long ago, I can’t believe it’ll be 50 years next year, that arrived in Vietnam. Be well. Thanks for reaching out.
      Ed

      • Ed, the ambush was on the 13 June 69,in the Nhon Trach District. Mat 45 was attached to the 32nd Regional Forces. I was the Medical Advisor with MAT 45. The firefight was a little crazy, because it was hard to determine who was the good guys and who was the bad guys because me and the other Sgt was in the middle with South Vietnam behind us because I heard some M-79 rounds hitting the trees behind us. Take care, MSG Robinson, Retired, USA

        • You sound very precise; did you keep a journal? I wish I had taken notes at the time, my memory gets fuzzier with the passing of time.
          I do recall, with humor, that one of my first outings with MAT 9 involved a joint US & ARVN operation. I took the left flank of my ARVN’s. (RF’s?) with American troops just to my left, on a sweep through a rubber plantation. Sure enough we walked into enemy, all of us firing straight ahead. Unfortunately, I was carrying an AK47, with double banana clip. I realized not only taking fire from in front, but fire from my left flank. Americans were firing on AK47 sound…my weapon. Needless to say I stopped firing, vowing never to carry that weapon with US troops participating. Ha, it’s funny now…not so much then.

          • Ed, I did not keep a record of combat experience, I remember things that happen to me. It is probably why I have 100 percent PTSD, because of Vietnam. The memory never goes away. Take Care, Yes this was nearly 50 years ago. MSG Robinson,Retired,USA

            • I’m so sorry your memory is photographic; I much prefer my sieve like recollections. I’ve actually found humor in much that transpired, and trust me, it wasn’t all funny. I wish you well managing the PTSD, it must be difficult. Best regards.

              Ed

              • Thank you Ed for your response. Responding to my fellow brothers is one way to cope with my Vietnam experiences and I wish you the best. MSG Robinson,Retired,USA

                • Anytime you want an online chat, a bit of levity, whatever makes you feel better, reach out to any of us you’ve befriended years ago, or just recently. I’ve found the Army fraturnity very understanding and generous. We all shared a common experience most folks can’t understand.
                  I’ve mentioned this elsewhere, but it bears repeating; a good friend told me he now knew what Vietnam service was like, after he saw the movie Platoon when it was first released. I politely told him “no, you simply saw a film.” He meant well, but you and I grasp the distinction. Be well.

                  Ed

                  • Thanks Ed for the reach out, one veteran to another. I believe that only those that experience combat, understands each other. I also do Group Therapy with veterans. Take Care, MSG Robinson

        • Leonard, Where did that ambush occur in Nhon Trach. I recall the Catholic Villages and the desolate part of the District on the east and the district offices on the north side. I didn’t arrive in Vietnam till September 1969 so I missed all of the excitement.

          • Dave, the ambush was between the Catholic Village and Long Thanh. Our, outpost was located just as you leave the hamlet towards the District Hqs in Long Thanh. There was a open area near a cemetery and a small PF outpost and a small Pagoda , this is the area that we were ambush. I remember using the Pagoda door to put the revolution development wounded solider on the door, and we took him to our outpost for a dustoff. He was shot in the back. On our way to the outpost, a couple of drunk RF soldiers on their Honda came around the bend of the road and ran into us. They were too drunk to get hurt. We ended up paying for the damage Honda. MSG Robinson, Retired, USA

            • Leonard, what you describe I think is a different place than where Ed and I made the now famous rat patrol run where Ed did not destroy my hearing. Thank you, brother. Same road, but further east than the Nhon Trach HQ area. Sounds like a similiar things you experienced only near a village called Pho Hoi. The MAT team at Pho Hoi was always getting hammered and MAT -9 did lots of ops in that area before going down south to Vung Gam. Not a friendly area. I recall the MAT team at Pho Hoi had a large (and I mean large) starlight scope mounted on their berm where you could see VC lighting cigarettes at night in the distance. The RF CO always said not fire at the cigarette smokers because it would be responded by mortar fire. I hated that place.

              • You officers had the maps Dick; I rarely knew where I was at any time…save on Tu Do Street, Saigon…with one of my NCO budddies. Ha. Those all access passes we carried were a Godsend!

              • Dick, since you mention it, it was Pho Hoi. This outpost was constantly in contact with the enemy. We ran a operation, sweeping the area around Pho Hoi and found a active Vietcong firebase. The Vietcong had a elaborate bunker system, a small cemetery and cooking area. They probably had a tunnel system. We saw that the camp was being used with some of the cooking areas, looking like there was recent fire. In the bunkers I saw medical supplies that I used in Pho Hoi on some Med Caps with the locals. We figure the Vietcong went underground because they were informed by the locals. We made a note of the location of this camp on our map, so the we could called in arterially after we left the location. We also sent in mortar rounds in this area in the evening, when we thought the Vietcong were chowing down. When we did that we also receive incoming rounds. This is the same area that me and SFC Bryant went on an ambush outside the outpost with a RF squad and ambush a squad of Viet Cong coming down a trail, heading to Pho Hoi. We killed one Vietcong. SFC Bryant and I, had to drag his body to our outpost, so that his family could pick him up and of course we had a body count. This outpost was constantly being mortar and we were very active in fighting the Vietcong. Take care Dick, MSG Robinson,Retired, USA

  2. I was in Bien Hoa MAVC team 98 under command of Major Beno L. English 1970. Are there any other team members monitoring this communication.
    W.Huel
    Sergeant First Class
    US Army Intelligence

  3. Does anyone know how to contact members of team 98 in Bien Hoa from last half of 1966 through first half of 1967?

  4. We must have been very persuasive in our trades, because foodstuffs were always available. It was somewhat more difficult getting machine gun mounts for our jeeps, but that and butterfly trigger mounts for two M60 guns was also acquired. I kick myself for trading away my last NVA knockoff when leaving for home. I got a nice Air Force duffle in exchange, but would have preferred the flag instead. I remain convinced somewhere, someone, is embellishing their duty tour experience with one of my fake battle flags. Ha…!
    Have a great Memorial Day weekend.

    • Cpt Don Streicher, MAT team lead and district military in Nhon Trach. Late 68ish to April 1970. says:

      We got food easily too, although we could often get it without a trade because the regular units felt sorry for us. I remember getting a bigggg can of dehydrated shrimp once and having shrimp for a week or two. After I got to know one of the helicopter maintenance groups in Bien Hoa (got my miniguns and parts from them) I even got offered a helicopter if I would trade a 2 1/2! What a 5 man infantry team would do to operate and maintain a helicopter I have no clue. They also offered me a 20 mm Vulcan and I turned it down because I didn’t want to be firing explosive bullets through our barb wire. Got construction materials from all over. Got all the ammo I could use from the depot that people turned it into – even got 40 mm GL rounds that we never had in the 101st: tear gas, parachute flares, star clusters. We got out 50 cal and our 60 mm mortar from the weapons place people turned broken stuff into – they assembled working ones from several damaged ones.

      All that changed around in 1970: some idiot tried selling a minigun on the black market and the helo unit had to tighten up, a civilian stopped me with with a trailer of spookiy flares we used as perimeter flares and was upset I was taking condemned lot flares (didn’t care that I had no intention of dropping them from anything). That shut down our access to munitions and explosives. There was vehicle amnesty day and all the teams had to turn in their excess weapons :>).

      • Yikes, you were armed to the teeth. Weapons were plentiful the year before (my stint), as was defense supplies for our RF/PF assignments. Scrounging became an art form that we seemed to perform well. In the spirit of full disclosure, our Vietnamese interpreter had access to ’50’s era “French, adult” black & white films. We’d loan a few for a week to a mess Sargent, who’d turn his dining facility into an after hours movie hall (for a fee, we assumed), in exchange for us taking whatever foodstuffs we wanted. Soldiers in war zones are some of the most resourceful people on earth. Ha…!

        • Back in ’68 – ’69, I learned scrounging to an art form. Captured weapons, “NVA flags” bartered for MRE’s, ammunition and even an MP ARVN Colonel’s jeep. Unfortunately, as for the latter, US Army MP’s came to collect it and returned it to the ARVN Colonel  Warren Barshes (1st Lt., MAT 30C, Team 98) 

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  5. Jeff: I’ll keep your request on file, never fear. Hopefully, you boys will at least be able to make the premiere. I can promise there won’t be a longer limo than yours in the queue.

  6. Tebo: The screenplay is entitled “Our War” and, naturally, chronicles a MAT – warts and all. My agent is just now starting to shop it and it’s getting a fair amount of buzz due to it being a story of the war that has really never been explored. I’ll let you know if/when it gets teed up.

    • Bill – I want to play Tebo Wells, man of mystery and soldier of fortune! I can start PT as soon as you can confirm the role. Oh, not available in April, travel plans for Bhutan, Tibet and Nepal.

      Nilsson

  7. Tebo Wells – talk about some strange twists of fate. I too came upon this site inadvertently…a link from my OCS class referenced it and I couldn’t help but look about. You and Huddleston, as well as Jackson have come up in any number of conversations over the years – “what do you suppose ever happened to…..?” Good to know.
    Now for a strange coincidence, I live outside of Punta Gorda, FL, a small fishing community called Pirate Harbor, and our home is at the very end of “Treasure Island Boulevard” looking out over Charlotte Harbor and on to the Gulf.

    • After getting out, I went to grad school at LSU and then to work for Ford. They sent me to law school. I worked for several companies in Michigan, Illinois, Switzerland and Wisconsin for 35 years. When I retired, my wife said “I don’t know about you, but I’m going where snow will never touch my butt again.” We looked at a bunch of places and ended up on the beach on Treasure Island. We spend the summers in Wisconsin on the St. Croix River near Minneapolis, MN. Life is good!

      My mother-in-law was from Punta Gorda.

  8. Nice to hear from you, Tebo. Don’t know about Huddleston or Slick, but I used Huddleston’s name for a Sergeant in my VN screenplay. Too good a character and name to pass up.

  9. Jeff:

    Sounds like you’ve found your Nirvana. Great. I’m still working because at some point I’ll run out of stories to tell. I have a VN feature script, based loosely on our experiences that is getting some notice. Nobody knows the story of the MATs but us. I’ll let you know if it gets teed up.

    All best,
    Bill

  10. Bill Bently – after Vietnam I spent some time in Ct, then Pa, and finally we have settled in FL. I note that you have been writing, something I have tried off and on without much success; ended up owning a commodity trading company and a bank outside of Phila and quit all at 60 for a home on the Gulf of Mexico. Life is good and I hope that the same applies to you. Interesting memories, or as we say about flying a private plane…hours of boredom punctuated by moments of pure terror.

  11. Jeff:

    I wasn’t there when you sold the truck. Doc told me about it later when I met him for dinner at the Continental Palace Hotel in Saigon. He most definitely had someone in the night. They were a perfect couple, Doc being about the size of your average VN. Tebo Wells! Right! How could I have forgotten that name? I have a great picture of him and me and he’s wearing his omnipresent shoulder holster. Where are you living now?

  12. Jeff:

    I didn’t know about SFC Stiles. Sorry to hear that. He was a damn good scrounger. Remember when he and I stole that deuce and a half and water trailer from Bearcat? I wanted to get it quickly, but Stiles convinced me to wait until the Thais had filled the water trailer and gassed up the truck.

  13. Robert, I was at Bein Hoa HQ from July 68 through May 69 as the S-4. I’m sorry I don’t recognize your name but 50 years later there is a lot I don’t remember.

  14. Dave Naugle – while you were in the French compound was there an NCO there who worked with the K-9 group? I’ve lost his name but he was a really great guy; were there two teams in the compound when you were there? we shared it with a second MAT.

    • Jeff Nilsson: I’ve thought of you many times over the years. My team leader on MAT 45, you kept me from fouling up too badly while I negotiated the learning curve of a newbie Asst. Team Leader. When I left 45 to take over MAT 41 in Tan Uyen I was ready, thanks to you, Doc Parker, and our other NCOs. There were definitely two MATs at Tan Tuy Ha when I first reported. The leader of the other MAT was a great guy who always wore a shoulder holster. Then, we moved to the jungle compound on the hill by ourselves where Forrest Garner was KIA when a VC mortar went through our team hooch roof while we were out on a “dangerous” mission that turned out to be a walk in the woods. I now live in Los Angeles where I’ve been a writer in movies and television for the past 35 years. Hope all is well with you & yours, Bill Bentley 1LT (ret.)

      • Bill Bently – most amazing! I just returned from a bicycle ride and the fresh air jogged my memory – the other team mas under Tebo Wells, a Gulf Coast native. We’re you with us when we sold the deuce and a half to the Vietnamese. General? Doc Parker was an interesting NCO, think he made a friend in the night. I have a great photo of us beside the water tank outside the hootch.

    • Jeff – –

      Dog handler was Sgt. Jackson.

      Hello to Jeff, Bill and Dave. I still use a shoe brush with Dave’s name carved in the handle.

      Saw this site while looking for something else.

      Where are you in FL Jeff? I’ve been on Treasure Island for almost nine years.

      Anyone know what happened to Sgt. Huddleston or Slick?

      My wife and I had dinner last night with a fellow OCS grad that was a MAT Team Leader in the Delta at the same time we were there. He’s the only person I’ve stayed in touch with.

  15. SSgt Ed Rutledge, Team 98 from 1/69-8/69 as small arms advisor. Served with a great bunch of guys for that half year. Two weeks before rotation stateside our interpreter warned me to take special care. He had learned NVA forces had issued a bounty ($200.00) on my head, for any local to cash in on, should the opportunity arrive. Sleeping with one eye open for two weeks is impossible. Anyone else have similar experience?

  16. Bill

    I don’t remember you but we must have crossed paths. I served in Nhon Trach from September 1969 to July 1970. Served primarily on MAT 9 in a triangularly shaped outpost next to a village named Vung Gam. Than we relocated upto the north staying in the old French compound.

  17. I’ve been hoping to connect with any who were on the team from August ’68 through September ’69. Spent the first 6 months in nhon trach where we lived on Vietnamese Ammo dump then transferred to team HQ in Bien Hoa.

  18. Does any one remember team 98 mat III team 42 or 93 or 95 , 42 blew a ambush on 23 nov 70 SE of Long Thanh against 33 VC & NVA . the team members were Cpt Fry, Lt Walsman, Sfc Salanis, Sfc Goings, Sfc Sandsrson and myself. I received Bronze Star w/V. Later moved to team 93 Than to 95 at Tran compond Was in County Sept 70 to Sept 71

  19. I was on team 42 mat 98 in long thanh in 70-71 My medic was SFC Gongs also SFC Salinas, Sfc Sanderson and Cpt Fry and a Lt. I can’t remember his name

    • Welcome to Team 98 Bien Hoa….I was with Team 98 and Mat 30C 1968 to 1969. I hope you and others can spread the word that this website is available to re-connect with each other

      Warren Barshes (1Lt)

      • Lt Barshes. I was in Bien Hoa Advisory Team 98 the same time as you 1968 and 1969. I ran administration when LTC Robert J Kirk was the CO.

        Sgt Gene Luke

  20. Comment from Ronald Rockwell. I served as the civilian Deputy District Senior Advisor in Nhon Trach from Juky 1967 to May 1968. I have written up this period in a bio. If anyone is interested, send me an email and I will forward it to you. I would also appreciate any input from those who have direct knowledge of this period in Nhon Trach. Email: ronmimirockwell@yahoo.com

  21. I was on team 98 in bien hoa in70-71 my brother and me were stationed together there(we are twins)and ilike to know if anybody remembers us

  22. Dick , was that the place assigned to bridge security, or am I confusing it with another assignment for our team? I seemed to recall one of the reprobate PF’s being local hero, having fought at Dien Bien Phu (so?)? Maybe not, I was with our team Jan-Aug, ’69…they were a blur, except for that CIA funded gig, which was really scary.

  23. Leighton: Great hearing from you again. Were you originally a Floridian? You should add to your profile that you served honorably in VN in the very difficult and dangerous position of PSDF Advisor, among other things, and did so admirably.

    • Dear Lee:

      While my family moved a bit when I was growing up (Florence, Alabama, Lakeland, Florida, and Virginia Beach, Virginia), most of my youth was spent in Lakeland, and that was my home of record when I was in the Army. It is my recollection that you grew up in Arcadia, and I know you majored in geology at UF. You may know that another distinguished Floridian from Arcadia (i.e. in addition to Lee Austin) was Chesterfield Smith, who headed the Florida Constitutional Revision Commission in 1968 and served as President of the American Bar Association. Chesterfield also was the moving force behind the merger of his original law firm, Holland (i.e. Florida governor and Senator Spessard Holland), Bevis, McCrae & Smith, with a Tampa firm (Knight, Whittaker, Jones & Germany) and then growing the combined firm into the national law firm of Holland & Knight (which is where I practice).

      I am delighted to hear that you are happily retired in the Washington area. My wife of nearly 48 years is a graduate of Thomas Edison High School near Springfield, and I used to spend a bit of time in the area before my in-laws died. My friend, Jim O’Connor (he was in OCS and at Ft. Bragg with me and then served on a MAT in the Central Highlands), continues to live the area.

      While any complete resume I prepare certainly mentions my service, I have never mentioned my service in capsule biographies relating to my law practice. I am, however, happy with my decision to serve as an infantry officer rather than seeking a posting in underground mess-kit repair. While I have done a good bit of community service here in Orlando over the years, I never worked with a veteran’s organization until about five years ago. That was when I became involved in Camaraderie Foundation, a small, Orlando-based charity that provides counseling scholarships and other support to redeployed veterans (post 9/11) who suffer from the invisible wounds of war (i.e. PTSD and TBI) and their families. I now am in my second (and final) year as Chairman of that organization, and with applicable term limits 2017 will be my last full year on the board. I mention Camaraderie Foundation because my resume on the website of that organization (camraderiefoundation.org) specifically mentions both my MAT and province PSDF advisor service in Vietnam. My work for Camaraderie Foundation is what got me named a “Veteran of Influence,” which I do mention in my lawyer’s online biography. Incidentally, we have lots of retired colonels and three flag officers on the Camaraderie Foundation board; you may know or at least know of some of them.

      Lee, I still love to tell the story about the time when the Vietnamese block chief I knew said I should bring my boss with me for dinner at his house (which was grand by Vietnamese standards). Neither he nor his wife spoke a word of English, and interpreters were not invited. They served chicken, which in typical Vietnamese fashion was first cooked and then attacked with a meat cleaver, When you reached your chopsticks into the platter and pulled out your piece, you discovered that the foot was still attached! You handled it with great aplomb, but I still laugh at the expression on your face. By the way, even those who don’t know you and can’t see your expression enjoy the story.

      If you are in the Orlando area, please make sure you look me up.

      Leighton

  24. Leighton Yates:

    Your mention of Cong Thanh District and Loi Hoa caught my eye and made me laugh. When I arrived in VN my first assignment as an Asst. Advisor for MAT III-9 was in Cong Thanh at Loi Hoa around June ’69. I would be amazed if “my” Loi Hoa was the same as yours. Basically it was an old building near a large river with lots of B-40 holes in it, surrounded by concertina wire and uncharted mines, and manned by a truly motley crew of poorly trained PFs of questionable loyality.

    “My” Loi Hoa was home for the team for probably less than a month before we were moved to Nhon Trach. As I recall the place could have been overrun without much effort but we figured the VC didn’t want it any more than we did. The local PFs seemed to live on rice, 33 beer, and barbecued cat on a stick. The smell of singed cat hair and open latrines is my memory of Loi Hoa.

    Leighton, if any of this rings a bell, let me know and I might have some photos of your old outpost.

    Dick Berls

    • I am not sure if it was the same place. Our team house in Loi Hoa was a small outpost for a PF platoon beside a road and in the middle of a field and about 500 meters from the Dong Nai River. In the center was a small masonry building surrounded by wire and some bunkers. The words “New Horizon Platoon” (in Vietnamese of course) were painted in large red letters on the masonry structure. We lived inside and some of the PFs would squat outside the door and look in for hours, which drove our medic crazy (“What are you looking at?”). The PFs must have eaten all the cats before we got there, as I rarely saw a cat anywhere in the Vietnamese countryside. Naturally they did like dogs, rice and Lave LaRue (also called Tiger Beer– twice as big as a 33 beer and cost the same amount).

      Frankly, Loi Hoa as a “B hamlet” was really nice compared to our next stop, Tien Thanh (which was a “D hamlet”). In Tien Thanh we had to construct our own “team house” on an RF compound…we finally decided on a large corrugated pipe that we were able to scrounge at Long Binh. Perhaps the pipe made better living quarters than Old Mother Hubbard’s shoe, but not by much. On the other hand, when we got another MAT in Cong Thanh District they lived in Conex containers that made our pipe look luxurious.

      Leighton

  25. I (Ed Rutledge) was a shake ‘n’ bake E-6 assigned to MAT 9, Team 98 January into August ’69, following 6 months with 25th Inf., operating in Tay Ninh province. I reported to Lt’s. Dick Knight and Dick Berls; the former an unfortunate KIA during a second ’71 tour. I too had a little NVA battle flag cottage industry going, with the help of a Vietnamese seamstress, a few dead chickens (their blood, you see), and some well placed rounds of friendly fire, perforating the intentionally soiled fakes. I had no idea these enterprises were so widespread. I’ve often kidded to friends that a few US basements, with framed Vietnam memorabilia and manufactured stories to match, added spice to otherwise uneventful base-camp warrior tales. Who knew there could be hundreds of these tall fabrications? Ha!

    • Ed Riutledge. I am MSG Robinson on MAT Team 45, Advisory Team 98 from April 1969 to April 1970. Our team used the NVA flags to swap for food with the messhalls at Long Bein. We used the village seamtress in Nohn Trach District to make flags. We would wait after the lunch meals when the Mess Sargent was gone. There was always some young cooks to convince these flags was captured in a firefight. Sometimes we were lucky and got some steaks and one time we got a case of hotdogs. We had hotdogs for weeks. We used them to make pig in the blanket; Chopped hot dogs and spanish rice; grilled hot dogs or just boiil hotdogs. We were sick of hotdogs after a few weeks. The flags were always good to get certain medical supplies a the Evacuation Hospitals in Long Bein. I am sure that the NVA flags were the best trading item in Vietnam. I know that the MAT Teams could scrounge for food, supplies,weapons and other supplies in Vietnam. The hardest units to make a deal with was the Special forces units. In Bein Hoa there was a Team”A” and they wanted better items then a NVA flag. They had a walk in freezer with steaks,chicken,bacon,ham and it was had to trade for, unless you new somebody. They always seem to have plenty of beer. I saw your comments on the NVA flags and it brought back alot of memories, so I had to give our experience with the flags. Take care Ed. MSG Robinson,Retired USA.

      • Leonard….I think I was assigned to MAT 45 for a short time until I went down to MAT 9. Who were the other team members in September -November 1969. I think I temporarily replaced Lt Caamano who lost his life in September. I just recently learned he was from Tucson arizona where i worked for about 10 years a few years back . Lt Dave Naugle

        • Lt. Dave Naugle: In Sept 69 to Nov 69, team Mat-45 was operating out of the Trang Bom outpost. The Team members were 1st Lt. William Smith,2nd Lt. Denis Rosnick, SFC Solomen Bryant, SFC Larry Guizar, a SGT E-5, can’t remember his name, and then me, the medical Advisor. SFC Bryant was killed in Sept 69 in a jeep accident near Bear Cat. I was on leave at that time and when I return to the team, they moved to the outpost, at the bridge on the Dong Nai River, where they built them a living quarters on the upper level of the outpost, above the other advisory team at the bridge. Then we moved to the ammunition depot in Nohn Trach district. I left the team in April 1970, at the ammunition depot and Mat-9 was also at the depot. I don’t think that you were every attached to Mat-45,Dave. I hope this info helps you. Take care, MSG Robinson,Retired,USA

          • MSG Robinson Thanks for helping me with my memories of 50 years ago . I recall your team with MAT 9 at the ammo dump. That was quite some place. I was just trying to recall the Team I started with for a short time before I joined MAT 9. They were located a few kilometers east of Nhon Trach District headquarters.

  26. Served from August 68 through September 69. First 6 months in Ngon Trach with Maj Meyer, Lt Juan Brito, Sgt Willis, Boxi Mimm and several others whose names escape me. Last 7 months were in Bien Hoa. CO was Col Kirk, followed by Col Trinkler. Maj Meyer also moved to Bien Hoa as XO. Others I remember were Paul Bakunas, Tiny Nichols, Captain Selecky, and Maj Woodson. Would appreciate hearing from any who were there about same time.

    • Robert – I was on Team 98 from about June 69 to March 70. I crossed paths with Major Woodsen at Ft. Benning after I came home. If you recall, he was a minister who decided to serve in the Army, and took his commission in the Infantry. I was at the Infantry School as an Instructor at the Mountain Ranger Camp, and I ran into Woody while going to ITC. He took me home for dinner to meet his family, and his wife told me about how Woody’s team used to make VC flags to trade for stuff, and she wished he had brought one home with him. I confessed to them that while I was on Team 87 I had visited his compound in Cong Thanh because I was working with a classmate of his second in command, and had found his stash of flags and purloined one. I brought it back to Ft. Benning with me the next weekend I presented it to Major & Mrs. Woodsen. They were thrilled. I guess Woody decided to stay in the Army after Viet Nam. I never saw him again, as I was assigned to Dahlonega after ITC.

      Ray Heltsley

  27. My father, SFC James Isbell, jr., was on Tm98 Cong Than in 1967-1968. I can recall some of his team members. Maj Kuffal (sp) SFC Brown’ medic Doc Sauter, RTO sp/4 Loric. I was with Tm 87 in Xuan Loc 1967-1868 as medical advisor. We both were involved in Tet. My father returned for 1970-71 and was with Tm. 98 at Providence Hq. I returned also in 1970-1971 and was assigned to 54th Med. Det Chu Lai as a flight medic for Dustoff. In June 71 I transferred to Tm 98 and was with Maj. Mcloud for a short period, just long enough time to get my brains rattled. I was the sent to Tm 98 Mat-55 for the duration of my tour. On my team was Cpt Pope, Lt Yates, SFC Brown, and my personal Hero SSG Contreas without him I would be on the wall today, God bess you all. Sgt James F Isbell (Bacsi or Frank)

    • Frank: Are you sure you weren’t assigned to Tm 98 in Jun ’70 instead of ’71? I replaced MAJ McLeod, as a CPT, around July 1970. I remember your father well. We served together on Tm 98. He was an outstanding NCO. I also remember Lt. Leighton Yates, whom you mentioned. What is the status of your dad today? Lee Austin

      • As noted by SP4 Frank Isbell and CPT Lee Austin, I served on as Assistant Advisor on MAT 55 in Cong Thanh District of Bien Hoa Province (first in Loi Hoa and then in Tien Tan) from May ’70 through November ’70. In addition to SP4 Frank Isbell, those serving on MAT 55 during my tenure were Captain Pope, SSG Smith (11B), SSG Graves (Medic, later transferred to district and replaced by SP4 Isbell), SSG Contreras (11B), and SFC Trogden (11C). From November of ’70 until I went home and got out of the Army in March of ’71, I served directly under CPT Austin and MAJ McLeod as the People’s Self Defense Force Advisor for Bien Hoa Province.

        After the Army I attended law school at the University of Florida and have practiced law in Orlando, Florida for more than 42 years. You can see my picture (fat, bald, old and ugly) and read my professional biography on my law firm’s website, hklaw.com.

    • I served on Team 98 Cong Than from December 1967 through June 1968. Our team included Major Kuffle, Captain Slaughter, SFC Brown, “Doc” our medic and “Young Blood”. Also, SFC Isbell who kept us fed and alive by being one magnificent scrounger. He could go out in the morning driving a jeep and come back in the afternoon driving a duce and a half with a 50 cal mounted on it and groceries in the back. True story. I ran the PRU (Provincial Reconnaissance Unit). We all got pretty close during the Tet Offensive. Generally, a great group of guys. If your father is still alive please give him my best regards. SSG James Kerbey.

  28. If his family would like the pictures I have of him I’d be glad to cut a CD and send them. Regards, Don

  29. Gentlemen, sp4 Francis McEvoy,I served on team 98 from may 68 to may 69. I lived at the villa as a radio operator for 2mounths and then became spiney spuds 6 romeo for the remainder.I was radio operator for lt col kirk for the remainder. Along with the colonel and our driver hossi long,I travelled to all the outposts and remember them well.Too bad I cant remember names. A few I do remember.Don gerrardo from Newark,Tiny from some dairy farm in wisconson,Hopkins and stewart from Baltimore,Wyatt and his buddy (enlisted together)from Maryland,Doc hughes the medic,lockwood the cook from ny, Sgt major Post. I think it was Post who owned that miserable monkey that was chained up at the villa. I remember a lot more faces than names.Its good to here from you guys and wish you all the best,

    • Thanks for posting your recollections, Francis. I was with Team 98 for most of the same time period as you. You have a great memory for the names of team members we served with. I thank you for that because you brought back for me vivid recollections of yourself and all the others you mentioned. Best wishes to you and your family – (1Lt) Warren Barshes

    • Francis, I was at HQ from July 68 to May 69. I was the S-4 for the team. I’m sorry that I don’t remember your name or any of the other names you mentioned except for Sgt (Doc) Hughes. I remember him because he reported to me. At 71 I’m surprised I remember my own name. Where do you live? Warren Barshes and I have had some communications through this website, but no one else until you, I have also reconnected with 1LT Clem Ward and 1LT Jack Scherbert through other channels. Regards. 1LT Gus Engelland

      • On an internet search I found (Cpt) Dennis Foggy, but I haven’t been in contact with him Warren

    • McEvoy I remember you well and of course Gerrado who was quite a character. I remember Col Kirk coming to the hooch to get you to take him somewhere and was glad I didn’t have your job. I was in charge of Administration and worked in the office with Sgt. Post. One evening I happened to be in the jeep with you and Col Kirk and heard on the radio that there was a fire fight in one of the outposts (usually over on a matter of minutes). Kirk insisted on going so we drove through the jungle at night to get there. Good to catch up with you.

      Sgt. Gene Luke March 1968-1969.

        • Charlie Watkins, first name I’ve recognized. You probably don’t remember but you made a memory that I’ll never forget and that was my 25th birthday. I was walking across the compound and you appeared with one of those big Washington apples with a lit candle on it. You handed it to me as you said “congratulations, you’re a quarter of a century old today” as I took the apple my fingers sunk into the back side of the apple which was rotten, the only traumatic birthday I ever had. To this day I still remember feeling old and still feel my fingers sinking into the apple. It is a fond memory which I’ve shared many times. Thanks for the memory.
          I live in Minnesota and have been retired for 9 years.

          Can’t believe it’s been 50 years since our time Vietnam. Hope the years have been kind to you.

          • Robert,
            Thanks for the memory! My wife and I had a laugh over this. I live in NW Alabama (Muscle Shoals area). Been married for almost 47 years to my wife Sherry. I am a CPA in a firm here. Have been trying to retire but, clients will not agree to it. It has been a long time since Bien Hoa but I still have fond memories of all of the guys there. I just found this site a few days ago and have made contact with “Cool Hand” Luke. Also, noticed where McEvoy had made a posting. I also remember Lt. Barshes that has posted here. My email address is cwatkins@wjpg.com if you would like to correspond.
            Great to hear from you!

        • Watkins – It is great hearing from you. Yes, I passed my 45 along to you and you were a great person to work with. After Vietnam I went back to Virginia and am still here. I would really like to speak with you to hear about events after I left. Please give me a call sometime at 703-304-0429.

          Sgt Gene “Cool Hand” Luke

          • Luke – Great to hear from you! I have told my family a lot about you and our experiences. Do you remember our writing Bobby Gentry and her sending us a nice letter and picture of herself? I think you ended up with the picture! My email address is cwatkins@wjpg.com if you want to correspond. I will try and call you soon.
            Watkins

            • Watkins – I don’t remember the Bobby Gentry letter but it sounds like something we would do. Glad to hear you are doing well in Alabama. Yes, I would like to touch base and speak with you. When I left Vietnam I kind put it behind me but did return in 1998. I went to Hanoi, then Hue and then Saigon. From Saigon I got someone at the hotel to drive me to Bien Hoa. It had become a city and I had a lot of difficulty finding the villa. The only way I found it was by locating the driveway into it. As you may recall, the drive was at a 45 degree angle rather than straight in like most driveways. I went in the compound where a number of Vietnamese were living. They came out and greeted me and I held the babies and laughed with them. The hooches in the back where I first lived were gone but the makeshift area where I last stayed was still there. I made my way into it and it had obviously been deserted for many years. The barb wire next to it was still there. I still think and worry about the Vietnamese that we worked with like Miss Snow and Mr. Nguyen.

              Give me a call when you can at 703-304-0429. E-mail geneluke@msn.com.

              Gene Luke

  30. Hello,

    Ed Rutledge, team 98 member 1/69-8/69, currently retired in Virginia. Anyone remember me?

    Best regards

    • Ed. I joined team 98, MAT9 right after you left. What were your responsibilities there. Dave Naugle

      • Small arms “expert.” In truth I was an E-6 shake ‘n’ bake sargeant who had survived 6 months previous service as an infantry Plt. Sgt. and was offered the MAVC job as my battalions senior field NCO. I accepted the offer at the end of a God awful day, where my company had walked into an ambush. The two week language school following was my best time in country. I left team 98 with our interpreter confiding I had a $200. NVA bounty on my head. What a year…

        • Ed, I do remember you. I was Asst. team leader under 1lt Dick Knight. I know I have some pictures of us in Vung Gam. I am presently doing the tourist thing at the Grand Canyon, but once I return to Colorado I will dig some stuff out you will find of interest. Send me your email address. My address is dickberls@hotmail.com. My entire tour until 4/70 was with MAT 9

          • Dick, my email is ecrutledge@gmail.com…it would be fun seeing anything from those misspent days. Enjoy your time at GC, I did that a few years ago with AZ based retiree friends, it’s a spectacular place. Are you in contact with any other team members, or know their status? I have no photos from that period, my camera having been swiped while attending the language school, so my only keepsakes have been from the preceding infantry assignment. I’d enjoying seeing anything you’ve retained.

            best regards,

            Ed

    • Ed – I ran Admin in Bien Hoa. Your mail came through my office so most people knew me because that was our link to the world. I live in Reston, VA. Where in Virginia do you live.

      Sgt Gene Luke

      • Small world; raised the family in Herndon from 1985, but divorced about a dozen years ago, so finally sold the house when all the kids left. I’m in a smaller Reston abode the past two years.
        I don’t recall meeting admin staff, never visiting MACV offices to my recollection. My team leaders kept the NCO’s at RF/PF obligations, or out scrounging for supplies. The only outside team fellow I recall was a CIA operative who wore madras shorts, and liked to be called “major,” even though he wasn’t one.
        Again, small world…

        • Ed – sorry I didn’t see you during our time there but it was good hearing from you. By going to the blog I heard from my assistant Sp Watkins who I really enjoyed working with. Feel free to contact me if you would like to grab a beer sometime. I can be reached at 703-304-0429.

          Gene Luke

          • The feeling is mutual; if you’re in the mood for a Reston Town Center (or other) venue get together, just reach out. My email is ecrutledge@gmail.com and cell # 703-282-4294. Did you spend all your time with MACV? I served as a “shake ‘n’ bake” platoon sgt with the 25th Inf. Div. in Tay Ninh for 5 months before tapped for MAT duty. MACV felt like heaven after being a grunt for five months. My team leader was Lt Dick Knight, his XO Lt Dick Berls. Either name ring a bell? Knight was killed during a second tour in ’71, by then a Captain and company commander, with snake bit Americal Div.

            • Ed, You caught my attention when you mentioned Lt Berls. He was my MAT Team Leader for MAT 9 when it was located down at Vung Gam. Our Medic was Sgt Brewer and I recall SSGT Lawrence being with us as well.I was his XO. I came in country towards the end of 1968 and left July 1970. After a number of months in Vung Gam we were moved north up by an ammo dump on the river not far from Nhon Trash District Headquarters.

              • Tebo – wasn’t Lawrence with you for a time?seems to me that he and I shared a little space on an APC supporting the Rome plows…my first “contact” about two days after I arrived.
                Jeff Nilsson

                • Still hot down there? We’re still in Wisconsin. Will leave for home 10/19.

                  I don’t remember any Lawrence. When I got there, Dave Naugle was my team leader. When he left, I took over. I had SSg Huddleston and SSg “Slick.” Also had some medics whose names I can’t remember. (One of them left Huddleston & me in a D village when he got drunk and didn’t pick us up as planned.)

                  Would love to find Huddleston & Slick.

              • Dick Berls was the second to Dick Knight, Berls arriving on scene around May, 69. I had been there since January. Both Dick’s were great guys. Berls and I rode in our jeep to support our RF/PF (can’t remember) guys who had an ambush sprung on them, shortly after Dick arrived. He drove, I manned the mounted M60 in our jeep. It was over when we got on site, but Dick recently told me he was concerned he’d lose hearing if I opened fire over his shoulder. We had a mutual chuckle. You’ve probably read here that Dick Knight, Berls and my boss, was killed on a second tour in 1971. During my seven months with MAT 9, we had one NCO lose a finger in firefight, but nothing more serious. My real combat occurred with the 25th Dividion in ’68, so I conssidet myself very lucky, all in all.

  31. Don. Glad that you receive the article,okay. The pictures that you sent me, I did not know the names of the people in the pictures. I remember the Nohn Trach District HQS but I did not meet any of the RF officers and personnel. I wen’t to the District a couple of times but the team spent most ot the time on operations in Nohn Trach. The advisor, that is picture in the article is 1LT. William Smith, our team leader who was on the operation with the RF forces from Trang Bom District. I remember that our bunker at the Trang Bom outpost was the main building with marvel tile flooring and when the moonson rain came, it was like a river flowing thru it. Just out side our bunker was a well where we always shower. I hope you enjoy reading the article about our team. Take care Don and I wish you the best. MSG Robinson,RET. USA

  32. Robinson: Got the article. Thanks. Add in the attack during my stay there and clearly that compound got tested regularly. We added a bunker with our radio in “Trang Bom Courtyard” picture right outside the main building door in front of the jeep in the picture. That was there before the attack so most of my pictures must have preceded the attack. Do you know the names of any of the people in the pictures?

  33. Don Streicher: I received the CD from you, last week. Thanks. The pictures brought back a lot of memories of Trang Bom,Long Thanh; and Nohn Trach District. MAT 45 pick up their mail at the Long Thanh Base, when we were in Nohn Trach. I am going to send you by mail a copy ofthe article in the overseas weekly, dated 20 Sept 1969. The article was about MAT45 , when we were at the French Outpost in Trang Bom in Sept 69. The reporter permission to be inbeded with us, was not approve by the HQS in Bein Hoa. He arrived at our outpost with a platoon of the 11 Armor Cav and decided to go on an operation with our team, so It did not go over so big with the higher ups. They found out about it when it showed up in the overseas weekly. Thanks again, Don and I wish you the best. MSG Robinson,RET,USA.

  34. LT. Dave Naugle: Yes, our MAT Team 45 was with MAT 9 at the this outpost around March and April 1970. It was an ammunition Depot near the Dong Ni river. The team members at this time,were 1LT. William G Smith, team leader, 2d Lt. Denis Rosnick, Asst Team leader, SFC Larry Guizar, Heavy Weapons advisor, and I was the medical advisor. The light weapons advisor, I don’t remember his name. He was a Sgt. E-5 who like to eat and wanted to marry a Vietmamese Girl. I left for the states in April 1970. I was assign to Madigan Gen Hosp, in Washington State, were I was NCOIC of fourteen Health clinics at FT. Lewis for one year and then I went back to Madigan and was NCOIC of the Clinical Specialist School and Clinical instructor at the school. I did this assignment for one year and then I was sent to the 97th Gen Hosp in Frankfurt, Germany were I served as Chief Wardmaster. I did this assignment for two years and then I retired. I went back to Tacoma, Washington after military retirement and worked at a hospital , were I was performing nursing duties and Hospital management for 25 years in Critical Care. I wished I had information on what happen to the team, I was with, after I left them in April 1970. Dave, maybe you can update me on what happen to MAT 45 after I left Vietnam? Glad to hear from you and wish you the best. MSG Robinson,RET.USA

  35. MSG Robinson. I recall you from Nhon Trach District. I believe that your team was with MAT 9 in the French built building along the river port. Who were your other team members back than? I have lived in Arizona for many years now. Lt Dave Naugle.

  36. Warren thanks for the details of the NVA attack on Trang Bom compound. I enjoy reading what happen at this French Outpost before our MAT Team arrive there around Sep 69. I know the NVA was using this area for a supply line and I was hearing they use this route for their R&R to Vung Tau. I believe Col Trinkler was at Bein Hoa when we were doing operations in Nohn Trach and Trang Bom. We also did operations at the Bridge going to Saigion and Long Bein. We were doing ambushes along the Dong Ni River and searching boats traveling on the river. Maybe I will look you up in Honolulu when I return there for a vacation. I always like to stay at the armed forces hotel. Me and my wife were there in 2013. Thanks again Warren for this info and details of your team defense of the compound from the NVA on 23 Feb 69. Take care,MSG Robinson,RET.USA

    • I look forward to a visit together here in Honolulu with you and your wife.My home is about a 15 minute walk to the Hale Koa. I have been rated by the VA as 100% service connected permanently disabled, I walk to the Hale Koa to use their swimming pool and shop at their Exchange once a week. Also, I volunteer at the U.S. Army Museum of Hawaii just next door. I would be honored to give you and your wife a personal guided tour through the museum.

      Your reference to the Dong Ni River brings back memories. I was attached to a night patrol with the 11th Armored Cav on the river. I was the ARVN liaison in case of a fire fight. Nothing happened except for 3 U.S. tank opening their arc lights from a bluff above us and our boat was suddenly lit up in brilliant white light. Needless to say, an urgent radio call put those lights out before they fired on us and we returned safely.

      Best regards to a brother,

      Warren

  37. Leonard: For some reason I didn’t see the post with your address until this evening when I was re-browsing everything. I just cut the CD and will put it in the mail this week.

    Regards, Don

  38. Thanks, Leonard, for your detailed description of your MAT service. Col. Trinkler asked for volunteers to form MAT 30C to occupy the old French outpost at Trang Bom. Intelligence indicated a significant attack on Bien Hoa city. Cpt. Dennis Foggey was the team leader, I was assistant team leader, Sgt. Davidson was weapons specialist. I don’t remember the names of our medic and the other sergeant. Two days after we set up, we captured an NVA soldier while on patrol. He said (under a bit if duress) he was a scout for a NVA division about 10 km from Trang Bom. As with your experience, our medic also made medic calls in the village.

    The attack on the village and outpost started at about 0330 on 23 February 1969. Our RF ambush team and advisor made it back to the outpost with 2 wounded and 1 KIA. It began with a vicious motar attack, then the enemy began attacking the outpost with automatic and small arms fire from two sides. My job was to get to the top of the tower located at the corner of the outpost and determine the direction of the attack and strength of the opposing force. Over the next few hours of the attack I had to trip several times to assess any changes. Mortar and RPG rounds were coming in constantly. We did get some light artillary support from an SF A Team located about 5 km away. Also, a “Puff the magic dragon” came on station and did its thing for about 30 minutes. By this time, a couple of structures caught on fire. so it wasn’t too difficult to see us at night from the sky.

    By early dawn…I guess around 0530, the enemy started breaking off contact with some sporadic fire. We called for a dustoff and I organized a platoon of RFs to secure the landing zone. I assisted loading the wounded while pulling off other RFs who just wanted to get the heck out of there. Since it was still considered a hot zone, we couldn’t expect another dustoff.

    By 0700 all hostile contact broke off. I think most of the NVA Division went on their way to Bien Hoa. Around 1000 I receive a call on the radio call from “Black Hawk” for clearance to arrive at our landing zone. I thought: Who is Bakc Hawk? It turned out to be a unit held in reserve to rescue units in deep trouble. They landed and I told the Captain we were ok for now and he left. The next day an ARVN Company made it though to strengthen our defense.

    Leonard, I hope this gives an understanding of the attack that MAT 30C went though during the second TET enemy offensive in 1969. My recollection may not be entirely accurate, but I think it’s pretty close.

    If you ever come to Honolulu, please let me know and we can get together. My email address is: warrenbb43@yahoo.com. My home phone is: 808-744-3990.

    Take care and all the best,

    Warren

  39. Warren MAT 30C. Thanks for the comment on the compound in Trang Bom District. I was not aware of the attack on this compound In Feb 69. I do remember the well in front of our Team bunker. The team use the water well for bathing in the evening. I also remember an incident when two RF officers got into a fight and one pulled out his 45 and shot at the one that was laying on the ground. We reported it too our HQS in Bein Hoa and some Vietemese Colonel came down and relived the officer of his command. Of course this was not new to us, we experience this every now and then. I remember when our team was in Nohn Trach at a outpost and I was showering from a canvas shower stall our team made, and every body was running by me and then I saw a drunk RF with a handgernade and the pin pulled and he was chasing some other RF’s. They finally calm him down and convince him to toss the grenade over a bern. You, better believe I was sweating this one out. The next day he was doing the flag pole kneeling and spending the night in the chicken pen. Take care Warren and thanks for the info. MSG Robinson,RET.USA

    • Thanks Leonard….if you and others of our brothers wish to hear more about the Trang Bom time in February, 1969 just let me know. Afterwards, I received an ACM with “V” Device and there were two Bronze Stars with “V” Devices also awarded to members of our team. Purple Heart also were received. MAT 30C and Trang Bom village got hit hard by the NVA on their way to attacking Bien Hoa city on 23 February 1969. Glad to know you are doing well…Take care

      Warren – Advisory Team 98, MAT 30C

      • Warren: Thanks for you reply. Yes, I would like to hear from you about MAT Team 30C attack from the Viet Cong in Feb Tet,1969. The Trang Bom compound was a key outpost on Highway one and not too far from Bein Hoa and Long Bein. I saw a video of the attack on the Villages around Long Bein, where the Viet Cong infiltrated and stock pile their weapons for their Feb Tet offensive,1969, so that they could attack Long Bein and Bein Hoa. I was at FT. Bragg in Feb 69 , just finishing the MATA special warfare class and on my way to Vietnam around the time of the 69 Tet offensive. When I joined MAT 45 in Nohn Trach district, I found out how quickly I needed to adapt to a dangerous and Hostile enviorment. In just a few weeks with the Team, I was involved into two firefights with the Viet Cong. I also received The ACM with “V” device, I received the Bronze Star with “V” device and since I was the Medical Advisor, I received the CMB. This all happen in a few weeks apart. I was involved in many combat operations with the team . In Trang Bom, I treated many local Villagers, including children. I remember when a catholic priest had a accident with his scooter, the villagers brought him to me and he had a large laceration of the head. I did a debridement of the wound and suturing it up, then I gave him some antibotics and told him to come back and see me in a week, so that I could remove his sutures. He came back in a week and brought me a big fruit basket and I remove the sutures. I remember when the RF’s brought me a veit Cong who was trying to set a booytrap in the village and it went off. His one arm was badly damage. I stop the bleeding and started a IV of Dextran which was a blood expander. We call a dust off, to take him to Long Bein. So I mention these incidents, because I was involve in Firefights but also a medical Advisor who had to make medical decisions and I did conduct Med Caps in the villages. I was grateful that I had a lot of medical training as a 91C and had my LPN nursing license and I was a medical instructor who coordinated phase II training for medical personnel including Special Forces personnel before they were assign to a “A” Team. In Vietnam I was able to due what I was train to do. I also help carrying the PRC 25 when we went on ambushes. I am sure that your assign medical advisor was involve in firefights and I also would like to know their experiences was with your team. Waiting to hear from you. MSG Robinson,RET. USA

  40. I spent most of my tour 1969-1970 with MAT 9 in Nhon Trach District. However, I spent a short time with another MAT in the district but I can’t remember the number. What I recall is that I initially replaced lt Jim Cavalaris who was Kia the last month of his tour. Can someone help bring back some of those memories from 1969?

    • Dave: I remember that a team leader was KIA on a search and destroy operation in NohnTrach District around the end of June or the first few weeks in July 69. It was the same month he was to return home. The RF/PF unit he was with were being inserted by choppers and he was the first to get off into the LZ and a sniper shot him in the head. He was on the MAT Team that replace our Team MAT 45 around June 69, when we moved to another location. This MAT Team outpost was located about 100 yards off the main dirt road between Long Thanh and Nohn Trach District Headquarters. It was up an incline above the hamlet located on the main road. This hamlet was the home of many Vietcong families. Their was a small Villa at the bottom of the road that went to our outpost and Two Village Teachers live in a small brick house across from it. Down the road towards the District HQs, their was the hamlet marketplace and a road went up the a Catholic Church. As you leave the hamlet the road take you down ambush alley. We always put our jeep in top speed until we got to end of the alley. This area was mainly rice paddes. At the end of the rice paddes was a small PF location and then their was a small hamlet and then down the road was our District HQS. I hope this bring back some memories of this area. I don’t remember the MAT Team number, but I know that a team leader from this team was KIA the same month he was to return home. Wish you the best,Dave. MSG Robinson,RET,USA, MAT Team 45, Advisory team 98

      pf

      • Is the name of the Team Leader Len Camaano? I had heard he was KIA by a sniper just after I rotated back to the States in early July, 1969 – Len and I did an in-country R&R to Vung Tau once.

        • Yes, it was Leo. He was shot as soon as he got off the helicopter. It was his first operation after returning from R&R.

          • Len Camaano and I connected as brothers. I told him he had “bandit” in him. He always wore the red kerchief around his neck. R.I.P. Len…

            • I just ran across the date that LT Camaano was KIA. The records have it as 9-28-1969 which ties in correctly with my memories. I was in the language program at Dian when we received word of an Advisors KIA. The next day my orders were changed to replace him. I don’t remember the MAT Team Number since I spent most of my tour at MAT 9. Can anyone remember that team number. Their location was just north of the highway that ran from Nhon Trach over to Long Thanh as far as I remember.

      • SGM Robinson…your description of the Trang Bom outpost is quite accurate. I remember the well in the center of the outpost where I would wash late at night. Feb 1969, I was assigned to MAT30C in anticipation of the second TET offensive in February, 1969. Trang Bom village and our outpost got hit hard about 0400. We took some casualties but survived the assault. The attack lasted a couple of hours. We were reliived from the surrounding NVA/VC forces 12 hours later.

    • Dave: There was another Mat advisor who was KIA around the middle of 1969. I don’t remember his name, but he was assigned to a Mat Team that was located on Highway 15 between Long Thanh and Vung Tau. He was a officer who just arrive in country and was not too long with this team. The Vietcong ambush some vechiles on Highway 15 and this Mat team went to help them and was ambush by the Vietcong. He was KIA and was awarded the silver star. I remember when he came to our outpost, along with some other advisors from Bein Hoa HQS, who then took him to the Mat team. This was in Nohn Trach District and the RF/PF were fighting some Vietcong along, with Gunships support. We were monitoring the firefight and I remember the Gunships were receiving machine gun fire and the Vietcong were using the village chief house to fire on the choppers. They had to request the District Chief permission to fire on the machine gun placement. It took awhile for the approval but the approval came and the gunships destroy the machine gun placement and I assume the Village chief house. Dave, this is the only other officer that I know that was KIA between Apr 69 to Apr 70, beside Len who was shot by a sniper. I don’t know if his name was Jim Cavalaris. This officer was not that long assigned to this Mat Team before he was KIA. I hope this helps you to remember what MAT Team you spent a short time with. MSG Robinson,RET,USA

      • That team leader that was killed on Hwy 15 was Randy Turner. He was from Spokane, WA and had not been in country very long. His Sergeant was also wounded. I believe most of the 274 VC Regt was involved in that one. They had security at both ends of the kill zone, and another big group watching an LZ behind them. The 18th ARVN tried to put a battalion in to that LZ and they met such heavy resistance they couldn’t break through. The only relief that ever made it into the kill zone were to V100’s from Bear Cat. They were able to get Randy’s body and his wounded Sergeant out of there. The primary target of the ambush was a battalion from the ARVN 48th Regiment that was in a convoy on its way to Vung Tau. The MAT Team got involved by trying to reinforce the ARVN with their RF/PF’s. The VC got worked over pretty well by Tac Air. When a sweep was made of the area after they pulled out, they found no VC bodies, but as I recall there were about 49 AK47’s left on the ground and lots of blood trails. It was a costly operation for them.

      • Leonard Robinson: My MAT team ( III-9 ) and yours shared quarters for a while at the ammo dump. The 1LT that was KIA on Highway 15 was Randy V. Turner. It was in Sept ’69. He and I spent a fair amount of time together when he first arrived in country. Kind of showing him the ropes thing. Classy guy who really was only there a few months, at most. As I recall his wife had just given birth to a baby girl right before he went overseas. I could be wrong about that, but that seems to have stuck in my mind. I went to the site on Hwy 15 with a bunch of PRUs to form a blocking position. Never saw a thing, nor got resupplied with water, but I think the battle resulted in dozens of 274th VC regiment members killed.

        I likely have pictures of you and some members of your team – Garzara, Resnick, and some young E-6 who left country about the same time as me. Bill Smith and I have remained in touch over the years. We both graduated from the same OCS class. You likely remember my medic, Lordine Brewer. I think I heard he died in Texas about 15 years ago. I have a picture in my head of you and Brewer arguing over how to treat some RFs infected big toe, in what served as our “day room.” I think the “cut it open and let it drain” argument won, much to the displeasure of the RF troop and the US advisors sitting around drinking beer. My other NCOs at that time were George Lawerance (Sp?) and Thomas Gibbons. David Naugle (who you have talked with) was my replacement.

        Dick Berls

        • Dick Berls: Thanks for the quick response. I remember the other MAT Team was at the ammo Depot with us. We were MAT 45. Our team had 1LT. William Smith,Team leader; 2nd LT. Denis Rosnick, Asst Team leader; SFC Larry Guizar,heavy weapons advisor; a light weapons advisor, I don’t remember his name, he was a big eater,so we always send him to Long Bien to scrounge food and he had a vietemese girl friend that he wanted to get married too. I was the medical advisor and I remember SFC Brewer, your medical advisor. We had our aid station located in the lounge near our radio equipment and were the ping pong table was. I remember the RF solider with the wounded toe which we decided to not sew up because it was better to drained and prevent infection. Sorry to hear he past away. I hope I was able to provide Dave some info on what MAT Team he went too. I now also remember about Captain Smith being KIA and his driver wounded by the mine. The Thais would not go to their aid and secure LZ for a dustoff. The dustoff went in on his own and dusted off Cpt smith and the Sgt. The Thais were superstitious about going out a night. Our team had the same problem with the Thais when a PF Squad near our outpost in Nohn Trach was overrun by the VC. We tried to get them to help us rescue the squad. We started down the road to rescue them and the Thai’s refuse to respond at night, so the RF unit we was with did not wan’t to go at it alone,so we turn around by a small bend in the road and return to our outpost. The next morning we went to the outpost. The VC had a Chinese claymore around the bend of the road and was ready to ambush us. We had some RF’s KIA and found a lot of unit ran and hid in a cemetery. The PF’s that ran away had to answer to the RF commander we consist of kneeling by the flagpole all day and spending the night in a wire pen and the next day, dig a six by six hole and then filled it backup. Take care Dick. It was nice hearing from you. MSG Robinson,RET.USA

  41. I was on MAT-45 advisor Team 98 from Apr 69 to Apr70. I was the medical advisor, SFC Robinson and I was promoted to MSG around a month before I left the team for the states. I remember alot of the incidents that was blog by former members of Team 98. I remember how Nhon Trach District was a hot bed of Viet Cong action. I was involved in some firefights in this area. One night me and SFC Byrant went on an ambush about 1000 yards from our outpost with a squad of RF soliders and caught some Viet Cong coming into the Village and We had about a five minute firefight with the Viet Cong. We was able to kill one Viet Cong and capture his weapon. Then me and SFC Byrant drag him all the way back to the outpost. In Sept 69, SFC Bryant was killed in a jeep accident. About two months latter after my ambush experience, Me and another Sgt went to the village and got a block of ice and on our way back to our outpost, we came upon an ambush by the Vietcong on a PF and Revoulution Development and we got pinned down on the road side. What saved us was another MAT team came down the other side of the road and had a 60cal machine gun on their jeep. Once the Viet Cong DiDi Mau, We found a wounded Revolution Development Team member and we put him in our jeep and took him to the outpost for a dust off, of course our block of ice was melted. MAT 45, we moved to many locations and the last few months our team was at the ammo depot. When I left, 1LT Smith or was it Captain Smith was our Team leader. There was a SFC Guizar on the team, I not sure I spelled his name right. If, anybody know what happen to the team after I left, I would like to know.

  42. Robert Streicher:
    I was Asst and Senior Advisor of Mat III-9 from 6/69 to 5/70 located briefly in Cong Than and then mostly in Nhon Trach near the Rung Sat.
    As I recall when I joined the team it was being reformed in 6/69 when the old team was almost all WIA. You were likely the team before that.
    You were probably responsible for all the stolen vehicles, weapons, etc we inherited. Thanks

    • And I was Dick Berl’s assistant team leader for MAT III-9 through May 1970 and team leader through July 1970 when I returned to the USA. We had lots of extra vehicles and some 50 caliber machine guns which came in handy more for the effect than anything else. I still remember the small village of Vung Gam on the edge of the Rung Sat.

  43. I am TinaTrinkler Mercer, Col Trinkler’s daughter. I really enjoyed reading your comments and chuckled about the alligator mouth. If you have any pictures or stories that you could share with me I would be so appreciative. My son never got to meet my father and he loves to see the photos. My father did sadly pass away in 1989. My mother lives with us here in Nashville and we spend time in Newport Beach California with my husbands family. I think I may have met one of you in Carlisle but I was probably 7 or 8 at the time. Thank for giving my mom and I a walk down memory lane. She is still chuckling about the alligator mouth.

    Sincerely,
    Tina Trinkler Mercer

    • Hello, Tina,

      I am pleased to hear from you, and yes, I did meet you in Carlisle while your dad was at the War College. I am also pleased to hear that your mother Shirley is there with you. I used to send Christmas cards to her in Tennessee, but lost track at some point. If you reply to phil.park643@verizon.net, I will be pleased to dig out some slides and scan them for you.

      Merry Christmas!

      Phil Park

    • Tina, if you look through your dad’s papers, you may find a drawing of a tweety bird with an alligator head. We called it the Trinkler Bird, and the drawing was presented to him when he shipped out.

    • Colonel Trinkler was my all-time favorite commander. I spent five years on active duty, and 8 more in the National Guard, and never served under a better officer, and for lack of a military term for it, a more lovable one. He was a mover and a shaker, but he just made you want to always do everything right just because you didn’t want to disappoint him. I always felt more like he was my Father rather than my commander. Wonderful man!

  44. Concerning Captain Billy Jake Smith, KIA 12 Feb 1970: I have been in touch with Captain Smith’s youngest brother, Michael. He is looking for any information and/or photographs that those who served with Smitty might be able to provide. Captain Smith was killed in Long Thanh on Feb 12, 1970, when he and Sgt. Cooney were in their vehicle heading toward one of their MAT units. I believe it was a buried artillery round that was command detonated. Captain Smith died instantly, Sgt. Cooney was severely wounded but was able to call for a dust-off. He died of pneumonia while in the hospital in Japan. If anyone has information about Captain Smith, or possible contact information for Sgt. Cooney’s family, Michael Smith would greatly appreciate it. He can be reached at mbsmith4@icloud.com, or 1-304-364-5892.
    Thanks,
    Ray Heltsley

    • you are correct,i was at cpt.smith old outpost, located on a hill with RF 454 CO. i remember what took place. other members of TM 78 were SFC Haskle the medic was (DOC) phillips my name is bill buffton i was weapons and + i dont remember the names of other members’

  45. If I am in your neighborhood I will be sure to give you a call. Pull up google maps and there is now a golf course on “Dog Bone Island,” across from the ammo dump at TTH. Amazing!

  46. We lived in Train Compound in the City. I worked at III DASC which was next to III TOC, in an underground old French bunker located adjoining Bien Hoa AB, Special
    Forces 5 (?) and Bien Hoa Army Base. Later I went to Tay Ninh East and back to Bien Hoa Air Base with Rustic Facs.

  47. I arrived in July of 68 and the HQ was in a villa in Bien Hoa city, but I guess I was too late to remember the silver star award.

    • Gus – I can’t quite place you but I was at the villa in Bien Hoa from March 68 to March 69. When I left LTC Robert Kirk was the CO. I worked at Dulles for a number of years and would see him and speak with him from time to time.

      Sgt. Gene Luke

  48. Isn’t there anyone on here that was with Tm 98 when the Hqs was in a Villa in Bein Hoa and Long Thanh was active. Was Senior Advisor and was awarded the Silver Star in Bein Lam Hamlet in Long Thanh in early 1968……

  49. I think I’ve found, collected, and digitized all my Vietnam pictures. Send your address to me at Don_Streicher@sbcglobal.net or post here and I’ll mail out a CD with them on it. ….. maybe someone can identify all the people I’ve forgotten the names of :>(.

  50. I was a Ground Radio Operator (USAF) ’70-’72 and have only vague memories of my experiences. Am 100 percent service-connected-PTSD and have half of my service records “blacked out”, showing only a few areas in IIICorp (Bien Hoa, Cu Chi, etc.). Know I spent 2 separate stints up on Nui Ba Dinh providing air support for troops in Cambodia. Also remember living on the Tay Nihn Province Chief’s compound and watching the city being evacuated. I was sent to Danang after Big Red One went home and also know I was up at Dong Ha coordinating air strikes with FAC’s. I used a MRC-108 radio jeep most of the time but also had a green/white Vietnamese National Police jeep at times. I had no combat training, could barely use an M-16,was just a buck Sgt, and usually had ARVN and VNAF counterparts with me. Have lots of “blanks” during these tours so if anyone has anything to share I would truly be grateful. Dennis Miller

  51. Thank you for your detailed reply, K.T., and I very much appreciate your kind thoughts and wishes. If you ever come to Honolulu, Hawaii, I would be honored to meet with you and be your host to historical sites around the island, including the U.S. Army Museum of Hawaii where I volunteer.

    • Mr. Barshes: Thank you for your invitation. Yes, Honolulu is a great place, so much history… Our family vacationed there in the past and we also love all the Hawaiian islands. We are exploring retirement in Waimea area near Hilo in the future and will stop by Honolulu for a visit, especially the U.S. Army Museum. Eventhough my husband has never served in the military, he love U.S. Military history. If you ever travel this way, come and stay with us in Tulsa! In the meantime, I will continue to find out more about your interpreter. I have lots of relatives who served the ARVN in the Bien Hoa area and might have known him, I will occasionally inform you such progress. K. Thiha

  52. My dad, Homer Speakman was in Vietnam twice. 1965 -66 and 1970-71. The second time he was with Macv 98. He talked about a Lt. Turnipseed and fishing for prawns and a dog named ajax. Does anyone here remember him?

  53. Don: I look forward to seeing the pictures. I went thru the same process of photoshopping my slides before putting them on a thumb drive. I apparently never thought all those slide I took in the 70s and 80s would be replaced by something else. Dah? Let me know if you need an address.

  54. Don, it’s a bit confusing about the dates. MAT 30C in February 1969 was led by Team Leader Cpt Dennis Foggey and I was Ass’t Team Leader. Sgt Donaldson was the weapons specialist, I believe. Sorry I can’t remember the names of the other Team members. At the time we were posted, there was only one tower. From there I directed the defense of the outpost. The attack on our outpost was intense, but is still a bit foggy…it was heavy and we took a number of casualties.

    I think we were the first MAT 30C Team sent to Trang Bom.. Were you assigned there later?

    • Later or it might be that the place I was at wasn’t Trang Bom (I don’t have a clear memory of the name like I do Long Thanh or Nhon Trach. Your answer says only one tower, but doesn’t say whether the rest of the site description sounds the same. I looked at a really good aerial I have of the location I had labeled Trang Bom and there are definitely at least three 2 level towers (Not positive on NE). I’m also sure if you were the 2nd officer there you weren’t on my team ….. I know for sure I was the 2nd officer when I was there :>). Given they hit both the compound and the companies in the villages plus on a different location hit a small RF/PF compound a little bit further out it doesn’t surprise me at all that they might have it that compound while another team was there. I would think we almost always had some team there since there were 2 companies plus the HQ group based out of that compound.

      • As I said before, our team was in Trang Bom February 1969. I know for certain the was only one tower because that’s what I climbed to view the direction of enemy fire. There was no other RF/PF unit nearby though at the time there was a SF mobile unit with mercenaries from Laos and Cambodia. In fact we got artillary support from them during the heavy attack on our outpost. What was your timeline, Don?

      • I joined Team 98 somewhere around the end of 68 and was with them until April of 70. I was in what I call Trang Bom, with a team for units protecting a bridge on a big river, with a team north of Long Thanh (and south of the road to Bear Cat), and at district HQ in Nhon Trach that I remember. It will be easier when I get the pictures digitized and people can see them and comment. There was no artillery support for “my” Trang Bom when we were hit – we got support from gunships out of Bien Hoa. I think the Aussies had primary responsibility for the area and remember an Aussie mech unit in the area.

      • Don…I think our paths had crossed….maybe it’s just faded memories that are getting us confused. I welcome our shared memories of Team 98 and Trang Bom

    • I found a couple of pictures where I actually put names on the back. The lead when I went to Trang Bom was 1st Lt Russell (was able to read his name tag). The medic on the team was Gilbert. I got some good aerial photos (after the attack naturally) and I can send a couple to you to see if we’re at least talking about the same place. Send your email to Don_Streicher@sbcglobal.net

      • Hi Don,

        I was in Bien Hoa 1971-72 4th Psy-Ops. I meet Lt Russell many years latter at vet center in Brockton, MA. He told me he was In Macv sog In 1970 he was a Group Called CORDS and Work out of the embassy in Saigon. Chris became a good friend of mine
        he passed on January 31, 2016.

      • Robert: Send me an address and I’ll send you a CD with all my pictures. They include many of the compound I believe was Trang Bom and also most of the team that was there when I was. That said some of my hardcopy pictures had Trang Bom written on the back and pictures I have shooting north across the street from the compound show a market with Trang Bom on the sign.

      • MAT III-9 “stood up” out of the Advisor School at Di An in September 1968. The original team members included 1LT Ken Bowder, SR. Advisor, 1LT James Smith, Deputy, SFC Royal Peterson, 11B, SFC Drew Phillips, 11C, and SP5 Ken Fleck, Medic. Translator was Mr. Houmg. Initial assignment was within the Tan Uyen Subsector at a small RF outpost. I believe the adjacent village was Trang Bon or Ban. The Tan Uyen DSA was a young ambitious Army Major. His deputy was a FSO. In late 1968 or early 1969 the team was augmented with PFC Joe Puschae and SP4 James Johnson. I believe both were 11Bs. I (Smith) left the team in April 1969 for a slot in a Duster / Quad 50 battalion in Northern I Corps.

  55. Well I finally located my old pictures and slides. Have to go through the slides (most of what I took), convert them and then upload them to my computer. Of the pictures I have an excellent one of Corky, and the Vietnamese Colonel from Nhon Trach along with two of his junior officers. I have a good aerial shot of my MAT team compound north of Long Thanh and of the Trang Bom location (old French Foreign Legion compound). I also have a complete group picture of my MAT team from north Long Thanh. I’m going to start scanning in the pictures and then I’ll sort through the slides and have a camera shop convert the ones I want to digitize to a CD. Easiest distribution might be to mail out CDs to those interested. I’ll post when I’m ready.

    • I was with MAT 30C at the Trang Bom outpost in February 1969. We got attacked pretty hard in the middle of the night of 23 February. I have a few black and white photos taken inside. I would be interested if you could share your photos of the that outpost

      • That was my first MAT team assignment and I was the #2 there if it’s the same place. The lead was a first lieutenant whose name I don’t remember. I have pictures of me, a young black sergeant with a mustache, a somewhat grizzled medic sergeant, and the 1st lieutenant. The compound was an old French foreign legion compound that was on the south side of the main road with the villages on the north side of the road. The battalion HQ was near the SW corner on the south wall. There were towers on all four corners and a big, mostly empty main building on the middle north side. The gate was on the east side. East was a rubber plantation headquarters with a priest house SE of our compound. West was an orchard with bee hives to our SW. South was all open paddy for a couple hundred yards. The attack hit the SW tower with 122s they laid on paddy dikes too close to arm. A 75 mm recoiless also hit the tower, but in the empty 1st level. Sappers hit the SE tower with and RPG, but it went between the levels and got the sandbags so the guards were OK and got them. Somebody flipped a 1 cubic foot charge over the fence from the road (north) side at the main building where the team lived, but the charges crimped and it never went off. One 122 hit the south wall at the roof line (there were apartments along that wall) and killed a soldier and his family there. I have pictures of the little girl from that family. It was after that attack I started my “career” doing special weapons. We built a frame and hung a 9 pod 2.75″ rocket pod aiming south loaded with Fluchette rounds. The smoke and fire were impressive, but it was inaccurate as hell. I got us spooky flares from Bien Hoa ammo and we mounted them out about 100+ yards with thermal grenades. And I got my first 7.62 mini gun and mounted it on an old 50 cal tripod with a 4000 round motorized ammo bay. Sound familiar?

    • Don: This is MSG Robinson. I was with MAT Team 45 and we were in Trang Bom district in Sept and October 1969. We were located in a French-built compound and I believe it was off Highway one in the Village Trang Dom. I have a article from the Overseas Weekly, dated 20 Sep 69, It was the Pacific Edition. It was about our Team performing security with a RF Company outside this Village. The engineers were clearing an area north of the village. The area was going to be a tank range, I believe for the Aussies. I know the the Aussies visit our team. Once the mines were cleared, we had a forward CP to keep the area secure. The reporter came to our team around the 19 Sept 69 with a platoon of the 11th Cav to renforce us because their was intell that we were going to be attacked which we were not aware of. Our forwared CP did receive some contact with the Viet Cong that night because we did get requests to fire illumination rounds, so our team and the 11th Cav provided motar support. I believe this is the French compound you are talking about. The village market was across the compound and their was a rubber plantation east of the compound. We went their to get water for the team. This is some memories of Trang Bom district. I know that the Advisor Team HQS in Bein Hoa was not happy that the reporter interview us without their permission. I heard that they joke about our next assignment would be on an island in the Dong Ni River where no buddy could interview us. Our next assignment was on the DongNi River but it was with another MAT Team to provide security on the Bridge to Siagon and Long Bein and do river search’s with the Vietemese Police and a RF Unit. I hope my memory is correct about the Village Trang Dom. That’s what the reporter wrote. MSG Robinson, RET.USA

      • There is no doubt that your description of the compound matches up to the Trang Bom I was at. I never mentioned it before, but the Aussies definitely worked that area a little while we were there with an armored/mech unit and I remember meeting them in or around the compound. Send me an address and I’ll send you the CD I made with the pictues. There are lots of pictures of Trang Bom’s compound and maybe you’ll remember some of the names of the team in the pictures since I’m embarrassed to say I don’t. My team also did the bridge site although I don’t remember it being an island…… I do remember it had electricity and an ice maker though :>).

        Regards,

        • Don: Thanks for the response and information about the compound in Trang Bom District. The bridge assignment required our team to build a team sleeping and living Qtrs which we did by scrounging from the Engineers in Long Bein, We even put a water tank attached to Siagon water supply for bathing. When we left the bridge to go back to Nohn Trach the Vietemese stripped the place down and sold the material on the market. The island threat was probably a small island on the Dong Ni located near Nohn Trach District, but it was only a joke from higher HQS. Yes, it would be nice to have a CD of the Trang Bom area. My address is Leonard Robinson,1813 75th St. East, Tacoma, Wa 98404 ; Thanks again Don, and take care. MSG Robinson,Retired,USA; MAT 45

  56. I was on Team 98 ’70 & ’71. I remember some of you; Fabiano, Trinkler & Byars. What ever happened to SGT. Bills?

    • Hey, I found some pictures I took of you too. Good thing I have photo software because they’re under exposed. You on the radio, on jeep with M60, with the AID guy in Nhon Trach. I’m going to cut CDs once I get everything digitized and I’ll make sure you get a copy.

  57. LTC (ret) Foster Oden,

    I was Executive/Operations Officer under LTC Kenneth Trinkler. I have very fond memories of Ron “Crash ” McCloud, Phil Parks, Al Fabiano (great poker player) among many others. After retiring in “76,I’ve resided in Dayton, OH (22 Yrs) and PHX, AZ (14 Yrs). Since DEC ’14 I moved to Acworth, GA (Atlanta area). Ph # 480-206-4156. E-mail fosteroden@msn.com

  58. Berls’ offer to send me pictures he had shamed me into starting to go through piles of pictures in my closet for ones I took. Anyone know of a good way to attach JPEGs to this chat forum if I scan some of them in? I also found some notes on the back of a couple and the old French Foreign Legion fort we worked out of east of Bien Hoa was in a town I labeled as Trang Bom. Searching for anything on Trang Bom I also read Heltsley’s account of his time. It added to my Team 98 memories and those of Ranger school in spring of 68 before I went over too. Sure was a long time ago.

    • It sounds like we may have just been one class apart at Ranger School, Don. I started in March 68 with Ranger 11 and finished in May. My time at Trang Bom was with the ARVN Regulars of the 48th Regiment, and we only stayed there a few days. When I joined them they were based in Cong Thanh at FSB Concord. By the time I finished with them and came to Team 98 I was pretty familiar with most of the territory east and north and Bien Hoa. The people on both Teams 87 and 98 were really a great bunch of guys, and I couldn’t have asked for better assignments. Its been really something to read the comments put here by the Team 98 people; I heard about a lot of those things, and met a lot of the people briefly but I guess, like most MACV assignments, we didn’t get to spend a lot of time together because as Advisors there were only a few of us in one place at one time,

  59. Donald, my email is dickberls@hotmail.com.
    If you will remind me in May I will be back in Colorado and will send you a picture of you and your jeep and minigun. An engineering marvel, no doubt.
    Seems I also remember the night the US unit got mortared in their NDP. Might not be the same time because the MAT team leader was there, under his jeep, talking on the radio when he got hit. I remember because he was so cool about it, basically telling the TOC he was going out on the next dustoff like no big deal. He told me later (I can’t remember his name) that he initially thought the US troops where throwing grenades off the berm for kicks and stood there for the longest time until the VC 60s started landing inside the berm.
    I also remember lots of funny things – my senior NCO and I were dragging some dead VC back to a Catholic village after an ambush one night. Illum going off, people upset at us, and he had one foot and I had the other. We’d drag and stop to rest, drag and stop to rest. At one rest stop he turned to the guy and said, ” if that hurts your back, we can flip you over.”
    I laughed so much the PRU NCO told me I was crazy and would I kindly shut up before I got us all killed. I still laugh thinking about that.

    • I think you have the right case where they got mortared. I remember the local MAT team was with them that evening so it’s quite possible he got hit and I don’t remember it. I thought I remember the team or maybe the engineers getting under some of the CATs for cover. The engineer company had stayed in that location more than one day (they usually moved) and they always did a mad minute at dusk so they provided sound cover for the VC to start the mortar attack unheard.

      I went back to school after I got out and got married/joined IBM in Illinois in 1973, then moved to San Jose CA in 1983 where I worked until I retired in 2012. Kids and grand kids all in the area so plenty of family around for my wife and I. Anybody visiting the bay area let me know and I’ll provide dinner and beer/wine.

    • I got the pictures. We were definitely there at the same time since that’s definitely me in one of the pictures with the jeep mounted mini-gun. I found some pictures of my team 98 time so far and they’re all from when I was MAT 2nd at Trang Bom or with the RF/PF HQ unit in the hamlets north of Long Thanh where I was MAT lead. Mine also vary in quality …. in some cases I think the heat damaged the film. I will dig a bit deeper in the closet because I know a lot of the ones I took were slides and I remember also converting a bunch of the slides to a CD some years ago. Once I get my collection together I’ll see who wants some…. and maybe see who can put names to some of the team members I have pictures of.

      • Don&Dick, I thought we were the only ones crazy enough to put a mini gun on a jeep. We tried the trailer and later we thought about a Lambretta. Dick, the story about the VC and hurting his back still has me laughing. I was in Qui Nhon Team 42 from Sept 69 to Nov 1970. We
        have very similar stories.

  60. Donald, I was the Mat team leader in Vung Gam, near the Rung Sat in Nhanh Trach. I know I have a picture of you and your jeep mounted mini-gun. I even think we fired it off my berm. I wonder how any of us have any hearing left.
    I am doing my snow bird thing in Palm Springs and the pics are in Denver. But, give me a couple of months and I will send it to you. Also, Ray and I corresponded a few years back and could remember some similar stuff – Buddi, Camaro (sp), Smith, etc. Amazing, after all these years how we can share long ago memories.
    I wonder if Davis is still around. I sure remember exciting ambushes with Davis.

    • Hey, good to see you on here, Dick. I still hope to make it into the Denver area one of these days. My wife lived there for quite a while, and graduated from Boulder High School. She is going to show me around that area some time when we can plan the trip. There ought to be plenty of time, since I’m “retired” now, but the city where I retired from as a cop keeps bringing me back iin as a “consultant” and its almost like working for a living again…

    • I’ll look through my pictures too. I kept having cameras stolen or damaged so I tried most of the major 35 mm cameras there….. was in the 101st before MACV. Did you have the team that accompanied the Engineer company when we cleared a Kilometer in all the way around and 12 square Kilometers around the center of the hot area in the southeast. They basically cleared 30 square Kilometers in 30 days. I was with them off and on during the work, but not with them the night they got mortared in there encampment. None of the MACV people got hurt, but don’t remember if the engineers had casualties or not. IT certainly dampened their enthusiasm for Nhon Trach though. A lot of times then…. some of them funny. I remember two of my NCOs on the MAT team went to BearCat to celebrate a sergeant major’s birthday. When they got back one of them looked like he had been on the losing end of a fight with a tiger. I asked the other what happened and he said all he knew was he was driving along and looked at an empty seat next to him and then back along the road at the sergeant rolling along the gravel road. Scratched up a bit, but no major damage done :>).

  61. Corky Godboldte was the black captain. Very good guy. The lieutenant who was killed near Bear Cat was Tom Buddi. He was cut in half by 40mm fire from the Bear Cat perimeter because the Thai lieutenant that took his ambush patrol report at the BC TOC didn’t bother to plot it on the map, then went off shift. That night when the radar picked up their movement it was assumed that it was enemy. Tom got on the radio and got them to stop shooting, but he had already been hit, and had to crawl to the radio pulling himself along with his hands because his legs were blown off. Smitty had Sgt. Cooney in the jeep with him when they hit that mine, and Cooney survived but died later in the hospital in Japan. If he had lived, he would have been blind and crippled.

    • Thanks for the quick reply. I liked Corky too ….. and he even took it in good humor when he returned from R&R and I told him his new jeep was toast and his driver was in the hospital (he was thrown out and I was thrown in so I ended up with just a bruised forearm and he ended up with exploratory surgery and 60 stitches). I knew Smith lightly and knew his driver had been wounded badly ….. and sat out on the road for most of the night because neither the Vietnamese nor Thai units were willing to travel out to the site that evening. Sorry to hear he didn’t make it. I knew some of the details of Buddi’s death, but you obviously were more involved. I know that of the 13 man ambush (as I remember the number) four died and all but one or two were wounded…… a rubber tree plantation doesn’t offer much protection. Now that I think about it I think he actually took over my team temporarily when I had the 30 day leave back home when I extended my tour so he was out wounded for about a month with a neck wound he got running an ambush in the far western hamlet edge of the hamlet’s my team’s locals protected. I ran like 6 ambushes around that hamlet while I was there and had contact every single time…. a couple times we kicked them out… a couple times they kicked us out. I’ll have to scan some of the photos I have in and see if people recognize the men in them. In the daytime we would go in with just a pistol and have lunch.

      • I was at the Bien Hoa TOC when Tom was killed. I was also the one that the CO sent to Long Binh to identify Smitty & Cooney because they didn’t know which one was which. I also had to go there when Leo Comano was brought in, because they thought at first he was a Vietnamese soldier since he wasn’t wearing his dog tags. Fortunately, they noticed that his name was written on the inside of his waist belt. I came to Team 98 in about mid-1969 after a field assignment on Team 87 with the 3/48th ARVN, and was assigned as Province Asst Operations Officer. I can tell you that Nhon Trach continued to be a hot spot. I took some mortar ammo down there to replace what one of the MAT Teams shot up the night before, and got right into the middle of a VC ambush site at Phu My 2. The VC ambushed a company of RTAVF Infantry that was northbound and we met them right in the kill zone. Got a Purple Heart and a VC rifle out of the deal (and a 3-day pass to Vung Tau.) I believe the VC unit in that area was the C-240, who affiliated themselves with the VC 274 Main Force (Dong Nai) Regiment.

    • The younger one was MAJ Beitz—close, Austin. Robert D. Collar was the SF-type that always wore a Bowie knife, hence his nickname.

    • I remember Maj. Collar well. He once chewed me out for not having clean boots when I came in from the field. I was on Team 98 from May ’70 – May ’71 as an Asst. Team Leader of Mat 45, then Team Leader of Mat 41, then a TOC officer for my last two months. Came out of the field and had to fly two Night Hawk missions a night. Frying pan to the fire. My Team Leader on Mat 45 was Jeff Nilsson with SFC Parker, Huddleston, & Stiles. My TOC SFC was the amazing A.O. Smith – one of the great poker players in Army history. Great to
      reconnect this way after all these years.

      Thanks for the memories,
      Bill Bentley, 1LT

      • Bill Bentley: I was on Mat 45 from Apr 69 to Apr 70. I was the medical Advisor. The team leader was Lt. Smith or Cpt Smith and their was a SFC Guizar on the team. I forget the Asst. Team leader name. When I left we were staying at the Ammo Depot, close to the Doung NI River. I would like to know, what happen to the team when I return to the states. If you would able to update me on the team after I left, I would appreciate it I see that you join the team in May. Thanks, MSG Robinson Ret.

        • MSG Robinson:
          I’m afraid that by the time I got to MAT 45 at the Ammo Dump (Tan Tuy Ha was the name wasn’t it?) the team had completey turned over. The Team Leader was 1LT Jeff Nilsson, with Dan Parker as Medic, SFC Slingerman as Heavy Weapons and Scrounger, Forrest Garner as Light Weapons and me as Asst. Team Leader. From there we moved to a jungle compound where SFC Garner was killed in a VC mortar attack. From there I went to Tan Uyen as Team Leader of Mat 41. Wish I could be more helpful, All best, Bill Bentley

          • Bill, I have yet to see anyone who was on Tm 98 in 1968. Do you know of anyone. As a matter of interest you can Google Valor Awards or Jack L. LeMar

            • Gentleman,I served in Nhon Trach for 10 months, July 67 to May 68 and then the remainder at the CORDS Office in Bien Hoa. Ron Rockwell, CORDS civilian

          • Bill: Thanks for the quick response. I appreciate the update on Mat-45. I am sorry to hear about you light weapons advisor SFC Garner. Our team lost SFC Bryant in Sept 69 because of jeep accident near Bear Cat. It really was hard for us. He was a great guy and comrade. My first time I was with him in a ambush, he was calm, cool and collected. We were able to kill one VC and capture his weapon. This was in NohnTrach district . I believe it was his third time in Vietnam and he was to rotate home in Dec 69. I always think about him and the team. We were a Band of brothers who look out for each other and make sure we accomplish our mission and return safety home. So, thank you Bill for the update and the best of luck in your life. I am in my early eighties now but had great life in the military. MSG Robinson, RET, USA

        • MAT 45 from May 70 to May 71; my introduction was a Roam Plow mission in the center to south part of Nhon Trach; I earned my CIB on the first day in the field; yes it was Cpt Smith and he left shortly after I arrived; the team was on the east side of the district in a small compound, then over to the west side in the French Outpost; then on the north side just east of the Catholic church; and finally back at Nohn Trach headquarters; I think Bill was with us at a contact on the south end of the province…a couple VC coming up out of the RSSZ. Nhon Trach had cooled down some by this time and in my year there I believe that I was in only five or six nasty situations, the worst of which was doing river duty north of the province where we ran into a VC base camp.

      • Hi Ya Bill – I just discovered this site…what a find. Seems to me that Stiles was killed shortly after you left us. A spent some time a few weeks ago looking at maps of Nhon Trach trying to find some of the points I remembered. Guess it’s been too long.
        regards,
        Jeff Nilsson, 1Lt

  62. Phil Park told me about this site and I’ve reviewed many of the comments. Some of you I remember, but not too many. Today is a very cold day here in Minnesota and I have some time to spend indoors.
    I served on Team 98 from about May 70 to Mar 71. Mike Legg and both left the same day on the same flight back to the states. I was the Asst S-3 assigned as the province TOC officer. There were 2 majors that I worked with, but can’t remember their names, one was the S-3 and I’m not sure what the other was, but he was a rather heavy-set guy. I mostly worked 12 hour shifts, day or night, monitoring operations, clearing fires for the artillery, naval gunfire, and air force bombing; and briefed the current situation at the morning team briefings using a folding province map board that we constructed to review all the incidents of the past 24 hrs. I didn’t get out into the province often, but remember going on jeep trips to the different districts during the day whenever I was able to. I was also the Artillery advisor and remember going to a district in the north with my counterpart to setup a 105 mm M101 artillery piece using an M1 aiming circle (a M1 compass on a tripod) with PSP all around us. I always worried about its accuracy with all that metal being present as it was. I also remember getting a number of boston whaler boats with outboard motors that we deployed on the river to patrol the river. I also remember having to scale a tall commo tower at the Vietnamese sector TOC to install an antenna, because I couldn’t talk anyone else into doing that (and I hate heights). We would also go on occasional flights with the air force TAC looking to support ground ops, and being reminded that if we got sick from all the circular motion that we would be cleaning up the cockpit. We also had evening flights of choppers on something called fire flys, in which one huey had machine guns. 20mm, and other weapons and the other chopper had a search light to spot ground movements (which made for a great target if we got too close to the ground). We had other officers and NCOs working in the TOC, but I can’t remember their names right now. I have been in contact with Phil, Lee Austin, and Mike Legg over the years. Mike, Lee and I all made it a career in the Army and occasionally were in touch while on active duty. I’m sure I will remember more at a later date and if I can ever find and unpack some of my old boxes, I may have more info that I could pass on. After spending more than 30 years in Northern Virginia in the Springfield area my wife and I retired in 2010 to our home here in Wyoming, MN living in the country north of the Twin Cities. If you’re ever in the area give us a call or write. My email address is glowaski@midco.net and my phone number is 651-462-0130.

  63. Ron, reading your post is like reading an Ian Fleming novel, pact full of action! E-mail your
    address to me and I’ll send you some pictures that I think you will enjoy.
    Al Fabiano

  64. Phil Park…I have smart phone w/ spell check; every place, I type VC. the phone types VA. Trang Bom Village was the VC. Strong hold; it bordered Xuan Loc. Province. When the war ended; the RVN and NVA had their biggest battles. Our PF/RF ew used

    • I (1Lt) and Captain Foggy and 3 NCO’s (Sgt Davidson and 2 others) were assigned to the outpost beside Trang Bom village in advance of 2nd Tet, February, 1969. The NVA hit us from 3 sides and we took many KIA and WIA. After an 8 hour battle, we finally were able to get dustoffs and a ARVN relief column. An “Eagle” force by chopper came in to provide reinforcement. We made it out.

  65. Phil Park….yes, there were about 4 accidents, as best, I remember. I was w/reaction force leaving Duc Tu District Hq.; Response to VA contact; I hit guy on motor bike. We Dusted him to US Med site. Returning from Tan Uyen, I ran through Ball Game, small arms across the road, passing PF outpost, I hit another guy on motor bike. There was suppose to be mine on left side of the road, I went right so did the motor bike. I dusted him off to US Med site. On road to Nhon Trach, Rhome Plows on same small road, put my jeep on embankment, as Plows past my jeep, they crease/smashed the side of my jeep. Mid night requisition fixed my jeep. Col. Trinkler, Sent me to view Vietnamese woodcutter truck and US Fuel Truck accident/ explosion. US soldier was burned to nothing. I Had flat tire, I was getting dark. I rode the flat to Long Thanh District. FOLKS wanted to know, why did’nt you fix the flat. No way, VA control the night. More SITREPS from Crash McLeod.

  66. I get warm fuzzy, whenever I read comments from Team 98 members. I roamed from Nhon Trach, Long Thanh, DiAn, Duc Tu, Cong. Thanh, and Tan Uyen Districts. Checking MAT Tm Loc’s. and monitoring Training of RF/PF soldier’s w/ my counterpart. It was a unique experience. Maj. Jim Addicott never recovered from the deaths of CPT Smith and SGT Cuny. LTC Foster Oden and I, maintain contact; he’s suffering w/Parkinson and some other exotic Vietnam diseases. I can help you find CPT Dong; I have contacts in Little Saigon in LA. Agent Orange got me; I contracted Presumptive Prostate and Colon Cancer; when I fell 20 to 30 ft from observation tower in DiAn District and damaged LT and RT rotator cuffs; I had myassive teas in both. I’ve had 5 major surgeries in past 4 years. The Duc Tu District. Chief and I on Cbt. Opn. w/ 11th ACR in the Trang Bom. Jungle Complex; we encountered command detonated mine; messed up my head/hearing. But I’m still. Above ground. God bless you all. SITREPS from Crash McLeod; Alfabiano can you send me that picture, you mentioned in your comments.

    • Crash, In case anybody is wondering about your nickname after the narrative above, wasn’t there also a jeep accident or two? Good to hear from you. I talked to LTC Oden; first time in 30 years.

  67. Hello,

    My name’s Scotty Burford. It’s so cool seeing you guys reunite from halfway across the country via the internet! My grandpa was Maj. John Shelby Burford. He was KIA in Nhon Trach District in ’67. I was just curious if any of you knew him, and/or have memories you’d be willing to share about him.

    And can y’all recall a Maj. “Yawn” serving in ’67? I have no clue how his name is spelled (but is sounds like yawn).

    Here’s some photos of Grandpa if it helps:
    https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B8X80o0BqShnZGUzLWtVZ1ZSbW8&usp=sharing

    Thanks in advance,
    Scotty

    • Hi Scotty…I just came across this web site the other day and noticed your post….I most certainly knew your grandfather and considered him a friend and mentor for the short time I knew him…we both arrived at team 98 around the same time July/aug 1967. He was still a captain I think at that time and I was a brand new 2lt. We were at the team hq ( a villa in Bien Hoa city) awaiting our assignments to one of the districts. We shared a hooch in the courtyard with, I think, 1lt Bob Pacheco and maybe Cpt Ron Hall….it was still rainy season and it flooded every afternoon. We had to make sure we left our gear on the bunks so it wouldn’t get wet. John was one of the few older guys that paid any attention to me, I was a little rebelious and got into it a little bit with a Ltc Johnson the team CO. John talked me down off my high horse and probably saved my career. John was sent to Nhon Trach as senior district advisor and not too long after was caught in an ambush in the early evening (I think0 driving back to district hq. Your Grandpa was a first class soldier and man. My daughter Leah was at the wall this spring and took a rubbing of John for me….if You friend me on facebook I’ll send you the picture….hope this helps a little bit__

      Curt Collis
      Deputy Senior Advisor
      Team 98
      Di An District

  68. Reading the comments brings back a flood of memories. I recognize some names but after 44 years the memory fades. I was the S-5 officer for MACV Team 98 from Nov.69 to Nov.70. I got the assignment to MACV Team 98 because of Maj. Dippolito. I served with him for two years as a NATO advisor in Italy. As I got off the plane in Ton Son Nhat airport he was waiting for me. He had my orders changed. Very lucky. I have fond memories of LTC. Trinkler, he was a good leader and a better person. I believe he was the first person I heard say “Don’t let your alligator mouth overload your humming bird ass”!
    I played a lot of poker with LTC. Odem. He was a good man and a lot of fun. He loved his music. The 5th Dimension, Blood Sweat and Tears! LTC. Mc Leod was the real deal. I have a picture of him looking mighty tough on some remote site.
    My only regret was that I never kept in touch with some of the people I met there. I got out of the Military in ’71 after a year on General Staff at Ft. Sill.
    I have tried to find my Vietnamese counterpart Capt. Dong. I live in Laguna Niguel, Ca and we have a very large Vietnamese community about 30 miles north called Little Saigon. It could be the largest such community in the country. But, so far no luck.
    I learned a lot in the year I spent in Viet Nam both about myself and the world. The one thing I learned for sure was to be against war.

    • Al, It’s great to hear from you. Do you still have the shirt with the VC footprint from your engagement when you got the Bronze Star? I have a great picture of you and Mike Legg, whom I see every couple months. The two of you were sitting on the steps at the Villa looking very serious, and both wedding bands were quite visible. It’s a poignant picture. What others don’t know is that you were discussing the World Series. I still remember the 0700 briefings when your civilian, was it Ed, would say there was a “spontaneous” demonstration in support of the government yesterday in whatever-village. get in touch and I’ll send you the pic. Phil

  69. My husband Lt Dana Keith Davis was an Advisor from 1968-69 does anyone remember him?
    Second tour 1971- he was a Cpt and pilot of a U-21.

  70. I was DSA in Di An District in 1969; Sr. RF/PF Advisor in 1969; DSA at Duc Tu District in 1970. Conducted combat operations in Trang Bom. Jungle Complex against VA and Elements of Donğ. Nai. Near Xuan. Loc. Border. Best District. Staff headed by FSO Brook Holmes. and 1st LT Mike Cuicevich; many others; will submit names later. LTC Foster Oden moving from Phoenix AZ to Atlanta GA. in Dec 2014. Glad you mentioned LTC Trinkler expired in 1980. Many of us wanted to know his status. My interpreter SGT Ngo Van Quy now lives in CA; we keep in touch. LTC Jim Addicott died of cancer in 1994; finest Officer I have ever known. Traveled to all Districts in Bien. Hoa Province.

    • I remember you, Ron. You were an Opns Advisor on the team when I was working the TOC there. You were a good example to the other members of Team 98. I loved LTC Trinkler, he seemed more like a Father than a C.O. Jim Addicott was one of the TAC Officers at my ROTC Summer Camp, and I thoroughly enjoyed seeing him work in his district, which I believe was Long Thanh. I’m glad to see that you made it out okay and finished your career.
      Ray Heltsley, MACV Team 98, 1969-70.

    • I was 2nd and lead for teams in Bien Hoa for most of 69 and then #3 for the Nhon Trach district team. I remember the Long Thanh locations well, but we were also out east (as I remember it) of Bien Hoa maybe 25 K at a town with two Vietnamese companies that got hit pretty hard. I don’t remember the village name and thought you might. We also had a short stint at the team site that guarded one of the bridges (think it was the Nha Be)…. had 1-2 whalers with outboards and a swamp glider the previous team had gotten from the 9th Infantry when they pulled out.

      Regards, Don Streicher

    • LTC McLeod,

      “Major McLeod” is a very familiar name to members of our large 3-generation Vietnamese family! As far as I can remember, almost every time we sat down and talked about Vietnam and the past, we talked about you. I was only 10 years old in Bien Hoa 1970 and I think I saw you twice, once during a party and another time when you came to our home. My youngest sister, born in 1971, was a recipient of a box full of nice children clothing from Mrs. McLeod. Julie, now a pharmacist in Tulsa, was able to keep one of the beautiful towels until she left Vietnam in 1990.

      I hope you remember my dad, LTC Tam Thanh Huynh, ARVN, Bien Hoa 69-74. He is now 86 and has to use a walking cane when going out but otherwise in relatively good health. He lost everything after the war but I think what he misses the most now is his photo album of his army life. Last year, I found and showed him a picture of CPT William Nichols who was killed in action in Binh Dinh 1965. He looked at his battalion advisor for a while and said nothing but “that’s him”. We all knew there was a lot going on inside him.

      I am glad to finally found you here at this website. My dad would be thrilled to know that after 44 years you are doing just fine and would love to get in touch with you again!

      Regards,
      Phong Huynh

  71. Nancy, I remember your grandfather very well. He was the mess sergeant during my entire tour. Our commander, COL Trinkler, actually talked him into extending for six months. SGT Byars’ greatest concern was how to break the news to his wife. One Sunday every month, we would have a Team Day. I would make a run to Cat Lai to buy many sandbags full of crabs. Your grandfather would cook them up, and Team members from all the units in the boonies would come in to feast under a parachute we hung over the area for shade. He was such a great mess sergeant, his biggest problem during an IG inspection was to figure out how to hide all the steaks he really wasn’t authorized.

  72. I’m trying to search for my grandpa and was wondering if anyone here knew him. My grandpa was named Clarence Byars and he served from 1969-1970 on team 98 in Bien Hoa, my grandma told me that he was a cook. If you know any other cooks during that time that would be greatly appreciated or if you can point me to anyone that can help.

    • Nancy: Your grandfather was the only US cook on Team 98. He had several VN cooks that worked for him but we had no other GI cooks. Your granddad served up some mighty fine chow.

  73. I was advised that Agent Orange spraying (from the air) occurred in Bien Hoa Province during 1968 – 1969. In fact, I could smell it during that time.

  74. I filed an Agent Orange Claim as well. Exposure is presumptive in VN. Only needed date of service there. I was October 70-71

    • Mr. Cooper: I was a civilian interpreter at the MACV/CORDS hqtrs in Bien Hoa City, nearby was the Rambleau (?) U.S. housing compound. I was mainly assigned on road trips with the Team 98 CivilAffairs advisors during 1969, 1970 n part of 1971. Best wishes.

  75. Does anyone remember me? I was SSGT Gene Roberts. My nickname is cowboy. If anyone out there served with me and can remember details of dates and times of any casualties or incidents that happened, please contact me. I am working on my VA claim and would be more than happy to assist anyone else with their claims as well with a buddy statement. I was on teams 7,12,and 33 during the years of 1965 -1969. I was a heavy transportation advisor. I was in a foxhole with Dennis Weaver around 1968 while I was in and out of the MACV Advisors school in Dion, about 30 miles from Siagon and Long Bein when he was KIA. It was during the Monsoon Season.

    • Like Lee Austin I remember being at one place I thought was called Dion which was east of Bien Hoa. It was an old French Foreign Legion fort of sorts with walls all the way around and a big house sort of in the middle. The road went right by on the north side and the bulk of the village was north of the road. The ground immediately south of the fort was open. There was an old French plantation set of buildings to the east and an orchard and set of bee hives to the west. Sound familiar?

    • We had a Sergeant Gene Roberts in Nhon Trach (Autumn 67). He was wounded in an ambush, leg wound. After he was patched up at the hospital he was transferred and I lost track. Was that you? Ron Rockwell USAID Deputy.

  76. John Meigs, I’m pleased to hear from you. It was COL Trinkler who passed away; Legg and I had dinner with him; Mike lives in Carlisle. Send me a note to phil-dot-park-643-at-verizon-dot-net, John. I’d like to catch up some more. As for Leighton Yates, I remember that he came into Team 98 HQ after 11 months of doing night ambushes, in Cong Thanh with MAJ Latham, I think. When he got to the Villa, he was so relieved and did so little that his self-winding wrist watch stopped. He earned it after his first 11 months, but I can’t tell anyone younger than us about it; they don’t get it.

  77. John Meigs, I served from Jan 1971 to Dec 71. Phil you were adjutant when I arrived and Bill Gorman extended and replaced you. I remember Mike Legg and was sad to hear of his early death. The only members of the team I had any contact with after leaving service were Porter Dillon and Leighton Yates both of whom became lawyers..Maj Dillon a prosecutor in Indiana (retired to Florida) and Yates practicing in Orlando. I returned to my civilian job with Los Angeles County and attended law school at night on the G I Bill. I practiced criminal law and recently retired after 25 years as a Superior a Court a Judge. John Meigs CPT, MI

    • Dear John:

      It’s good to see your post. I am still a full-time lawyer, though at almost 70 (less than two months) I am starting to wind down. I know we exchanged calls without connecting a few years ago, and I knew you were a judge (though I just found out that you retired). I am still with Holland & Knight (where I have been since Holland & Knight acquired my old firm 18 years ago), and you can read about me on our website, hklaw.com. As you may know, our firm has offices in both Los Angeles and San Francisco, among many other places.

      Is the lawyer with your name who now practices entertainment law in Beverly Hills your son? I seem to recall that he formerly practiced with Pillsbury, Latham, or one of the other giant firms that started in California. Please don’t hesitate to give me a call.

      Leighton

  78. Yes, Gus, they all occurred between 23 July and 21 December 1969. No, I didn’t stay in the Army after my six year commitment was up. But. I did have to do almost two years active reserves. After 34 years, I retired from the Wrigley Company at age 60 (that was ten years ago). With my sons moving out of the Chicago area (one in Seattle, the other in Houston), I decided to relocate to Hawaii.

  79. Does anyone know or remember my interpreter Le Van Tran? He and his family lived near Bien Hoa City. Le was an ARVN Marine, but was assigned interpreter duties with me

    • Mr. Barshes:
      What year did he serve as your interpreter ? I worked as an interpreter for the MACV advisors years 1969, 70 and 70 at the Bien Hoa MACV compound. There were 3 of us, the vietnamese man ( name I couldn’t recall) ms. Hien and I. My assigned advisors were Lt. Cleveland and Lt. Earl Williams. Do you remember or know Lts. Cleveland or Williams ? I have been trying to find and reconnect with them to no avail. I will try to find out about your interpreter, Mr. Tran. My uncle was a vietnamese colonel in Bien Hoa during 1965 to 1975 and actually knew most, if not all the interpreters as he was the liaison between the VNese military and the U.S. Advisors.

      • Mr. Gard, My office manager in Team 98 headquarters was Nguyen Dinh Nghi. Did you know him? Can you tell me if he made it to the States? I know he had a son or daughter in Texas. Also, two of the people who worked in the office were Miss Thinh and Ba Goung, who was married to a VN F-4 pilot. Do you know anything about them?

        • Mr. Park: if I recall correctly, the head of the administrative office at MACV Bien Hoa City was an American civilian. He may have a VNese staff working for him but I was often on the road with my advisors, I only ducked my head briefly into his cramped 2nd floor office to pick up my monthly salary. Best wishes.

      • I was with Team 98 from June 1968 to June 1969 and assigned most of that period to the RF Administrative and Logistics Company and Sgt. Lee was attached to my Team there. I do vaguely remember the names Lt. Cleveland and Lt. Williams, but not 100% sure of that. I’ll try a name search on Earl Williams and see if I come up with anything.

      • Come to think of it, I may have gotten my interpreter’s name wrong. It could be Sgt. Le Van Xuan. Sorry for the confusion.

    • Mr. Barshes: I will check with my uncle, Col. Tam of the RVN army, if he recall the military interpreters assigned to Team 98. There were not many of them so I hope he remembers. If anyone knows, he will as he co- ordinated all the U.S. Advisors, military and civilian, to their VNese counterparts for CORPS III. I served at the MACV/ CORDS hqtrs in Bien Hoa City years 1969, 70 and couple of months 71. I was a civilian interpreter assigned on road trips with my advisors, Capt. Chuck Gilmer, Lts. Earl Williams and Cleveland of the Civil Affairs unit. We travel to hospitals, schools, orphanages and war damaged reconstruction sites in the surrounding districts besides locations in Bien Hoa City. Also serving our team was Daniel Formby. I think he was a linguist. I have brief contacts with Lt. Cleveland in 1971 in the US. I wish to find these gentlemen to thank them for their kindnesses to me while I served them. They were so instrumental in my love for America and becoming a proud American. I urged my children and grandchildren to join the U.S. military and serve our country due to the wonderful acts of kindness I observed from my advisors to the VNese people. Best wishes, sir, and thank you for your military service.

  80. John Paul Lyle: John, it just struck me that our time in Nhon Trach pretty much coincided. I’m pretty sure I have a picture or two of you somewhere packed away in a cardboard box that I’d gladly share with you. If you are who I think you are.

    I was with MAT III-9 in the village of Vung Gam. I replaced Dick Knight as team leader and was involved in the building of the outpost at Vung Gam. I only remember one civilian in Nhon Trach district and I suspect it was you. Here, this will test your memory. Did you wear a hat that had a Nhon Trach advisor patch sewn on the top of it?

    I, too, remember SFC Davis. When I first arrived in the district, my boss, Dick Knight was on light duty from recent wounds while with the Americal Division and had just returned from a Tokyo hospital. He was later KIA on his second tour in 1971.

    So as the team was being formed, I spent a couple of exciting weeks with Davis and the local PRUs. Davis lived for enemy contact and it always made him very happy and excited when it happened. Personally, it always scared me to death. It seemed to me at the time he was on his 47th tour, or something like that. A real warrior who was very good at being a warrior. I remember him telling me one time in the middle of some ambush that if I stood up like that again I was going to get killed and “my wife would klick her heels when she got my GI life insurance.”

    If this strikes a cord, let me know and I’ll dig into a cardboard box or two and remind you what you looked like so long ago.

    Dick Berls

  81. David, you still have my email address? Drop me a note, I have a few photos of us in our youth and would be curious as where you wound up after the ammo dump assignment. Good to hear from you, last I heard you were recovering from an auto accident.

    • Dick, I have moved a couple of times over the last 6 years…back in Tempe, Arizona now. My e-mail address has changed and I no longer have yours
      …I am at naugle@att.net. I was back to work after a few months after my accident but finally retired in 2010. Still looking for something to keep me busy….

  82. I have no idea how I stumbled onto this site. I was team leader of MAT III -9 from probably summer/fall ’69 to 4/70 and Naugle was my replacement. I do recall some of the names mentioned – Godbolte, Davis. Sat on a few ambushes with SFC Davis and our merry band of PRUs.

  83. I served as a Mobile Advisory Team Leader in Nhon Trach District from 9-69 to 7-70. MAT 9 which for a while was located near the village of Vung Gam.

    • Dave: I was assigned to Team 98 from May 1970 to May 1971. Some ot the my comrades at Province were Phil Park, Adjutant, Harvey Glowaski, Asst. S-3 Advisor, Mike Legg, S-2 Advisor, and Tom Weissenger, Team S-4. I was the RF/PF Advisor, following MAJ McCloud, but my main job as assigned by LTC Trinkler was to act as his liaison with Districts and MATs. I was on the road every day visiting each MAT and District and carrying back complaints and suggestions to LTC T, as well as assesments on morale. I’m sure I visited your team many times between May and your rotation in July. I also subbed for the Nhan Trach Deputy Military Advisor for a couple of weeks while he was on emergency leave (or maybe R&R). I don’t remember his name. Where was MAT 9 located? I don’t remember the village of Vung Gam. Was it on the East or West side of Nhan Trach? Were you by chance co-located with the RF artillery section on the West side or the last outpost on the East side? Perhaps the outpost located on the North side South of the road to Vung Tau? The only name I remember from Nhan Trach is is the District Chief, COL Bich. It’s hell getting old isn’t it?

      • Good to see several of my comrades names mentioned above. I often wonder where they are now, LTC KennethTrinkler, LTC Fred D’Ippalito, LTC Foster Oden, MAJ “Crash” McCloud, CPT Lloyd Collins, CPT Sherry Myers, lSG Jack Bills, SSG John Turk, Mr Nhei(sp?) my counterpart, and many others…my memory has faded considerably. I was assigned as the Team’s Administrative/Executive Officer during the period Jul69~Jul70 and was replaced by a CPT P..could have been Phil Park, not sure, sorry don’t remember his last name since I departed shortly after his arrival. Cloyce D. Crawford II, Captain, AGC, Retired thecrawfordz@sbcglobal.net

      • I was very proud to serve as the adjutant at Team 98 beginning in July 1970. LTC Trinkler assembled an exceptional team and did not tolerate so-so performance. From the officers I knew at Team 98, I count three O-6s: Lee Austin, Mike Legg, and Harv Glowaski; and at least two generals: Ron Helmly and Mike Byrnes. I stayed in touch with COL T for a few years. Mike Legg, the S-2, and I had dinner with him one evening in the mid-70s when he was at the War College. After he retired, he served as an infantry trainer in Saudi Arabia. Sadly, he passed away of a heart attack sometime before 1980. I also had a couple phone conversations with LTC Oden after our tour, but have lost track of him.

      • Lee,

        Vung Gam was at the very south of the District…right next to the start of the Rung Sat. We never had many visitors there. Dave Naugle

    • Hi Gus, this is Warren Barshes. We overlapped our assignments for a few months in early 1968. I was the S-1 Advisor to the Regional Forces Logistics and Administration Company at Bien Hoa City. At the second Tet offensive in February, 1969, I was assigned to MAT-30C as Assistant Team Leader at Trang Bom. The attack on that village and our outpost resulted in VA service-connected multiple disabilities. I’m living in Honolulu, Hawaii now and maybe we can re-connect. Hope you’re doing well. Are you connected with any of our other contemporary advisors?

      The year 1969 was a big loss for Team 98. We lost 6 team members, including Cpt. Frank Wallenbeck, 1Lt Len Caamano, Sp4 Jim Rogers (RTO). Sfc Sol Bryant (RTO),Spc5 Bill Larson (Medic), and Sgt, Gary Smith (Intel).

      • Hi Warren. I left country in late May of 1968 so I wasn’t around for the losses in ’69. As best I can remember there were no losses of life during my 10 1/2 months with Team 98. I do remember you and I (and maybe several others) going into Saigon and spending some time on Tudo Street one evening.

        I live in St Louis (where I was born and raised) and have recently reconnedcted with a couple of our team mates. Clem Ward lives in Stillwater, Ok. and Jack Scherbert is out west somewhere. Did you stay in the military after VN?

        My e-mail address is gengelland@att.net if you want to converse by that means. Great to hear from you.

      • Warren, I had my dates all screwed up. I was in country from July, 1968 until May, 1969. I don’t remember the casualties you mentioned–did they occur late in ’69?

  84. I was a Air Force Radio Operator assigned to work forward Air Control in Support of Team 98. I was only assigned for Six months at Bien Hoa and the other Six months in Country was with the 2nd Bde., 1st Inf. DIV. working Forward Air Control in support of the American Army. Advisory Team 98 was located down town in Bien Hoa City. While I was with the 1st Inf. DIV. we moved from Bair Cat after three months to Division Headquarters at Di An. This assignment was from 1966 – 1967. All total I served four tours in Vietnam, One in the Army and Three in the Air Force.

  85. OK, thoughtless me, I FUBARed the renaming of Bien Hoa Province. It is now Dong Nai Province.

    I incorrectly mentioned Phong Dinh Province because I spent 18-months operating out of Can Tho, the capital city of IV CTZ, located in PDP. Therefore, PDP just came to mind as a reflex thought. Sorry ’bout that!

    For the record, Nhon Trach District was a “fun” assignment back in the mid “60s. Half the district was contested territory, requiring a battalion size unit to enter VC territory. Our way in and out of the district was either by aircraft or by ferry boat crossing the Nha Be River. The southern portion of the district bordered on a vast mangrove swamp, designated the Rung Sat Special Zone. In Vietnamese it is known as the Forrest of Assassins, in English its the Killer Jungle. The RSSZ served as a haven for the VC, being used as their R&R center. It was also used as a collection point for men and supplies that moved from the swamp to the Saigon Capital Region. We knew when Charlie was on the move because he mortared the hell out our compound to keep us pinned down. Where have all the good times gone?

    • Thanks for describing the Rung Sat. I lived on the edge in a triangular shaped out post with RF Forces for 6 months. We lived next to a small village named Vung Gam. The area had been totally defoliated to prevent VC from using it to move into the Saigon area again…..

      • Do you remember the date of this spraying of Agent Orange? I was not far from there during that spraying. I need the date for my VA claim. The website that I listed below is an advocate that is helping me and others with our claims and lives in GA. If anyone has any info please contact him. He will be more than happy to help you with your claims to the VA as well.

  86. MACV Team 98 was located in Bien Hoa Province, III CTZ. The province was composed of 6-districts.

    Yours truly was Senior District Advisor in Nhon Trach District for 6-months and then province S-4 advisor flor the remaining 6-months. Tour period was Jun ’66 to may ’67.

    Although Bien Hoa City continues as before, the province name has been changed to Phong Dinh (trusting I have this correct).

    • I was a Deputy District (Civilian) Senior Adviser in Nhon Trach from February 1969 until about June/July 1979. At the beginning of this period, Nhon Trach remained a bit dangerous: we had a VC battalion operating in the District, which overran some of our outposts, and from time to time the District Capital, where we had our camp was mortared. All this stopped after Cambodia, and we were blissfully (boringly?) secure until my departure in mid-1970. On my second tour, I was assigned to III Corps as the Political Adviser. I briefed regularly at General Mike Davis staff meetings and traveled to all the provinces in III Corps. I will never forget one of our sergeants in Nhon Trach, Sergeant Lyndsey Davis, a real warrior and a great guy. I remember fondly my time integrated in to the MACV Team 98 at Nhon Trach and at Bien Hoa. One more point: When I returned for a visit to Vietnam in 1996, I stopped by the Military Museum in Hanoi-apart from the strange feeling of wondering around Hanoi, I remember learning at the Military Museum that in 1975, just before the North finished off the South, their forces shelled Tan Son Nhut and other points in Saigon from Nhon Trach District!

      • Dear John,
        How could you be there in 1979? Were you working with the NVA? I am joking, and believe that it was only a typing mistake! did you mean 1969?
        At that time I was working on MACV Team 64 as an interpreter, but my home was in Long Thanh District ( Nhon Trach Long Tan is a village of Nhon Trach District – 5km from Long Thanh Distict.)
        Take care
        Van Hieu

      • You and I were there at the same time I believe. I was the 3rd in line behind you and a black Captain. I always remember he told the story of landing a fixed wing with brakes on and flipping himself out of the aviation program. I always remember riding in his jeep one day while he was on R&R and having his driver run off the road and total it out. I had team in Long Thanh before getting the district military posting so I was in the area most of 1969 and guessing I moved down to Nhon Trach for the end of 69 and 70 up to when I left in early April. Do you remember the other Captain’s name… or have links to him? I vaguely remember 2 MAT teams in the district then…. one at the south eastern end of the controlled section and one about in the middle of the northern part (they had a ground mounted 40 MM gunship gun mounted on an artillery like mount. I think I remember Sgt Davis. If he was a thin, mustached guy he had a jeep with a 50 cal mounted on it at the time I had a jeep with a 7.62 gattling mounted and we used to run some night ambushes with the two jeeps on a hill and sound probes on a trail below along with a squad of Vietnamese. I remember my counterpart in Long Thanh hitting a mine on the way to visit the team in the rubber tree plantation east of Long Thanh (Cpt Smith). I remember my MAT team stand in while I went on R&R getting lightly wounded for most of the time I was gone and then getting killed in a friendly fire fiasco because they set up an ambush site in the rubber tree plantation too near Bearcat and the Thai units opened up on them (Remember it being Thai although might have been Korean). I haven’t kept touch with anyone I hate to say and really don’t remember the names of the people on my team although I do have a few pictures.

        Regards, Don Streicher LT & Cpt Team 98 1969-April 1970

      • Hello John,
        My name is Ronald Rockwell. I was Deputy District Senior Advisor in Nhon Trach from July 67 until May 68 when I was transferred to a desk in Bien Hoa. I remember Sgt Davis well. He came over from a Civic Action unit. He loved WAR! I believe he was mostly Cherokee Warrior! He probably thought Nhon Trach was the “Best Goddamn Training He had ever had!”
        PS I think you and I crossed paths at the US Embassy Bonn in 81-84??

    • Dick…What was Nhon Trach District Like during your term?

      John…I was there about the same time you were there but I don’t remember you…Wasn’t Captain Godbolte sp? , the military adviser than?

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