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Chu Lai: After Action Report

This is a discussion on Chu Lai: After Action Report within the Your War forums, part of the Armed Services category; Sometime in Sept. '66 our firebase was attacked one night by a few sappers and 60mm mortars. We took three minor casualties and one of ...


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Old January 8th, 2017, 09:57 PM   #1
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Chu Lai: After Action Report

Sometime in Sept. '66 our firebase was attacked one night by a few sappers and 60mm mortars. We took three minor casualties and one of their's was KIA. Turns out the KIA was known to us and worked as a barber in one of the local villages.

1st photo shows damage to one of the motor pool equipment tents. Nobody was in the tent during the attack. You can see a couple of M14s carried by the rubber-neckers.

2nd photo shows two satchel charges and some shell casings that we found in the wire the next morning. None of the VC made it through the wire.

3rd photo shows some more VC shell casings that we picked up with the satchel charges. Among them were a few rounds that hadn't been fired. Another casing (on the right side) had been fashioned into a crude knife.

4th photo shows the SNCO tent where one of the SNCO's didn't bother locating the door when the mortar rounds struck. He banged his face up a bit, probably on that powder canister near the door.

5th photo is yours truly trying to figure out if my timed exposure is going to work on my new camera. The doll hanging over my head isn't mine if you're wondering. You'll notice though, while the SNCO's had a hard backed tent, we had to do without such luxuries.
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File Type: jpg Oct_66_3_adj.jpg (147.1 KB, 92 views)
File Type: jpg Oct_66_4_adj.jpg (146.6 KB, 81 views)
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Old January 8th, 2017, 11:39 PM   #2
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Very interesting photos. About 19 there were you? Thanks for posting this.

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Old January 8th, 2017, 11:59 PM   #3
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My 20th birthday was the end of August, just a week or so earlier. I'd bought a Minolta SRT101 35mm SLR in Hong Kong on R&R just a week or so before my birthday. Most of its capabilities were still hidden from me, but I was learning slowly.

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Old January 9th, 2017, 03:18 AM   #4
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Great photos.
Funny, all the guys with dolls say the same thing.
No problem, it got you home.
Sept '66 I had been out of boot camp a few months and enjoying electronics school in Millington,Tenn just outside Memphis. Been married all of a month.
Enjoyed my 19th and 20th birthdays at Chu Lai. '67 and '68.
This was on my 19th birthday October '67 at Chu Lai. We lived in luxury, no tent by this time. Thanks for making Summer camp possible.



Our opponents liked to dig swimming pools for us with 122 and 140 mm rockets in the middle of the night. Has a way off getting you moving in a hurry when the incoming siren starts to sing.



We even had a shower.



A church, and in the foreground multiple shitters and urinals. What more could a Marine ask for? Home away from home.



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Old January 9th, 2017, 06:23 AM   #5
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My battalion, MCB 3, had just returned from deployment in Chu Lai in '66, when I joined them in early '67 in California.

http://www.seabee-rvn.com/RVN-Cruise...-Lai/i-RGhTL43

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Old January 9th, 2017, 06:29 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4Quangs View Post
Sometime in Sept. '66 our firebase was attacked one night by a few sappers and 60mm mortars. We took three minor casualties and one of their's was KIA. Turns out the KIA was known to us and worked as a barber in one of the local villages.
4Quangs, . . . just curious, . . . was the barber the guy who spotted the distances for their NVA mortar team?

Guy I used to hang with told that story, barber always "marched" into the camp each day, . . . seemed to "march" to the different buildings & emplacements.

They finally figured out he was plotting distances and locations for the mortar boys, . . . somebody just up and shot him one day as I recall, . . . but he might have gotten whacked in an attack.

But anyway, . . . thanks for the pics, . . . laughed at the first one, . . . there goes a M14 on the guy's shoulder in the bottom right corner.

May God bless,
Dwight

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Old January 9th, 2017, 06:40 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by 4Quangs View Post
Sometime in Sept. '66 our firebase was attacked one night by a few sappers and 60mm mortars. We took three minor casualties and one of their's was KIA. Turns out the KIA was known to us and worked as a barber in one of the local villages.
Those Damn Barbers!



After the Camp Evans(I Corps)Ammo Dump was Rocketed/Mortared and Totally Destroyed(1968)Army 'Intelligence' discovered that the Camp Barber was really an NVA Captain!
Barbers see things, they hear things, they 'pace' around without arousing suspicion... Who Knew ?


Among a lot of other things...I think it shows how Arrogant(Stupid!)the U.S. Military too often was in Vietnam...
Under-estimating the Enemy...
Over-estimating Our Own Capabilities to fight a Guerilla War...
Generally allowing Chaos to overwhelm Order!

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Old January 9th, 2017, 06:48 AM   #8
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We even had our own volunteer fire department with tanker.


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Old January 9th, 2017, 06:53 AM   #9
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Hey man thank you for your service first off and thanks for the pictures and history lesson. I feel like it is an honor when one of you guys share your experiences with the rest of us . I guess one of the reasons I like the M14 rifles so much is the historic significance of the design but all of that would just be a foot note in history if it wasn't for the men who carried and used them . Thanks 4Quangs and the rest of you guys sorry I didn't put in each name but I guess I got so into the pictures and stories I forgot to do that so I had to go back and edit . The stories you guys have are important and need to be told also did any m14s with synthetic stocks get into service in Vietnam and if so how did they workout.It seems to me like the story of the m14 is almost parallel to the guys that used it in battle ,powerful,capable,adaptable but now almost forgotten .

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Old January 9th, 2017, 06:57 AM   #10
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We even had our own volunteer fire department with tanker.

I don't remember ever seeing a hootch with awnings before. That's livin' high!

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Old January 9th, 2017, 09:15 AM   #11
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I don't remember ever seeing a hootch with awnings before. That's livin' high!
You got that right. We were in the high rent district.

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Old January 9th, 2017, 09:20 AM   #12
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You got that right. We were in the high rent district.
I see the door looks insulated. People don't realize how cold it got in VN in the winter. I "found" a goose down sleeping bag, used it, and we had oil heaters in our huts.

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Old January 9th, 2017, 09:56 AM   #13
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I see the door looks insulated. People don't realize how cold it got in VN in the winter. I "found" a goose down sleeping bag, used it, and we had oil heaters in our huts.
I must have been in a different part of the country. Door just has waterproofing on it. It was always hot where I was.


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Old January 9th, 2017, 10:28 AM   #14
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Old January 9th, 2017, 10:41 AM   #15
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I see the door looks insulated. People don't realize how cold it got in VN in the winter. I "found" a goose down sleeping bag, used it, and we had oil heaters in our huts.
The insulation was just so the Air Conditioning kept the Hooch Mama San comfortable while cleaning up after those Gyrenes!



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