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C-130 Crew and Maitenance TDY to Vietnam


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From Naha in 65-66 when I went in country as c/c I had orders to go for 21 days with variations as necessary.

We had a shuttle from TSN to Bangcok with stops at other bases in VN and Thailand. Sometimes we would stay

longer and sometimes we would be too broken down to last a week.

Before leaving I went to Bangcok in a maint. detachment  that serviced all C-130,s in SEA. I was there when I got orders to go back to Naha to process out. That was 50 years ago  Nov 8 1966. I got out Nov 18 1966.

There was about 25 of us from different bases.

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JimH....great pics. I'm not sure when ops moved us CCK folks from TuyHoa to TSN. Before CCK I was in 2APS at Sewart. Most of our post tour LMs in the squadron shuttled out of Tuy Hoa. I got to CCK in May 1970 and we were working out of TSN. We lived in the Merlin Hotel. Half way through my tour they moved us on base. The shuttle to the Hotel was an adventure. But it was nice to have a somewhat safe city to hang out in when not flying. The Merlin had a nice roof top to hang out on. My only time at CRB was leaflet drops. Not my favorite mission. I had a cool Nav that we called "Woodstock". We would hang out at the beach. At night he would loan me his Flight Jacket with his 1st LT bars and sneak me in the officers club...Naturally "they" had better stuff than our "No Hab" snack bar. Everybody had a "No Hab" snack bar....Remember when you ordered a cheese burger..."No Hab Cheese"....OK, then give me a BLT....."no Hab bacon"...Left base to final...   

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On ‎11‎/‎16‎/‎2016 at 8:16 AM, Sonny said:

I may be wrong but I thought there were some MX troops that were PCS to Nam.

No idea how widespread this was but in 1969 there were two 431x1F positions in the Transient Alert/Crash Recovery at Phu Cat AB which was a four sqd. F-100 fighter wing. 

Was a very interesting year.  Lost count of the number of F-100s we dragged out of the mud. 

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I was 776 TAS out of CCK from early 1970 until we moved from Ton Sun Nhut to NKP in 1973? whenever it was. I had the VSM on my DD-214 from an extended time at TSN as duty loadmaster. The VA would still not accept that as proof of "boots on the ground". I had to get a DD215 with Vietnam Campaign Medal and Vietnam Cross on it before the VA accepted it as "boots on the ground". I had orders for both of them, they were just never put on the DD-214.  Still took a long time to get it changed.

Best I can remember the crew chiefs assigned to the aircraft went on the TDY inputs with us to TSN and stayed with the bird until it returned to CCK. Somebirds had assistant Crew Chiefs also. 

The VA has no clue what was going on back then. They make decisions based on some guidelines that somebody else without a clue wrote for them. They kept telling me that we could have been flying all airdrop missions out of Thailand and never landed in country. I tried to show them flying time records with hundreds of in country sorties and travel vouchers. They wouldn't look at them. They would only change my status when I got the DD-215.

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Jim, I remember you from CCK. My local VA in Fayetteville, AR actually acknowledge my Vietnam service after review of my packet that I sent to the USAF at Randolph. I had all my Travel Vouchers, photographs and APRs stating how many days TDY to TSN. This is the problem that we have. Some VA offices can actually think, read and make a decision. Others go out of their way to be difficult. I even got my Agent Orange disability approved at 20% without my letter from Randolph using the same packet that I used locally to get on the Agent Orange registry and to get my letter from the USAF acknowledging time in country. One VA agent that I talked to said their official position was that it was up to our Branches of service to correct our records and not theirs. In the mean time I am trying to get Congressman Womack to help us get a streamlined way to get this corrected by the USAF. Right now I am trying to help one of the Crew Chiefs that gave us good birds to fly everyday at TSN. He has very little documentation of his TDYs to TSN. I don't know him but I bet he helped us launch many days at TSN. I flew 5 combat missions and a few other missions on his bird based on my flight records. Here is a picture of me having some Combat Essential Crown Royal at TSN. I was an upper middle class Redneck drinking Crown way back in 71... 

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I have my complete flying time records and they list the tail numbers of all the birds we flew. I vaguely remember some of the crew chiefs and maintenance people at TSN, but I can't even remember all the crews I flew with. 217 combat missions just all blend together like some weird dream from a different life. I could look up the tail number and what day we used that bird, but the flying time records do not list the crew chief and that probably wouldn't help him any.

vn1971-engstart.jpg

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I understand about the memory failure. I remember Major Cherry as I gave him a 12% MAC on a heavy plane. Thank goodness we had 10,000 feet of runway. Routine load of three pallets of 175 shells. 30,000 lbs 18" to far forward is a big deal. Yoke in his lap and full nose up trim and we finally got off the ground. Had to land hot. He didn't chew my ass but  explained to me that no load was routine and I needed to slip every load in the future. It was my second shuttle in country. I remember Charlie Brault, my Engineer. He was one of the toughest people I was ever around. Nerves of steel. My longest A/C was George Elwood. He was awesome. If we loaded rolling stock he would be right there with us putting chains on the load. Our Co-Pilot was John Grillo. He is in several of the Documentary C-130 Films. We were the mission hackers and flew the flag at the end of our missions. John and I got along since he was an Alabama Boy and I was from Mississippi. That is all I can muster up from my memory bank. I have my flight records too. I have taken my Flight logs and my travel vouchers and pieced together 4 years of history on my Calendar on my MAC.     

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 11/8/2016 at 3:43 PM, 36TASMO said:

The As were at Cam Rahn Bay til approx April 1969 and then they were transferred down to Tan Son Nhut,  I was a maint officer with the 374 FMS and was TDY to both locations.  The 374 TAW also had the A model Blind Bats based at Ubon AB< Thailand

I was in the 374th from Jul. 67 to Jan. 69 as a Maintenance Officer with the 35 TAS and the FMS My first mane is Barry do we know each other?

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Barry--- I arrived at Naha around mid-Dec 1968 and was assigned as OIC of the Fab Branch.  Ed Randall was the Maint Supervisor I reported to but he soon went PCS and the Superintendent I think was CMSgt Sears. Lt Col George Zukowski was the Sqdn Commander. It's possible we crossed paths but if I had been at the O Club for those happy hour drinks before meeting you, then I do have some gaps in  my memory.  From Naha I went to Langley and the 36TAS as one of its maint officers. I only spent a year at Naha because they started the phasedown and I had the eraliest DEROS becuase I was unaccompanied.

Bob Darden

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  • 6 months later...

My name is Larry Ubaldo(Ret MSgt). I was stationed at Anderson AFB, Guam in 1970. I was part of the 79th ARRS as a crew chief on a HC-130H. When the air rescue squadron moved from Thuy Hoa AB to Cam Ranh Bay AB, I guess they didn't have a crew chief to cover one of their aircraft. So I got the call and I met the aircraft at CRB. I stayed with acft until the raid on November 21. After I launched the acft I was told to pack my bags to go back to Guam.

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  • 2 months later...

As many of you on here, I've been trying with no luck for a few years to get proof I was "boots on ground" in VN.  (I can't tell you how many times the VA has sent me a DD214!)  I was a Crew Chief on a C-130 in the 315th in Tan Son Nhut.  Recently I was diagnosed with prostate cancer, which has refueled my quest to obtain records proving my time in VN.  By chance is there anyone on here that was with the 315th in 1965-67?  I've attached a couple of photos which is the only thing I have as far as proof that I was there.  

 

Ernie M.

Ernie VietNam pic.jpeg

Ernie VietNam pic2.jpeg

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  • 1 month later...
On 11/16/2016 at 5:16 AM, Sonny said:

I may be wrong but I thought there were some MX troops that were PCS to Nam.

To the best of my knowledge there were no C-130 maintenance personnel PCS in Viet Nam from 1965 - 1966, I transferred out in Jan 1967.  As far as I know C-130 aircraft rotated into and out of Viet Nam with their maintenance personnel.  

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1 minute ago, MrSam said:

To the best of my knowledge there were no C-130 maintenance personnel PCS in Viet Nam from 1965 - 1966, I transferred out in Jan 1967.  As far as I know C-130 aircraft rotated into and out of Viet Nam with their maintenance personnel.  

There may have been maintenance personnel PCS for the fighters, helicopters, bird dogs, etc but not C-130.

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  • 2 years later...

Did you ever get anywhere with this? I was TDY to Tan Sa Nuet for ten days for an engine change on a C-130 from Clark AB 463rd FMS IN 1969 and have no proof I was also TDY to CRB for 60 days to assist in the mailroom again from the 463rd FMS at Clark. Also in 69 or 70. It would have been between May 1969 and September 1970. My final review was denied as a result of Haas vs Peak Blue Water Navy Law Suit. Now they signed a bill into law that says BWN does not have to prove BOG go figure. 

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  • 1 month later...

Was a c130B crew chief out of Clark, Philippines.  Rotated into TSN with aircraft to fly off hours between periodical inspections done at Clark.  Was also temporarily assigned to TSN for either a 60 or 90 day period to assist with ground maintenance operations. DD214 did show award  for in country duty ribbon and have numerous letters from maintenance officers sent to parents for my aircraft flying 100% of missions on rotations that would serve as proof of boots on ground.

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  • 8 months later...

I also have no vietnam service on my dd214.   Kind of pisses me off.  First time was with the 20th SOS Project Lucky Tiger Huey UH1F, Green Hornets as they were later known to Nakhon Phanom  NKP Thailand and NhaTrang to get fitted with mini-guns. Was part of the Top Secret Project Lucky Tiger mission in  Jan 1967.  Then was sent to Okinawa 374th FMS at Naha later in 1967. Did (3) 60 or 90 day TDY's to CMB in 1967,1968 and discharged Jan 1969.  I have at least 15-16 months receiving combat pay, 3 month TDY resulted in 4 months combat pay, 20 + months in SEA while in the Air Force. I got an early out because of time served in VietNam.   Tried to correct my DD214 and they said yes I had a lot of TDY's in SEA but records  didn't say where I was sent. Yes, I worked 13/7 in Naha and 12/7 in VietNam, I remember in the almost 2 fking years I was given One yes 1 day off. I earned over $1800.00 of combat pay,  so that should be proof enough, but conveniently I and no one else can get their pay records. 

Thanks for my our service rings a little hollow to me.

Dennis Jet Engine Spec E4

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On 12/17/2016 at 10:17 PM, f4enut said:

I was in the 374th from Jul. 67 to Jan. 69 as a Maintenance Officer with the 35 TAS and the FMS My first mane is Barry do we know each other?

At NAHA with the 374th from Jul 67 to Jan 69 as well. Jet Engine Mech. C130A. Never looked back, sucked for my spec. field. 

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On 11/14/2020 at 2:00 PM, DBone said:

At NAHA with the 374th from Jul 67 to Jan 69 as well. Jet Engine Mech. C130A. Never looked back, sucked for my spec. field. 

Dennis, I was at Naha with the 374th FMS 69 / 70, 43250, worked C130A's across the runway, easy area, engine conditioning. TDY’s to Vietnam always had orders cut showing who was coming and who was going. (See example) If you remember someone you went with maybe you can look them up and ask if they have a copy of the orders. With the copy of orders… VA accepted boots on the ground and my DD-214 was updated to show Vietnam Service medal.

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