The Crows Nest

Most Marines who served in Vietnam have seen or,heard of “The Marble Mountain” located near China Beach and the Marine Air Facility at Da-Nang.Some might not know that there was more than one Marble Mountain.There was the double peaked “Chinstrap”,”Big No Name”, “Little No Name” and “The Crows Nest”. After spending most of my TOD as an 0331 with “Echo” 2/1 and after recovering from an infected “Centipede” bite, I was transferred to the “H&S Co” 2/1 located near the mountains.I had about 5 weeks or so left in country and after an unpleasant encounter with the Company Gunny was sent to the OP at “The Crows Nest”. At least I was ,kinda, out of the fight.After about a 400 foot climb to the top, with the assist of a rope, I was greeted by the NCOIC. I can not remember his name but he was a Staff Sgt. I was assigned to assist the FO for the 81 Mortars based at the base of the Mountain.I still remember the view from top. To the south was the “Dodge City”, Dien-Ban area,My ole stomping grounds, farther south and,on a clear day LZ Baldy could be seen.To the west toward “Four Corners” was “Charley Ridge” To the north was the Marine Air Facility, the Da-Nang Airbase and farther up the coast was the “Hai-Van Mountain”. To the east were the “Barrier Islands” and the “South China Sea” Were not just Marines there.We had 2 Army guys that operated the big search light and 1 Corpsman. As far as the duty goes it was great but it was really hot during the day and cold and windy at night. Oh, forgot about the dogs! don’t know how long they were there or how they got there but there were at least 5 that I remember. Our main duty was to watch for rocket launches at night and try to pinpoint the location and relay the info to arty or mortar units. We also had a Starlight Scope and a huge pair of Navy Ship Binoculars to help watch for infiltrators. During the day if you did not have watch we could go down to HQ and clean up and go to the PX.The only rule was to be back by 1700.About a week before my rotation date I went back to H&S and began checking out then “Homeward Bound” on the big “Freedom Bird” . P.S. Forgot to mention the 106mm we also had. Also had a 40×40 LZ VN July 68–Aug 69
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