Why Choppers and Tanks are Alike

South Vietnam, Republic Of; I was a radioman with the 7th Regiment, 1St Marine Division from September 1967 through October-1968 at Hill 55. One day we were walking back from a daily patrol and when we reached the main highway, we hitched a ride on an Army tank that was passing through. Never got inside it, but looked down into it. A few days later I was heading out on an operation in a CH-46 helicopter and got shot down. Luckily I survived with just a couple of sprained ribs-it made me realize that tanks and helicopters had the same problem-they’re both fucking bullet magnets! To all of us and those just like us-Damn Few!!
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21 comments


  • John Wear

    In reply to Mark Moorhead.
    Mark Morehead – Did you know that there is an organization just for USMC Vietnam Tankers? My email address is johnwear@yahoo,com If you will respond with an email giving me your mailing address, I will have a sample of our 48-page quarterly magazine and a membership application mailed to you. You can check us out at http://www.usmcvta.org


  • John Wear

    In reply to Jesse Griffin VSM CAR CIB.
    The Griff – Where the heck have you been brother???


  • John Wear

    The 500 members of the USMC Vietnam Tankers Association would be honored if any of you “treadheads” wanted to join the brotherhood. We are conducting a biennial reunion in St Louis, MO, on Sept 21 – 25, 2017. We’d love to see you there. Send me an email………………..johnwear@yahoo.com


  • Ron

    Helo’s do attract fire but I joined the Marines with an Aviation Guarantee… I didn’t like to walk in the boy scouts and dang sure didn’t want to walk if I was in a hostile environment which anywhere in Vietnam applies… Class of 72…. CH 46 makes a bigger target than a Huey or Cobra…. but not as big as the 53’s did..


  • Robert T. (A co. 3rd Shore Party Bn. 1966-1967)

    In reply to DANIEL ZAWIEJSKI (SKI) 7TH. MOTOR BATTLION (B CO.) CHU LAI VIETNAM 1966-1967.
    I was out on Operation Chinook (Camp Evans) north of Hue in late Dec 1966/early 1967. It was during the monsoon season and I saw several tanks “belly-out” in the rain soaked ground and had to be pulled out by tank retrievers. The ground was so soaked that wide tracked Otters, normally used on the Arctic snow and Ice, were brought in for resupply purposes. As for helicopters, I had occasion to fly in the 34’s and 46’s and most had green duck tape covering the bullet holes. On one occasion, I was flying on a CH-34 between Camp Evans and Dong Ha when the pilot made a very quick dropping maneuver. When we got to Dong Ha I asked the door gunner what had happened and he said the pilot caught sight of tracer round and made the maneuver to avoid getting hit. On another occasion I was on a flight on a C-130 from Dong Ha to Phu Ba. On approach, we noticed a crew member going from one side of the plane to the other looking outside. When we landed the plane stopped at one end of the runway and we were told to hurry and get off. Upon looking back, we saw that, evidently, while on approach, a “sniper” had put a round through a wing tank. So, it seemed that about EVERYTING that moved was a potential target. And, let’s not leave out the Amtrak and Ontose crews.


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