A Troop, 3rd Squadron, 4th Cavalry 25th ID - Vietnam

Timeline: DA Sanctuary Counteroffensive, 
1 May 1970 - 30 Jun 1970

Last Updated on: Friday, August 09, 2013 12:22:24 AM

     We are building timelines for the Troop's service in Vietnam. If you have award citations, SITREP's, AAR's or other documents, they can provide dates that can add to the timelines.  David Olsen, A18 Oct 68 to Oct 69, is our volunteer coordinator for the DA Sanctuary 1970 timeline. 
     Note 1: Entries that include an exact time or grid coordinates have been extracted from offical documents.  If no time is provided it is a recollection from a unit member.

Note 2: Email David Olsen or the website to provide additions or corrections for this timeline.

May 1
Summary: A Trp OPCON to 2nd Bde. No journal entries. Cambodia invasion starts.
May 2
Summary: A Trp OPCON to 2nd Bde. No journal entries.
May 3
Summary: A Trp OPCON to 2nd Bde. No journal entries.
May 4
Summary: A Trp OPCON to 2nd Bde. No journal entries.
May 5
Summary: A Trp OPCON to 2nd Bde. No journal entries.
May 4
Summary: A Trp at Cu Chi for maintenance standdown.
May 7
Summary: A Trp , BTrp, C Trp and HHT conducted road march to vic Thien Nghen prepare for future operations.
1013     A Troop departing Cu Chi
           A Troop at FSB Devons
           A Troop clear Go Dau Ha
           A Troop in traffic Jam at T.N.
           A Troop clearing culvert. Informed that on May 8 will send A Trp to secure FSB
May 8
1113     A Troop departing on operation conducted mounted recon
1113     A Trp at XT075845
1235     A Trp at XT073847.  A Trp 25 track hit mine at 071847 damage: Blown off 4 sets of road wheels
           1 person with possible ear damage.
May 9
Summary: 3rd Squadron, 4th Cavalry, swept north from the border into Cambodia and secured the roadways in the area.  (See Tropic Lightning News 1 Jun 1970). A Troop enters Cambodia and secures airstrip perimeter near Phum Krek. The 3/4 Cav began to uncover caches that appeared to be part of a large complex.
0106     A Troop clearance to fire mortars on North 84 grid line
0620     A Troop 30 starting road clearing. A Trp 20 scouts crossing border conducted mounted recon
1947     A Trp closed NDP at this location
May 10
0707     A Troop road sweep North on 22 started. A Troop at CP 7
1037     A Trp at CP 9 moving to west
1213     A Trp vic 930959 found bunker complex
1350     ¾ Cav new CP will be at 099066
1515     A Trp 929959 reports finding 4 bunkers 4x3x4 w/ 2’ OHC 11 hootches 150 lbs rice
           are to be training area dummy Chi Com Hgs bayonet dummy rifle silouette targets
1630     A Trp & B Trp moving out of search area
1654     A Trp 20 across AVLB 10 & 30 moving across
1705     A Trp cleared AVLB
May 11
0635     A Troop moving
0704     A  & C Trps in PSN along screen line. Conducted mounted recon XT498417,503414
0736     A Trp found 1000 lbs rice at 132035
0806     A Trp 900 meter short of PL Pear
0830     A Trp PL Pear spotted 5 indiv taking evasive action fled NE w/ packs
0840     A Trp found bag w personal items & rice
0850     A Trp at 139048 found 1 bunker 3x5x2 2 ‘ OHC 3 quick AK loads 3 AT rifle grenades
0958     A Trp XU139048 4 bicycles 2500 lbs rice
1025     A Trp left across stream. A Trp 10 155072 1 indiv on bicycle NVA belt canteen 2 NVA ponchos.
           A Trp  spotted 2 indiv w/ weapons running toward village 1 indiv dropped weapon
           found 1 AK 47 that indv dropped proceeding toward village
1420     A Trp advised to move trains to FSB Dorn
1950     A  & C Trps fire restriction No 50 cal unless engaged small arms all directions except
           towards populated areas
2200     A Trp & resupply convoy approaching this location
2245     A Trp trains closed this location
2330     A Trp loc 10 & 30 XU145086  20 Xu140081
May 12
Summary: A Trp  conducted mounted recon 153093, 146093, 138100, Found base camp area, 2 81 mm mortars, 1 106 RR, 1 CKC rifle, 600 lbs rice, oxcart in stream, 2 wheeled trailer that had been camaflouged but was empty. (journal missing two pages).
????      A Trp 20 reports mech ambush successful at 132087 2 bodies in green uniforms HCM 
           sandals, 2 CKC belts, 2 diaries, 1 photo album 2 lbs documents NVA helmet 2 bowls
           of rice cloths mess kits  indicatons of 3 indv wounded
1735     A Troop request slick to pick up IPW Team & POWs Read out that POWs were ARVNs
           will  make further inquiry with units they claim they were from
1745     A Trp read out on cache 1 mimeograph machine electric powered 3 gasoline powered
           generators 87 M-1 Rifles 3 30 cal pistols, 3 typewriters,1 3.5” rocket launcher,
           20 106 recoiless rifles  on carriages, 38 case 30 cal ammo (250 rounds per case)
           42 81 MM mortar rounds 4 cases 35 rocket launcher ammo (3 rnd per case)
           4 cases of Soviet mines ( 4 mines per case) 60 mm mortar w/ bipo,
           1 81 mm mortar w/ bipod, 3 table mounted seweing machines
           “Casco Pion” reports  C Co within 6000 meters of A Trp NL XU128115
           A Trp trip flares went off on berm opened up w/ 50 cal & small arms, neg results
           Message from Warden 41 to Locust 94 have NLO report to Warden’s location ASAP In the morning
           A Trp reports unable to set mech ambushes
May 13
Summary: A Trp  conducted mounted recon 144088, 150086, 138100, 143097, 149090, 144096, 135096, 131089. Found (see item #30 missing page) Also 1 oxcart w varity of men & womens clothing, 1 US 45 cl pistol, 1 AK quick load cooking utensils (journal missing two pages).
1120     A Trp 10 144088, 20 150086 30 138100
1730     A Trp at XU131089 received 1 bust of AK fire
1850     A Trp at 1800 found base camp w/ 7 hootches, frames only, 2 were mess halls,
           1 classroom w/ 10 benches, and speaker podiums, 1 blackboard, 2 bins of rice
           which A Trp scattered, 1 flour grinder, 1 typewriter, 1 lb documents,1 roll recording
           tape, 1 NVA flag
May 14
0948     A Trp 131089 (Ref #69 missing page)found 29 recording tapes
1028     A Trp reports Kit Carson scouts refuse to go out w/ troops, say they want to go back to Cu Chi
1040     A Trp departed NOP
1353     A Trp 30 160103, 27 bags of rice 200 lbs per bag at 1200 hrs
1504     A Trp has 5 PCs carrying rice to this location
1537     Gen Mildrew to A Trp cache site
1555     Gen Mildrew on ground at A Trp cache site
1637     Gen Mildrew departing A Trp location.  A Trp  (1) send Hvy Plat up through,P/U Linquist & all aval
           transportation to evacuate A Trp cache site (2)  clear Hwy 7 from XU030016 to XU174030  
           (3) outpost Hwy 7 with at least one position location vic XU122027 to secure
May 15
Summary: Find 3 NVA base Camps, Officers School, Weapons Caches, Rice, haul rice. Lt Winter acting commander for operation. Alfa Troop, 3rd Squadron, 4th Cavalry, uncovered a large arms cache after moving through a heavily wooded area six miles inside Cambodia.  A man had seen them and was fleeing.  In pursuit, the Cavmen dismounted their tracks to cross the river between their position and the enemy’s. On the other side a well concealed hootch was spotted.  Inside were several boxes of weapons and ammunition.   The Hootch was a combined enemy base camp and training center.  In the area were several other hootches with blackboards and benches lined up classroom style. Total items found were one mimeograph machine, two brand new generators, 86 M-1 rifles, three .30 caliber machine guns and three typewriters Two unused 75 mm recoilless rifles with carriages, 38 cases of .30 caliber ammunition, 100 81 mm rounds, four cases of 3.5 inch rockets, four cases of Soviet mines, one 60mm mortar tube with bipod and one .30 caliber water-cooled machine gun. Also in the cache were 11 bicycles, 11 cases of AK ammunition, 100 60mm rounds, nine rocket-propelled grenade rounds and 40 hand grenades. (See Tropic Lightning News 1 Jun 1970)
0738     A Trp reports rice passed by on the 1st  day moved
0746     A Trp 30 XU140026 returning from road sweep, hit mine is receiving small arms fire from  both side
           of road A Trp 10 reacting
0754     A Trp 30 30 track had last 3 road wheels blown off receiving AK fire from north. A Trp 10 sweeping
0834     A Trp  125036 reports rice cache 00-70 bags found 1 st day but passed has been
           moved oxcart trail leading away AZ 320 found trail will follow send location to Bde A 13 104___ VTR
           hit mine while retrieving PC that hit mine earlier blew off track & 2 road wheels & arms neg
1110     Maint departing FSB Dorn enroute recover A Trp  VTR
1120     A Trp followed trail 129106 to village believes Cambodians picked up for own use
1317     A Trp will transport 1 Plt D/4?9 to B Trp location 136105
1352     Convoy ambushed at 076840 request 3 urgent 2 priority dustoff 3 urgent are litter
1415     Individuals WIA at 076840 belong to 65th Eng
1423     Total number of dustoff of price element (65th Eng) is 4 urgent 4 priority
1510     Dustoff from A Troop complete. 1 Plt D/4?9 will stay at A Trp  NL site Tonight
May 16 - May 22 (we do not have the journals for these dates)
May 22
- Find 2 NVA Base Camps, Booby trap factory, Large communications camp, with radios, 4 Motorcycles, 4 generators, captured 2 P.O.W  (See Tropic Lightning News 13 Jul, 70)
- From the division 50 day summary: The 3d Squadron, 4th Cavalry spent 50 consecutive days in the fields of Cambodia without return for rest. Deprived the enemy of staggering quantities of weapons, ammunitions and supplies.  Deprived him of the use of sanctuaries inside Cambodia, temporarily halting and challenging the communists to undertake the costly and time-consuming job of rebuilding.  Captured volumes of important documents that have provided a clearer, and more detailed, picture of the enemy system of command, control and support from inside Cambodia.
- A partial list of communist arms, ammunition and equipment which Tropic Lightning troops captured or destroyed inside Cambodia includes more than 700 individual weapons . . . just under 150 crew-served weapons . . . and over 45 tons of ammunition.  Captured or destroyed more than 1,500 tons of rice . . . more than 5,600 pounds of communications equipment . . . 56 vehicles . . . and almost 1,600 pounds of documents.  More than 13,000 pounds of medical supplies will never again be used to sustain the enemy.
- One of our most important tasks during the coming months will be to help the Government of the Republic of South Vietnam to strengthen its forces and solidify its people’s defenses.  The work that was done in Cambodia will contribute immeasurably to this purpose.  Any operations the enemy begins in South Vietnam will face critical shortages.
- The cross-border operations of Tropic Lightning and its sister divisions have dealt the enemy a severe blow and have brought the war much closer to a successful conclusion and contributed greatly to the success of the campaign in the III Corps Tactical Zone.
May 23 - May 27 (we do not have the journals for these dates)
May 28
0805      A Trp setting up cordon of 1st village.  B Trp cordoning 2nd village.
1140      A Trp village XT022012 3 cases penicillin, 12 55 gal drums gas, 1 land rover 1 55 chevy
1200      A Trp enroute village XT975084
1330      A Trp  at XT972089
1400      A Trp requests 1 US priority ambulatory dustoff at ST 975070 man w/102 temp
1418      Dustoff 157 ETA 20-26 Mins
1450      Dustoff 157 complete enroute 25th Med Tay Ninh.
May 31
- Move into Fishhook.
- Sgt Mendosa walks into helicopter tail rotor.

Jun 1
- KIA Melvin Wink. (Veiw photo) WIA Johnny Easterling.
Jun 10 (From Burt Lehman recollection submitted 29 Jul 10)
- Plt ambush/firefight in Cambodia
- 18:30 hrs, Three tracks from 3rd platoon "A" troop left NDP to set up a mechanical ambush inside a nearby rubber plantation.  A35, a Sheridan tank was in the lead, followed by A38 APC, and A30 APC.  They entered the rubbers and about 1 click in turned right on a road at a bombed out "villa".  After going another click through rubbers, the road crossed another road and 3rd platoon stopped before crossing.  EXTREME bad feeling!! Hair on back of neck standing up, temperature dropped, and you could smell them (NVA). To left was open area where rubber trees had been removed. To front after intersection was bamboo thicket to road edge.  All on 38 immediately locked and loaded M-16s, M-60's, and 50 CAL. 30 (LT Winter) instructed Platoon Sgt. on 35 to continue on.  Ambush came from bamboo on the left as soon as 30 entered cross road. 35 blew up first and then 30 took an RPG. 38 returned fire with M 16's and M-60's and quickly backed off to the right side of the road that was open. 38 TC (Lehman) started returning fire with 50 CAL and RPG just missed 38 left front. 30 then blew big time from second explosion and caught fire. 35 was burning also. 38 dismount (Odom) opened rear door of 38 and helped 4 wounded from 35 inside 38. Don't remember platoon sgt name but loaders name was Peter Perri. After firing 1200 - 1300 rounds of 50 CAL., as many 7.62, and a dozen or so hand frags, there was no incoming fire.  After 30 exploded the second time we reached the NDP on the radio to tell them our position and to please send help quickly. 10 radio'd back that they were reacting.  After no more incoming we headed back toward NDP on a parallel road and met up with 10 elements.  They loaded our four wounded and we (38 and 1st platoon) headed to ambush site.  We ran parallel to road through rubber trees to avoid mines.  We reached ambush site with no further contact.  Found 30 and 35 burning still and Davis 30 T C, Yamashita 38 Delta, Lt Winter, Maloney Medic, and Andler dismount all dead.  Found one dead NVA and blood trails.  One 1st platoon tank hit a mine on the way back to the NDP.  It was after dark by then.  Gotta stop 38 Tango Charlie "out"
- KIA’s (5): James Davis (view photo), John Maloney (view photo), Edwin winter (view photo), Shojiro Yamashita (view photo), & Marion Andler (view photo).
Jun 26
- KIA Jerry Carver (view photo).

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