1968 Overview

During the year the battalion participate in the Tet Counteroffensive battles in the Spring and fought major battles in the Fall. January saw the battalion in the Katum AO and at Fire Support Base Burt. During TET 68 the battalion moved at the beginning of February from the Dau Tieng Area of Operations to fight near Cu Chi and at Hoc Mon. After Tet the battalion took over security of Tay Ninh Base Camp, and finally found a new new home north of Trang Bang at Fire Support Base Pershing.

Two events shook the American psyche early in ’68; the taking of the US Navy’s Pueblo and the Tet Offensive — then we lost Walter Cronkite and LBJ bailed on us.




The second phase of Operation Yellowstone had begun on 9 December 1967 and it ended on 25 January 1968.

FSB BURT vic XT4980
FSB KATUM vic XT3391



4 JAN 68
“Continues OPCON to 1st Bde, 25th Inf Div, extracting rice and conducting recon in force operations.”
[SOURCE: HQ 2/12th Inf AAR (Yellowstone) 15 March 1968]

Since December 29, 1967, the 2/112th rice cache and laager (XT279934).

Fire Support Base Burt at (XT499806) under major attack by the 271st and 272nd VC Regiments (4 battalions committed, 2 battalions in reserve. The attack began at 11:30 pm on the 1st and raged until 6 am on the until, resulting in 401 VC killed, 23 US KIAs and 153 US WIAs. Known as the Battle of FSB Burt (or the Battle of Suoi Cut), it was some 16 klicks Southeast of the 12th at Katum.

Defending U.S. forces:
2/22 (M) Inf Co.’s A, B, C
3/22 Inf Co.’s A, B, C
Southeast Artillery Battery B (155 mm self-propelled)
2/27 Arty Batteries A, C
5/2 Arty (one section of M-42 self-propelled “Dusters”)
71st Arty Battery D (M55)
29th Arty (one section Battery I)

On the 2nd the 4/9th Inf (Manchu) replaced the 3/22nd Inf who flew to Katum, and then on to Dau Tieng on the 5th,  only to return to Burt on the 7th, where they remained until the 23rd when they finally left this place of hell.

[NOTE: Oliver Stone, director of the movie PLATOON, was a member of Bravo Company, Third Battalion, Twenty second Infantry (B/3/22) and the movie’s climax may have been based on the battle at FSB Burt, although I’m sure Stone had many other adventures that could have been the basis. – Sarge]
[SOURCE: 3rd Brigade, 25th Division AAR 19 March 1968]

2/12th INF continues OPCON as 1st Bde. RECON platoon continues as 3rd Bde as RRF.

5 JAN 68
“Bn (-) relocated to FSB KATUM (XT333898). Replaced 3/22 at FSB and assumed FSB security requirements. Bravo Co airmobile from Dau Tieng to Katum, last element departed Dau Tieng 1235H.”
[SOURCE: HQ 2/12th Inf AAR (Yellowstone) 15 March 1968]

Co. B had been at Dau Tieng as 3rd Bde RRF.

Four miles northwest of Katum, the Battalion leaves the site of the rice cache discovered on the 29th of December at (XT279934) and returns to Katum Base Camp at (XT334898) to replace the 3/22 Inf and assume security for the base.

Bravo Company airmobile from Dau Tieng to join the battalion at Katum, the last element arriving shortly after noon.
[Source: 2/12 Inf AAR 15 MAR 1968]

3/22 Inf leaves FSB Burt for Dau Tieng.

ELSEWHERE IN VIETNAM: To the east of Katum, the 4/9th Inf “Manchu” working out of FSB Burt fight the Hour Glass Battle north of Katum on an LZ. Three helicopters were shot down and many others shot to pieces.

6 JAN 68
2/12th Inf providing security for Katum, resting and refitting after recent operations.

7 JAN 67
2/12th remains at FSB Katum as security.

3/22 Inf returns to FSB Burt.

8 JAN 68
Co. A KIA:
Pfc. Larry Gene Dearing (20)*

Elements of the 2/12th providing security for Rome Plows one and a half klicks southeast of Katum made contact with an estimated squad of enemy at (XT340884) resulting in two NVA killed.

Six hours latter at 4 pm sniper fire killed one U.S. soldier, wounded two others and resulted in one U.S. non-battle injury. Enemy losses unknown.

*[Source: Virtual Wall Organization.]

9 JAN 68
D Co., 1st platoon, KIA’s:
Spc4 Randolph T. Butler (20) of St. Petersburg, FL and
Spc4 Tyler W. Cobb, Jr. (19) of La Puete, CA perished in Tay Ninh Province.

Co. D received continuous sniper fire on the 9th just southeast of the previous days contact killing Specialist’s Butler and Cobb and wounding another soldier at (XT340884). Enemy casualties unknown.

10 JAN 68
2/12th airmobile west-southwest of Katum to an LZ at (XT274864). Alpha Company had one non-battle injury.

11JAN 68
Co. A departs Katum sweeping east to (XT359901), then north to (XT359920), west to (XT346900) and then southwest back to Katum.

Bravo Company provided security for Rome plows working the perimeter.

At 6:15 pm Katum received 10 rounds of 82 mm and 15 rounds of 60 mm mortar fire. Negative casualties.

12 JAN 68
Co. C discovered 8 graves with the bodies of 8 males dressed in light green uniforms at (XT345887). This was in the area of the January 8th and 9th contacts.
[Source; Yellowstone report]

Bn continues as OPCON 1st Bde.
RECON platoon as 3rd Bde RRF. At 3:50 pm CRIP vic XT503447 received small arms and automatic fire. Returned fire with organic weapons with negative results. US was shot in the thigh (friendly) at 3:55 pm XT500477

13 JAN 68
2/12th INF OPCON as 1st Brigade.
Local Recon in force around Katum.

14 JAN 68
Co.’s A, B and C conducted a combat air assault into an LZ nine klicks northwest of Katum at (XT279972). Gunships covering the assault received fire north of the LZ at (XT279978) and returned fire. An air strike was called in. Co. C investigated and received fire from an estimated 3 VC in the area.
Co. B located a minefield and 10 VC bodies in shallow graves.
The three companies swept south one klick from the original landing zone to a pick-up zone (PZ) at (XT282958) and returned to Katum.

2/12th continues as OPCON 1st Bde. RECON platoon RRF for 3rd Bde.

15 JAN 68
2/12th BN OPCON to 1st Brigade

Co.’s A, B & D rif six klicks southeast down Hwy 246 to Bo Tuc and return to Katum. The battalion located and destroyed three anti-tank mines clearing the road.
[ibid Yellowstone report]

2/12th INF OPCON 1st Bde.
Recon platoon remains 3rd Bde RRF.
[Source: ibid 3rd Bde AAR]

16 JAN 68
2/12th BN 3rd Brigade

2/12th (-) Battalion moved by CH-47 (Chinook) from Katum to FSB Burt to relieve the 4/9th Manchu and Bn returned to 3rd Brigade control from the 1st BDE.

3/22 Inf remained at Burt until the 23rd and then the 3/22nd flew to Dau Tieng.

17 JAN 68
Battalion in 3rd Brigade

2/12th conducted platoon size patrolling and improving FSB Burt positions. At 9:15 am Co. C found 1 dead (BC) XT506798. Also destroyed 3 mortar positions, 20 bunkers, 50 82mm fuses.
[SOURCE: 3rd Bde, 25th Div, After Action Report 19 March 1968]

18 JAN 68
BN in 3rd Bde

Alpha Company found three freshly dug 4’x3’x5′ foxholes (two with overhead cover) northeast of FSB Burt at (XT515830). At 1:15 pm a Dust off was called for a soldier with leg cramps. At 4:15 pm a stay behind force discovered a grave with a male dressed in black pajamas.
[SOURCE: Yellowstone OR-LL 25th Div HQ]

2/12th search and destroy operations vic XT525810.
Co. A at 9:45 am destroy 3 foxholes with over-cover vic XT515820. At 1:20 one US suffered leg cramps vic XT517820 (dusted off). At 5:20 pm Co. A found 1 VC KIA (BC) in grave vic XT500810.
[SOURCE: 3rd Bde, 25th Div AAR 19 March 1968]

19 JAN 68
BN in 3rd Brigade
Battalion conducted Search and Destroy operations to vic XT5181 & XT5182.

Co. D found one VC body 500 meters east-northeast of Burt at (XT504808) near 8 am. They continued patrolling and returned to the base at 5 pm. The battalion was conducting local patrols around FSB Burt. [SOURCE: Yellowstone OR-LL HQ 25th Div]

20 JAN 68
2/12th INF in 3rd Bde

Elements of the 2/12th swept to the southeast of FSB Burt.

Co. A, 1 klick SE of Burt, at (XT507796) [1] found stakes tied to trees. Stakes were probably use as trail markers. Alpha also discovered and destroyed four 3’x4’x5′ bunkers with overhead cover – estimated three days old [1]. At 0850 hours vic (XT509799) [2] found 8 huts, 17 bunkers. Alpha destroyed the bunkers and burned the huts. At 9:45 am at (XT511791) [3] found a week old six foot bunker with overhead cover. At 1020 hours (XT517787) [4] found 7 freshly dug unused graves, 4 foxholes 3’x4’x4′ (two incomplete), 6 freshly dug bunkers without overhead cover approx. 1 week old. At 12:25 pm (XT511792) located 1 foxhole and a hut with an 8′ long tunnel. At 2:10 pm (XT503797) [6] found probable staging area with 30 (+/-) foxholes having overhead cover, one radio battery case, rucksack, bandages and approximately 100 pounds of rice. Located 6 graves with six males. Found and extracted one bicycle.

Co. D found a 3′ wide bridge tied with vines at (XT515784) [7]. Also found one AK-47 with magazine at (XT504800) [8].
All elements closed FSB Burt by 4 pm.
[SOURCE: HQ 25th DIV Yellowstone OR-LL]

2-12 INF: Continued S&D vic XT5178.
[SOURCE: 3rd Bde, 25th Div AAR 19 March 1968]

21 JAN 68

Co. A (point company) and Co. B (trail) sweep two klicks east-southeast out of FSB Burt to (XT524800), then (around 10 pm) swing north. 100 meters north of the turn, Co. B discovers 3 bunkers with overhead cover and 3 foxholes at 10:45 am. The bunkers were very old and already partially destroyed.
Co.’s A and B continue north nearly one klick from the turn at XT524800 to a check point at (XT524809) and turned west-southwest towards Burt. At 3:10 pm Alpha discovered 17 bunkers with overhead cover each 3’x4’x4′, some bloody rags and two VC entrenching tools.
Both companies closed the wire at Burt by 4:30.
[SOURCE: Yellowstone II OR-LL]

Co. C, 2/12th OPCON to 3/22 Inf. At 8:55 am Co. C, working with Co. D 3/22, find seven bunkers with overhead cover and 100 meters of trenches at (XT489809) one klick west-northwest of FSB Burt. Moving 500 meters due west they found two bunkers with overhead cover an hour and a half latter at (XT486809).
[SOURCE:3/22nd INF, 26th DIV Yellowstone II AAR]

RECON remains 3rd BDE CRIP. [? Dau Tieng?]
Co. B 9:25 am vic XT524801destroyed 3 bunkers.
Co. A 3:17 pm vic XT515804 found 17 bunkers and 2 entrenching tools.
[SOURCE: 3rd Brigade, 25th Division AAR 19 March 1968]

22 JAN 68
Co.’s B and D swept east out of FSB Burt. At 0815 hours Co. B found 15 two week old foxholes with no overhead cover at (XT505805). In the same area Delta Company found 35 one man foxholes with no overhead cover about two weeks old. Two-hundred meters SE of the foxholes they found 4 VC bodies about three weeks old. Moving east, Delta found a small base camp at (XT512805). The bunkers were 3’x4’x4′ and had overhead cover. Delta destroyed these. Moving southeast from the base camp Delta found a three week old VC body, 2 RPG rounds with charges, and 1 Chicom grenade. By 4 pm both companies had closed the wire at Burt.

Co. C continue OPCON 3-22 INF.
RECON platoon continues as BDE CRIP.
Co. D 8:14 am vic XT509805 destroyed 15 foxholes and at 8:45 am found 4 bunkers. At 1:10 pm vic XT502??? Co. D found 1 VC KIA (BC) and 2 RPG rounds.
[SOURCE: 3rd Bde, 25th Div AAR 19 March 1968]

23 JAN 68
On the 23rd and 24th the battalion conducted cloverleaf operations two clicks north of FSB Burt on Hill 95 (XT504833).

3/22 Inf leaves FSB Burt for Dau Tieng.

BACK IN THE WORLD (sort of):
A U.S. Navy intelligence gathering ship, the USS Pueblo, is captured by the (Communist) North Koreans on the 23rd. The fate of the crew of 83 absorbs the attention of the Navy and State Departments until the crew is released in December 1968.

[As far as I know, the Commies still have the damned ship. Or is that “doomed” ship!? Korean was still a “hot” place 15 plus years after the Korean War Truce – soldiers were still getting killed. I think infantrymen stationed on the Korean DMZ could get a CIB. – Sarge]

25 JAN 68
2/12th conducted local sweeps around FSB Burt. At 3 pm Bravo Company found 2 RPG-2 rounds with boosters 300 meters southeast of the firebase at (XT503805).

26 JAN 68
B Co. KIA:
Pfc. James C. Curtin (21) of Chicago, IL perished in Tay Ninh Province and
1Lt Reginald A. Stancil (24), Arty FO, of Bristol (Fairless Hills), PA perished in Tay Ninh Province.

FSB Burt received 25 82mm rounds at 8 am. This resulted in 4 US KIA and 29 US WIA. Pfc. Curtin and artillery FO 1Lt Stancil were sharing a foxhole when it was hit by a mortar.

Extraction operations of the battalion from Burt began at 8:45 and the Second of the Twelfth closed Camp Rainier by noon.

“…. 26 January 1968, 2/12th to airlift to Dau Tieng to reinforce and/or counterattack the following areas and employ two (2) companies in the Michelin on Reconnaissance in Force Operations, also provide security for vehicle convoy between Dau Tieng and Tay Ninh:….” [Extract follows. – b.h.]
District Headquarters (Vietnamese)
369th RF Company
Ben Do Out-post
CRIP and Nguyon Van Than Out-post
Cau Cat Out-post
Cau Duc Out-post
Cau Binh Out-post
Bon Cui

[SOURCE: HQ 2/12 Yellowstone AAR 15 March 1968]

[Others killed on the 26th – most likely, but not necessarily during the mortar attack – Pfc. Robert Risley Fryer (MOS 11C10) who had been “in country” just 19 days, 1Lt. Sgt. Maxie Lane Price (MOS 13E20 Cannon Fire Direction Control), and Pfc. Edward Joseph Craig (MOS 13A10 Field Artillery).]

27 – 31 JAN 68
Battalion (-), at Dau Tieng, conducts Reconnaissance in Force missions in and around the Michelin Rubber Plantation. On the 31st OPERATION YELLOWSTONE ENDS. Results: 5 2/12th KIA, 47 WIA.

TET 68


31 JAN 68



In response to the VC/NVA threat to Saigon the 2/12th was relocated from Camp Rainier (Dau Tieng) to Cu Chi for deployment to various hot spots. The fact that the battalion had been withdrawn from the Cambodian border area of War Zone C to Dau Tieng in the first place was the direct result of General Weyand’s – Commanding General, IIFF (Second Field Force) – recognition of the threat to Saigon by having the majority of American forces beating the bushes.

Because the main supply line (Hwy 1) was unsafe from Saigon to Cu Chi, LOGISTICS were handled out of a makeshift supply depot called “CONEX CITY” at Tan Son Nhut (Airbase) while the battalion was at Hoc Mon.

Cu Chi - Tan Hoa AO (Tet 68)
Cu Chi – Tan Hoa AO (Tet 68)


Ap Phouc Thoi 2 (Co. A 7Feb68)….. (vic XT698114)
Tan Hoa (Co. D 8ñ14Feb68)….. (vic XT6914).

Cu Chi was some 12 miles northwest of Saigon.




1 FEB to 10 MAR 1968

Operation Saratoga was a 2nd Brigade, 25th Division operation that had begun on 7 December 1967 while the 2/12th Infantry was in the 3rd Brigade and participating in Operation Yellowstone. When the battalion came under the operational control (OPCON) of the 2nd Brigade on the 1st they became a unit in Saratoga.

**********************************************************************************************************************1 FEB 68

The 3rd Brigade’s 2/12th Infantry became OPCON to the 2nd Brigade and flew 20 miles south-southeast to a landing zone (XT631180) west of the Filhoi Rubber Plantation, and a couple of klicks north-northwest of Cu Chi base camp. This move was precipitated by the movement to the Saigon area of both battalions of the 27th Infantry in their reaction to the opening shots of Tet 68.

upon landing, the 2/12th busied itself with building a night laager and operating base (XT628180) in the rice paddies some 1 1/2 miles northwest of the wire at Cu Chi base camp and settled in for the night.

[SOURCE: Operation Saratoga After Action Report 2d Brigade 25th Infantry Division]

RECON continues as 3rd Brigade CRIP. [?Dau Tieng?]
[SOURCE: 3rd Bde, 25th Div After Action Report (AAR) 19 March 1968]

ELSEWHERE: Boh Cu Chi Base Camp and Cu Chi village are under attack. 3/22 Infantry counter-attacks and assumes security for the main supply route (MSR) Highway 1 from Trang Bang to the Hoc Mon Bridge (along with element of the mechanized 4/23 Infantry who were working the Ho Bo’s).

2 FEB 68

Night location: XT628180, 2km NW of Cu Chi Base Camp.

At 6 a.m. the battalions new night laager received 6 rounds of enemy 82mm mortar fire resulting in negative casualties.

The battalion conducted Reconnaissance in Force Operations and airmobile combat assaults. In mid-afternoon (1525 hrs) Company A sustained 1 WIA from a booby trap 2 miles (+/-) west of the night laager at XT588173.

[SOURCE: ibid)


3 FEB 68

Night Laager remains NW of Cu Chi Base Camp.

At 3:22 a.m. just east of the night laager a ambush patrol (or listening post) sustained 5 US WIA from fragmentation wounds. XT631180.

Companies A and B flew five miles east to an LZ southwest of Phu Hoa. XT705184. Moving north-northeast off the landing zone Company A made contact at 11:35 a.m. with an unknown size enemy force but sustained no casualties. XT708193. Still moving northeast, A and B Companies made contact on the outskirts of Phu Hoa village at 1 p.m. sustaining 12 US wounded by gunshot. XT714197. The enemy lost 7 killed (body count). Three hours latter a supporting gunship was downed in the Filhoi Rubber Plantation by small arms fire. XT700196.

ELSEWHERE: TAN HOA (ARVN) COMPOUND under heavy attack. Element of 3/22 Inf, while attempting to relieve Tan Hoa, meets enemy along Highway TL-8A (8 Alpha). vic XT6714.



4 FEB 68
Night Laager (NL) remains NW of Cu Chi base.

Companies B and C conducted airmobile combat assaults to LZ 4 1/2miles north of Cu Chi camp near the banks of the Saigon River. XT673231. Companies A and C provided security for the night laager.

[SOURCE: Ibid]


5ñ7 February 1968

With the Battalion still in their night laager (vic XT628180) northwest of Cu Chi Base Camp the effort shifted from north of Cu Chi to the area between the base camp on Highway 8-A (a.k.a. “Eight Alpha”) and the collection of villages at AP CHO on Highway 1, an area code named AO CLEAN-UP.

For three days the 2/12th slugged it out half-way between Eight Alpha and the MSR. For all intents and purposes the fifth of February was THE BEGINNING OF THE BATTLE OF TAN HOA since the fighting was only a mile due south of the village of Tan Hoa, although other histories call the fighting a part of the battles around AP CHO.

5 FEB 68
NL remains NW of Cu Chi base camp.

Co. C KIAs:
Pfc. Kenneth W. Coates (20) of West Branch, MI;
Pfc. M. L. Curry (18) of Holly Springs, MS;
Pfc Larry W. Norgaard (20) of Iroquois, SD; and
Pfc. Wesley G. Thurston (26) of Rochester, NY
perished in Binh Duong Province.

Co C air assaulted into Ap Phouc Thoi (XT677124) south of Cu Chi. After moving a mile-and-a-half due east Charlie Company made contact at Ap Phouc Hung (XT694125), a village with an ARVN compound to the north and a road system that ran south to the villages in the vicinity of Ap Cho on Highway 1. At 1:25 p.m. Charlie Company had 1 WIA, by 2 p.m. the company had suffered 8 wounded and 4 dead. Two hours latter 2 VC fired on Company C resulting in no casualties. A sweep of the firefight area revealed 34 enemy killed – either by Co. C or supporting artillery, gunships or air strikes.


6 FEB 68
Co. A, 4th platoon, KIA:
Pfc. Richard Benjamin (22) of Altome, AL died of wounds (DOW) received in Binh Duong Province.

Co. B KIA:
Spc4 Bradford L. Trout (20) of New Castle, IN died of wounds (DOW) received in Binh Duong Province.

Former Company B member John Grigsby remembers that Trout and Richard Sorenson “were best buddies – like brothers.” Sorenson would die on the 11th at Tan Hoa.

The events of February 5th were repeated on the 6th by Alpha and Bravo Companies, the landing zone was (once again) west of Ap Phouc Hung and the companies moved east towards the area of yesterdays contact with Alpha on the left who struck first at XT696124 at 10 a.m.. An hour and-a-half latter Bravo (a few 100 yards to the south) made contact and sustained one wounded in the vicinity of XT695122.

At 1:15 p.m. the companies were fully engaged in the vicinity of XT695122, with sporadic contact continuing until nearly half past five. Enemy forces were engaged by the companies organic weapons with the support of artillery, gunships and air strikes resulting in 15 VC KIA (BC) ñ seven of them credited to the 2/12th Infantrymen who lost eight wounded and two killed.

[SOURCE: HQ 25th Div ]

7 FEB 68
Night Laager (morning of 7th): Northwest of Cu Chi Base Camp.

Co.’s A, C and D flew south from the NL above Cu Chi to a landing zone one kilometer south-southeast of yesterdays contact site. Co. A moved a short distance south of the landing zone and began to construct a new battalion night laager in the vicinity of Ap Phu Loi at XT698113. Meanwhile, Companies C and D searched the last two days contact site and found three Viet Cong bodies.

Up north, Company B was busy tearing down the old night laager northwest of Cu Chi and moving to a billet on the base camp.

[Source: 2dBDE 25th DIV OP SARATOGA AAR]

Shortly before midnight, elements of the 2/12th Inf engaged at (XT698114) – just east of Ap Phuoc Thoi (2) – some two klicks north of the highway as it passes through Tan Phu Trung/Ap Cho (or) some four klicks north of the Hoc Mon bridge. The 3/4 CAV sent a flare ship to support the 2/12th, whose call sign “Flame 3” at 38.10FM.

[Source: 3/4 CAV — 3/4 CAV Daily Journal.]


8-14 February 1968

vic XT6914 two miles east of Cu Chi Bas along Highway 8

8 FEB 68

Co. D KIA:
Pfc. Ned Lee (23) of Flagstaff, AZ perished in the village of Tan Hoa, Binh Duong Province.

Co. D WIAs:
Lt. Ronald Hendricks, 1st platoon, and acting commanding officer of Co. D at the time.
Lt. Michael Christenson, 2nd platoon.
Lt. Jeffery Mayfield, 3rd platoon
Joe Bastidas

Co. D was engaged in a running battle for six straight days — February 8 to 14 — approx. 6 klicks east of the main gate of Cu Chi Base Camp at Tan Hoa (vic XT695145) & Dong Sao (vic XT700105).

Lt. Ron Hendricks had this to say about the opening phase of the battle outside Cu Chi at Tan Hoa; “I had been the Acting CO until approximately noon. Ed Domaleski was the XO. He had just returned from R&R. I turned the company over to him at that time. We were supposed to be done for the day and just kick back to get ready for ambushes that night. We received a mission to secure some engineers going to the gravel pit. We were picked up dropped near the east gate of Cu Chi. We went into Tan Hoa riding the trucks. The [platoon] order was 3-2-1-4. We stopped and dismounted just inside the village due to suspicious activity. 3d platoon opened fire on a fleeing VC and all hell broke loose. They were in front of us, behind us, and in between us.”


The following article from Tropic Lightning News:

3RD BDE — After battling an estimated battalion of
Viet Cong for six consecutive days, elements of the
3rd Bde, 25th Inf Div drive the enemy from the village
of Tan Hoa, two kms east of Cu Chi.

The 2nd Bn, 12th Inf “White Warriors,” under the
command of LTC Dean Tice, continued to fight the
enemy daily aided by air strikes, artillery and gun-
ships. Weakened by the continued pounding by the
U.S. Forces, the Viet Cong were forced to leave their
maze of tunnels, spider holes and bunkers within the

A total of 122 enemy were killed and five Viet Cong
suspects detained during the bitter fighting. Eleven
American soldiers died in the six day period.

The six day battle began shortly after helicopters
dropped elements of Delta company on a landing zone
near the village. The infantrymen immediately came
under heavy fire from automatic weapons and rocket

For the following five hours the White Warriors stead-
ily pushed into the widespread village which was
honeycombed with spider-holes and complex tunnel systems.

1Lt Ronald Hendricks, first platoon leader of Delta
company commented about the complex system of tunnels; “Charlie would fire at you from one spider-hole concealed in a hedge row, crawl through a tunnel to a new position and open up again. It made it rough to pinpoint his location, but once we did, we put it to him.”

LTC Richard Simpson acting battalion Commander in the absence of Tice, said the men did a magnificent job. The battalion went through a new phase of fighting the Viet Cong. They went against a larger force, well dug in, and by the hard effort of every PFC and SGT, they took the Village. Those are the men that did the job.

According to intelligence officers, the enemy was well armed with fully automatic weapons of every caliber the VC are known to employ. They had an abundant supply of ammunition.

[Source: Tropic Lightning News, March 11,
1968 courtesy of Ken “Doc” Blakely].


“Doc” Blakely writes that 1Lt. Ronald Hendricks (Co. D, 1st platoon leader and acting CO at Tan Hoa) was wounded the first day of the battle; and that 1Lt. Edward Domaleski, Delta XO, acting CO, was wounded at Tan Hoa. Blaely also says that CAPTAIN EDWIN BETHEA (Delta CO from mid Feb. to late Apr. 1968) was also wounded at TAN HOA, but the date is unknown.]

9 FEB 68

Co. A, 4th platoon, KIAs:
Pfc. Walter R. Waschick (18) of Merrill, WI perished in Binh Duong Province.
Spc4 Rymond J. Palacio (20) of Seaside, CA perished in Hua Nghia Province.

Co. A, Arty FO RTO, KIA:
Spc4 John R. Barfield (19) of Bude, Mississippi perished in Binh Duong Province.

Co. A WIAs:
Dan Hollister (1st platoon) was hit by the splash of an RPG. Dan’s major wound was in his right shoulder.

Co. A night laager (NL), 3 1/2 southeast of Cu Chi Base, (NL vic XT698113) moved to establish a new NL (vic 691144) at Tan Hoa.

“2-12 INF: Conducted airmobile combat assaults to LZ vic XT676144 NS xt690150. One company established and secured a new night location at XT691144. Co. C with elements of the 554th Engineer Battalion conducted road clearing and security.

10 FEB 68
Tan Hoa (Cu Chi area)

Co. D’s commanding officer, Lt. Ed Domaleski, WIA & evacuated.
[Editors NOTE: Lieutenant Domaleski was the commanding officer of the RECON company in this period and sent to command Delta ñ note the Delta officer casualties of the 8th.

11 FEB 68
Co. A KIA:
Spc4 Given W. Bradley (23) of Paducah, KY;
Pfc. Peter A. Hill (20) of Eureka, CA; and
Medic Pfc. Frank L. Stec (21) of Chicago, IL
perished in Hua Nghia Province.

Co. B KIA:
Pfc. Richard L. Sorensen (20) of Eureka, UT perished in Binh Duong Province.

12 FEB 68
Co. A KIA:
Pfc. Max Russel Bever (23) of Waurika, OK perished in Hua Nghia Province.

Co. C KIA:
Pfc. Edmund A. O’Conner (20) of Lindenhurst, NY perished in Hua Nghia Province.

13 FEB 68
Co. B KIA:
Sgt. Larry W. Barnard (20) of Knoxville, TN perished in Binh Duong Province.

14 FEB 68

HARRIS CITATION (August 9, 1968):
The Distinguished Service Cross is presented to James A. Harris, Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Company A, 2d Battalion, 12th Infantry, 3d Brigade, 25th Infantry Division. Staff Sergeant Harris distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions, on 14 February 1968 as platoon sergeant of an infantry unit during its assault on an enemy infested village. As the lead platoon, led by Sergeant Harris entered the village, its advance was halted by intense enemy fire from a well-fortified trench and bunker system. Undaunted by the murderous fire, Sergeant Harris led a small patrol in an attempt flank and destroy the enemy positions. As he advanced to within ten meters of an enemy machine gun position, he was detected and the enemy began placing heavy machine gun fire on his position, painfully wounding him. Sergeant Harris was forced to withdraw. He quickly reorganized his troops and led another assault on the enemy machine gun position. The withering enemy fire again halted the advance. Sergeant Harris was wounded a second time but refused to be evacuated. Disregarding the pain and loss of blood from his wounds, he obtained two hand grenades and crawled towards the enemy positions alone, leaving his men behind to provide covering fire. As he stood up and threw the grenades, he was wounded a third time. His accurate throw destroyed the enemy position and allowed his platoon to advance. Still refusing medical evacuation, Sergeant Harris continued the mission until it was completed. Staff Sergeant Harris’ extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.
[SOURCE: http://www.homeofheroes.com]

16 FEB 68
[BACKGROUND NOTE: 1/5th (Co.’s C, B & HHC) established a Patrol Base at XT781033 two klicks E of downtown Hoc Mon. Co. A OPCON to 3rd BDE 25th Infantry Division]


17 FEB 68
[BACKGROUND NOTE: 1/5th base at XT803046 five klicks E of downtown Hoc Mon.]

23 FEB 68
Co. C KIA:
Spc4 James S. Strickland, Jr. (20) of Jacksonville, FL perished in Gia Dinh Province [Hoc Mon area].

28 FEB 68
(27 Feb U.S. Date)

CBS News anchorman Walter Cronkite ends an editorial statement with these words;

“To say that we are closer to victory today is to believe, in the face of the evidence, the optimists who have been wrong in the past. To suggest we are on the edge of defeat is to yield to unreasonable pessimism. To say we are mired in stalemate seems the only realistic, yet unsatisfactory, conclusion. On the off chance that military and political analysts are right, in the next few months we must test the enemy’s intentions, in case this is indeed his last big gasp before negotiations. But it is increasingly clear to this reporter that the only rational way out then will be to negotiate, not as victors, but as an honorable people who lived up to their pledge to defend democracy, and did the best they could.”

[Source: http://facultysmu.edu/dsimon/Change%20–Cronkite.html ]




BATTALION and events

7 FEB Bn
NL morning XT628180 Co. B
NL morning XT698113 Co.A, C. D in 6th contact area
2pm XT694123 Bn loc. 3 VC (BC)

8 FEB Bn
XT698113 NL morning Co’s A, C, D
11:00 pm Bn engage aprox. 150 VC with arty and LFT Unknowns results.

9 FEB Bn
Bn Co. A and C airmobile from XT698113 to Tan Hoa area LZs.
XT691144 one company establish NL .
8:35 pm Co. C fighting XT690145 Tan Hoa and sweeps battle area and finds 8 VC KIA and 20 poss..

Co. A and C fighting;
12:45 pm vic XT6914
2:06 pm supporting gunships received heavy fire.
2:19 pm two US WIA returned with A/W, S/A and air strikes.3:00 pm Co. A at XT692147 received WIAs and KIAs.
Losses for battle: 9(+/-) and 2 US KIA.

8:29 pm night location, 2 miles south of Tan Hoa, hit by small arms. Returned organic weapons and artillery with unknown results.

10 FEB Bn
XT693144 Co. A, C, and D engaged by enemy. Returned with organic weapons.
7:30 am XT698146 Co. C and D received A/W, S/W and RPG fire. Contact developed to sporadic sniper wire.
1:50 pm Bn [Co’s C and D] withdrew 1 1/2 miles east to vic XT7114.
2:10 pm contact broken.
2:40 Co. B at XT702144 heavy contact by small arms, automatic weapons, .50 caliber machine gun and rocket propelled grenade fire. Contact continued as of 6pm.
3:00 pm Bn calls in Air Force strikes – 750 lb bombs and 20mm cannon fire.
Battalion sustained 11 US WUA and 1 MIA. VC losses were 11 VC KIA and 3 killed by air.

11 FEB Battalion
XT750150 elements of Bn (-) and ARVN 2 miles east of Tan Hoa an 3/4 miles north of Highway 8A.

12 FEB Bn
Co’s B, C and D working with 65th Engineer Battalion tunnel clearing and bunker clearing in Tan Hoa. XT6814, XT6914, XT7014.
Element of Battalion (-) with ARVN blocking east of Tan Hoa.
11:30 pm XT691144 Bn night laager M79 friendly fire 1 US WIA.

13 FEB Bn
vic XT695140 and XT695147 firefights.
Battalion sustained 3 WIA’s and 2 US KIA’s.

14 FEB Battalion
6:50 am fpir companies north and south of highway 8A to vic XT695145 sweep with one Company roving to the rear providing reaction force. Negative contact. Found 46 VC KIA (BC) and 3 VC KIA (poss) in yesterdays contact area. During the days sweep, US used 4.2″ mortar, 106 recoilless rifle, artillery, small arms and automatic weapons in the sweep of Tan Hoa.
Composite of soldiers formed a platoon to secured the laager for the day.

15 FEB Battalion
7:30 am All companies sweep Tan Hoa and battle area vic ST695145 with 4 dozers and Co. A, 65th Engineer Battalion. Negative contact. Located 36 VC KIA (BC).

16 FEB Battalion
2/12th securing engineer clearing bunkers and tunnels.

17 FEB Bn
Battalion relieved by L Troop, 11th Armor Cavalry Regiment (11th ACR) and released for 2nd Brigade, 25th Infantry Division.



7 FEB Co. A
XT698113 morning

XT698113 morning NL
8:30 am to LZ XT677139 and sweep back to NL

9 FEB Co. A
XT690150 LZ
Poss. est. new Bn NL
12:45 joins battle

10 FEB Co. A
7:30 XT693144 received enemy fire
1:50 pm withdrew 1 1/2 miles east
2:00 pm air strikes

11 FEB Co. A
1:00 pm XT701145 engaged enemy fire. Returned organic weapons, artillery, light fre team gunships(LFT), and 3 TAC air strikes with bombs and napalm. Resulting in 3 US WIA and 1 US KIA.
4:30 pm Contact ends with additional 2 US WIA’s from 3 1/2 firefight. VC losses 6 VC KIA (BC) and 4 VC KIA (poss).

12 FEB Co. A
Company providing security for Battalion laager.

13 FEB Co. A
Company working with 65th Engineer Battalion destroying bunkers and tunnels. vic XT6914

14 FEB Co. A
4 Battalion sweep of Tan Hoa

15 FEB Co. A
Company A secures 4 dozers from Cu Chi to Tan Hoa.
All Battalion companies sweeping Tan Hoa. Negative contact.

16 FEB Co. A



7 FEB Co. B
XT628180 (old) NLsecurity and closing
moves to Cu Chi

8 FEB Co. B
Co. B searching tunnels in area of their NL
XT698112 11:45 am captured 5 VC POW

9 FEB Co. B

10 FEB Co. B
Co. B security of their location 2 miles south of Tan Hoa.
1:40 pm XT702144 Co. B in heavy contact east of Tan Hoa. Continues to six pm. Received small arms, automatic fire, .50 caliber machine gun, and RPG

11 FEB Co. B
Co. B clearing operations of highway 8A. (with D Co.)

12 FEB Co. B
Company working with engineers in Tan Hoa.

13 FEB Co. B
Company working with 65th Engineer Battalion destroying bunkers and tunnels. vic XT6914

14 FEB Co. B
Four companies sweep Tan Hoa.

15 FEB Co. B
All Battalion companies sweeping Tan Hoa. Negative contact.

16 FEB Co. B
10:25 am XT683124 Co. B sustained 3 US WIA from booby trapped grenade.



7 FEB Co. C
XT696124 sweeping 6th contact

8 FEB Co. C
XT698113 NL morning
Co. C sweeping south of NL
9:40 AP vic XT695120 blows claymore and kills 3 VC (BC).

9 FEB Co. C
XT676144 LZ two miles west of Tan Hoa.
7:45 am Co. C sweeping east of road TL-8A, from Cu Chi Base Camp to Tan Hoa, with 554th Engineers.
8:35 am vic XT690145 Co. C received automatic weapons and .50 caliber fire. Returned organic weapons, artillery and air strikes. Sweep finds 8 VC KIA and 20 (poss).
12:48 pm Alpha joins Co. C fight.

10 FEB Co. C
7:35 am XT698146 enemy fire US 1 WIA in contact
1:10 pm contact broken

12 FEB Co. C
10:00 am XT701145enemy fire returned by small arms, light fire team (LFT) gunships, and artillery.
11:00 am contact broken
11:35 am XT701145 contact again, 3 US WIA. Fire returned by S/A, LFT’s and TAC air strikes. Sporadic sniper for the rest of day.

13 FEB Co. C
Company working with 65th Engineer Battalion in Tan Hoa destroying bunkers and tunnels. vic XT6914

14 FEB Co. C
Four of the Battalion’s companies sweep Tan Hoa.

15 FEB Co. C
All Battalion companies sweeping Tan Hoa. Negative contact.

16 FEB Co. C



7 FEB Co. D
XT696124 sweeping 6th contact
NL at XT698113 .

8 FEB Co. D
XT698113 NL ,morning
8:30 airmobile to LZ 577139 and sweep back to NL by 11:25 am.
?Did Co. D go to Cu Chi and rode trucks toward Tan Hoa?
XT692144 2;10 PM CONTACT 12 US WIA. 22 VC KIA (BC). Co. C working with engineers.

9 FEB Co. D

10 FEB Co. D
7:35 am am XT698146 enemy fie
1:10 pm contact broken

11FEB Co. D.
Co. D conducting clearing operations of highway 8A (with B Co.)

12 FEB Co. D
Company working with engineers in Tan Hoa.

13 FEB Co. D
Company at night laager location, providing security and as the Battalion reaction force.
11:30 am XT695140 engaged by enemy AK47 and carbine fire. Fire returned by organic weapons, TAC air strikes and artillery.
Also at 11;30 XT695147 enemy fire contact continued for rest of day.

14 FEB Co. D
Four companies of Battalion sweep Tan Hoa.

15 FEB Co. D
All Battalion companies sweep Tan Hoa. Negative contact.

16 FEB Co. D


MARCH 1968


After the fighting east and south of Cu Chi in February, the battalion moved south to the Hoc Mon village area four miles northwest of the Tan Son Nhut airbase (Saigon) along highway QL-1 the main supply route to Cu Chi.

The beginning of March found Companies C & D engaged in a fierce battle on the outskirts of Hoc Mon. On March 13 the battalion moved north of Hoc Mon and established a night laager in a cemetery. For the next few days the battalion worked the area west of the Saigon River and north of Rach Tra (stream) that was a tributary of the Saigon River that fed the “Hoc Mon Canal.”

Hoc Mon AO (Tet 68)
Hoc Mon AO (Tet 68)

Hoc Mon…… (vic XT 7403)
Tan Thoi Tung…… (vic XT 7204)
Tan Hiep…… (vic XT 7405)
Cemetery (poss. Co. A & B base)…… (vic XT7500)
4Mar68 Battle (Co. D)…..(vic XT760052)

This map covers area about 5 miles NW of Tan Son Nuit Airbase (Saigon). The dark-diagonal line is Highway 1(QL-1), the MSL (Main Supply Line) running northwest from Saigon through Hoc Mon, Cu Chi, Trang Bang to Go Da Ha, and (on QL-22) to Tay Ninh beyond. The blue lines are canals and streams.



4 MAR 68

Co. A KIA:
Sgt. Isreal L. Ingram (26) of Columbus, Ohio died of wounds received in Gia Dinh Province.

Co. C KIAs:
Spc4 Lorence M. Lundby (26) of Waterloo, IA and
Pfc Edward A. Schultz (21) of San Luis Obispo, CA perished in Gia Dinh Province.

Co. D KIAs:
Spc4 Willie H. Hunter (25) of Fort Lauderdale, FL,
Spc4 Darrell G. Lewis (24) of Greenville, TX and
Pfc Timothy R. Schroeder (20) of Bethlehem, PA perished in Gai Dinh Province.

Co. D Wounded:
Ken “Doc” Blakely
1Lt Michael Byrne
Monte Campbell
Eddie “Doc” Gray
Robin Hurt
Raymond Lucero
Sgt. David Peterson
Terry Wiegold
Dale Wrightson
Jimmy Yamashita
as well as others.

Company D 2/12 Inf while working with C Troop, 3/4 CAV discover a large bunker complex in the vicinity of XT760052. The area was on the north-northeast side of Hoc Mon village.
[SOURCE: Headquarters 3rd Squadron, 4th Cavalry (3/4 CAV), After Action Report (AAR) Saratoga — from http://www.ctrp-3rd-4thcav.com]


[Doc Blakely sent this news article about a two day fight in Tan Thoi Trang.
SARGE’S NOTE: I have not, as of yet, been able to find on my maps the area “Tan Thoi Trang” – working on it. 12 kilometers northwest of Saigon would put this in the area of Hoc Mon and there is an area south of Hoc Mon know as “Tan Thoi TRUNG which is the approx distance discribed in the news article. There is an area just south of Co. D’s March 4th battle site known as “Tan Thoi.” The two locations are several klicks apart. – Sarge]

3RD BDE ñ Sweeping through the village of Tan Thoi
Trang, elements of the 2nd Bn, 12th Inf “White
Warriors”, aided by A Trp, 3rd Sqdn, 4th Cav, drove an
estimated NVA Co. from the village 12 kms northwest
of Saigon.

The 3rd Bde, 25th Div unit commanded by LTC
Dean Tice, continued to maneuver toward the village
for two days while gunships and the big guns of the
cavalry’s tanks pounded away at suspected enemy

During the two days of fighting 20 enemy were killed.

Contact was made shortly after Alpha and Charlie Cos
were heli-lifted to a landing zone near the village. The
infantrymen joined up with A Trp and began to push
into the enemy held village when they came under
heavy automatic weapons fire.

For the next eight hours the White Warriors inched
their way into the village, knocking out the spider holes
and bunkers as they advanced. At dusk, the battalion
dug in around the village and kept constant pressure
on the enemy throughout the night.

The following morning the companies again began to
push into the village under sporadic sniper fire. As the
units moved through, they found numerous bunkers
and trench lines within the village.

In the sweep, the battalion uncovered one AK-50
machine gun, two AK-47 assault rifles, twelve 60mm
mortar rounds, six RPG-7 rounds, one anti-personnel
mine, two complete radio telephone sets, three miles
of commo wire and numerous documents of the North
Vietnamese Army.

From the communication equipment found, the
battalion intelligence officer estimated that the once
held enemy village had been a battalion size
communications center for the NVA forces operating
in the Saigon area.

[SOURCE: Era newspaper article from Ken Blakely.]


Andy Farris, lieutenant, 3rd platoon, Delta company, said: “We had made a late night run with the 3/4 CAV….and logger’d [sic] well past mid-night….”

The morning of March 4th, Co. D approached Hoc Mon with column of twos, with the mechanized calvary behind Co. C..

Farris said; “As our reinforced platoon entered the village PFC Timothy R. Schroeder was on the right flank, maybe in front of the point man, when a sudden burst of machine gun fire open-up from a concealed bunker. Tim was the first man hit.”

Company D assaulted the village six times, and lost almost half of the 28 men they had started in the morning.
[SOURCE: Á 2006 Monograph by “Andy” Farris.]


4 MAR 68 Co. D Battle Site (XT760052)
4 MAR 68 Co. D Battle Site (XT760052)

6 MAR 68
Co. D while working with the 3/4 CAV between Tan Thoi Nhut and Quan Tre – vic XT7500, an area south of Hoc Mon and west of Highway 1 – discovered and destroyed a major bunker complex.
[Source: 3/4 CAV website Journal.]

8 MAR 68
Co. B while working with Troop B, 3/4 Cav discovered a bunker complex in Xuan Thoi Son village (vic XT7302).
[SOURCE: HQ 3/4 Cav Saratoga (ibid)]

9 MAR 68
Co. D and Troop A, 3/4 Cav captured 1 AK-47, documents and a motor bike, and destroyed 12 rocket positions west of Tan Thoi Nhut (on Hwy 1) in the vicinity of XS736989.

10 MAR 68
Co. D KIA:
Cpl. Robert William Eagleson (20) of Eddyville, oregon perished in Gia Dinh Province.

Spc4 Biondo was wounded at the same time and would die on the 19th.

11 MAR 68
In two separate instances south-southwest of Hoc Mon, one at 2:10 pm and one at 3:15, Company B detonated booby trapped grenades wounding one US soldier in the vicinity of Vinh Loc (WS7197).

12 MAR 68
The 2/12th working in the plantation area between the [Hoc Mon] canal and Vinh Loc. The area was some 8 klicks south-southwest of Hoc Mon village.

13 MAR 68
The battalion combat assaulted to an area north-northeast of Hoc Mon village and rif to a cemetery at XT773088 – Go Chua (hill).

14 MAR 68
The battalion was operating two miles NNE of Hoc Mon city along the banks of the Kinh Rach Tra & Song Cau San[rivers].

Southeast of (and near) Ap Chanh (6) Company A found a cache consisting of; 4,500 small arms rounds (captured), and destroyed 528 82m mortar rounds, 20 122mm rockets, 7 122mm rocket warheads, 25 claymores, 700 lbs of demolitions, 277 grenades, 181 RPG-7 rounds, 12 bangalore torpedoes, 800 ft det-cord, and 51 75mm recoiless rocket rounds.

Three to six thousand sheep are found dead in Utah’s – aptly named – Skull Valley, near the US Army’s Dugway Proving Grounds. During open air tests the deadly nerve agent VX had drifted off the base. The Army finally admitted in 1998 that the nerve agent “MAY HAVE” caused the accident, even though a 1970 report had stated as much. [Source: Desert Times}

15 MAR 68
Companies B, C and D. In the late morning Company B destroyed 2 60mm mortar rounds and 3 RPG-7 rounds. Around the same time Company C destroyed 150 small arms rounds. In mid-afternoon Company D found and destroyed one grenade and 50 small arms rounds.

16 MAR 68
The battalion continued their search and this time came under fire..

Early in the morning Company D found and destroyed 36 RPG-2 rounds, 5 RPG-7 rounds, one RPG-2 rocket launcher, 63 grenades, 13 60mm mortar rounds and 572 small arms rounds. The company also captured five pounds of documents.

Shortly after 10 am Companies A and D received small arms and automatic weapons fire just north of Ap Dong (3) (vic XT796085). The area was about 2 1/2 miles NNE of Hoc Mon and about the same distance west of the Saigon River Fire was returned with small arms, automatic weapons, artillery and a helicopter light fire team resulting in 5 VC prisoners and four US wounded.

“Early in the morning of March 16, 1968, [helicopter pilot Hugh Thompson], door-gunner Lawrence Colburn and crew chief Glenn Andreotta came upon US ground troops killing Vietnamese civilians in and around the village of My Lai.

They landed the helicopter in the line of fire between troops and fleeing Vietnamese civilians and pointed their own guns at the US soldiers to prevent more killings.

Colburn and Andreotta provided cover for Thompson as he went forward to confront the leader of the US forces. Thompson later coaxed civilians out of a bunker so they could be evacuated, and then landed his helicopter again to pick up a wounded child they transported to a hospital. Their efforts led to the cease-fire order at My Lai.

In 1998, the Army honored the three men with the prestigious Soldier’s Medal, the highest award for bravery not involving conflict with a enemy. It was a posthumous award for Andreotta, who was killed in battle three weeks after My Lai.” [IOL News]

Thompson died in 2006 at the age of 62. R.I.P..

17 MAR 68
Company C combat assaulted into a landing zone just north of Ap Dong (3) and this would be the area of search for the next few days.

At 11 am the 2/12th’s Command and Control (C&C) ship spotted one VC body near a stream.

At noon Company C destroyed 3 bangalore torpedoes. One-half hour latter, at XT797088 just north of Ap Dong (3), Charlie company found 2 VC bodies and destroyed 50 pounds of rice and 38 pounds of TNT. They also captured one 122 mm rocket, seven rocket motors, and four fuses in the area.

Throughout the afternoon Charlie company moved south and after crossing a dirt road and some 800 meters south of the first cache found the bodies of 8 VC just north of the Rach Tra at 3:15 pm.

18 MAR 68
On this day the battalion searched slightly more to the east of the previous days area. After a morning combat assault, Companies A & B landed in the vicinity of Ap Binh Hoa (2) at XT8008. After a day of searching Company B had found 4 122mm rockets, 12 rocket motors, 2,700 lbs of rice and 3 60 mm mortar rounds. Scattered throughout the area they found the bodies of eight VC in various places.

19 MAR 68
D Co. KIA:
Spc4 Martin Biondo (22) of Kirkwood, MO died of wounds (DOW) received in Gia Dinh Province.

Companies A & D returned to the previous days search area near Ap Binh Hoa (2) making a morning helicopter assault into two different landing zones.

Shortly before 11 am Company A discovered a dud 250 lb bomb near a dirt road and blew it in place (at XT803087).

Nearby, Company D destroyed two grenades at 2:20 pm at XT804086.

20 MAR 68
The 2/12th combat assaulted to XT805075 near Ap Trung Nhi (2) and moved east towards the intersection of the Rach Tra [stream] and Saigon River bare;y a klick away from the landing zone. Shortly before noon Company C found one VC KIA and captured 1 .45 caliber pistol.

One platoon of Company D moved to and secured the Hoc Mon bridge.

21 MAR 68
On this date the 2/12th conducted a patrol and at 9:40 am (vic XT779082) Company A found 2 VC KIA near the intersection of two small streams just north of Ap Chanh (6).


1 March to 8 April 1968

2/12th Inf participation; 22 March – 30 March [OPCON to 1st Brigade at Dau Tieng.

Wilderness mission was to conduct offensive operations in vicinity of Tay Ninh to Dau Tieng.

22 MAR 68
The 2/12th Infantry became OPCON to the 1st Brigade, 25th Division, and the battalion moved from the vicinity of XT7704 to Dau Tieng via Chinook helicopters.
[SOURCE used for 11 to 22 March 1968: Lessons Learned, 3rd Brigade, 25th Infantry Division 26 April 1968.]

“2-12 Inf: Closed DAU TIENG 1345, became OPCON 1st Bde, that time. Battalion stood down for maintenance.”
[SOURCE: HQ 25th Div, 1st Bde, WILDERNESS ending 8 April 1968]

24 MAR 68
“2-12 Inf: Conducted refresher training vic DAU TIENG Base Camp.”
[SOURCE: HQ 25th Div, 1st Bde, WILDERNESS]

25 MAR 68
“2-12 Inf: Conducted refresher training and local patrolling vic DAU TIENG Base Camp.”
[SOURCE: ibid]

26 MAR 68
A Co. KIA:
Pvt. Larry E. Elmore (24) of Kansas City, MO perished in Binh Duong Province. [Dau Tieng area]

“2-12 Inf: Conducted local patrolling and refresher training vic DAU TIENG. A 2-12 established a night lager vic XT512448.”
{SOURCE: HQ 25th Div, 1st Brigade, Operation WILDERNESS ending 8 April 1968]

Alpha’s night laager was 2 miles SE of Dau Tieng, 1 mile east of Highway LTL-14, and 1/4 mile north of the stream.

27 MAR 68
A Co. KIA:
Sgt. Robert J. Frisk (24) of Woonsocket, RI perished in Binh Duong Province.

“2-12 Inf: B Co conducted RIF from DAU TIENG to XT508446 where it joined A Co which had moved from its night lager [sic] position at XT512448; RIF continued to XT510450 where night lager was established. C Co secured DAU TIENG Base Camp.”
[SOURCE: ibid ]

Bravo moved 2 miles southeast. Alpha moved a few hundred meters west and meeting Bravo, the companies established a night laager 1/2 mile east of the highway, just north of the stream.

28 MAR 68
“2-12 Inf: One platoon C Co air lifted from DAU TIENG to secure downed helicopter, XT?42335, returned to DAU TIENG after helicopter secured. A & B companies returned to DAU TIENG from night lager [sic], and stood down for maintenance. D Co conducted refresher training vic DAU TIENG Base Camp.”
[SOURCE: ibid]

29 MAR 68
“2-12 Inf: Conducted refresher training vic DAU TIENG Base Camp D Co assumed role as Ready Reaction Force for TAY NINH Base Camp. Battalion (-) helilifted back to TAY NINH.”
[SOURCE: ibid]

30 MAR 68
“2-12 Inf: Conducted airmobile movement to FSB HAMILTON, XT400245 from DAU TIENG, closed 1229 conducted local sweep in vic FSB, and secured FSB during hours of darkness.”
[SOURCE: HQ 25th Div Operation Wilderness, 1st Bde]

“…. seven miles northwest of Saigon, soldiers from the 2/12 Inf located 24 warheads and 12 mortars for 122mm rockets. As the mission continued, the infantrymen found the bodies of 11 VC killed in previous encounters. They also captured 2700 pounds of rice and three 60m mortar rounds.
[SOURCE: Army Reporter March 1968 issue]

31 MAR 68
“2-12 Inf: OPCON 3rd Brigade.”
[SOURCE: Operation WILDERNESS ending 8 April 1968, 1st Brigade, 25th Division]

2/12th Inf and Troop A, 3/4 Cav OPCON to 199th Light Infantry Brigade [199th LIB ñ 3/7th Inf and 4/12th Inf.], who were in turn under direct control of HQ 25th Division. The 199th remained OPCON through April 9th when they were released.
[SOURCE: 25th QRT REP 30APR68]

In a surprise announcement on national TV President Johnson announces he will not run again.


April 1968

4 APR 68
B Co. KIAs:
Sgt. Lawrence E. “Ozzie” Osborne (20) of Peekskill, NY; and
Spc4 David A. Rosenberger (21) of Orange, CA perished in Tay Ninh Province.

Co. B WIA:
Lt. O’Brian (gut shot)

C Co. KIA:

SSG. Tommy D. Knapp (21) of Des Moines, IA. died of wounds (DOW) received in Tay Nihn Province.

Pfc. David J. Schultz (21) of Kent, WA perished in Tay Ninh Province.

BACK IN THE WORLD: On the 4th of April 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated.

BACK IN THE WORLD” Martin Luther King, Jr. killed in Memphis, Tenn. crusading for the cities garbage workers strike.

5 APR 68
B Co. KIAs:
Spc4 Rafael Martinez-Santiago (21) of Ponce, PR; and
Spc4 Robert R. Thompson (19) of Hanford, CA perished in Tay Ninh Province.

7 APR 68
“On 7 Apr the 2/12th Inf conducted a reconnaissance in force (RIF) from XT1829 to XT175293. At 1105 hrs in the vic of XT178295, Co. C recieved SA, AW and RPG fire. Fire was returned with org wpns, LFT & Arty. 3 US WIA evac at 1305 hrs.”
[Source: ORLL HQ 25th Div period ending 30Apr68 AGAM-P (M) (18 Jl68) FOR OT RD 682244 31 July1968]

The area of contact (XT1729) was some 14 miles south of Tay Ninh Base Camp and in the swampland just south of the Long Khanh forest, and within 800 yards of the Cambodian border. North of “the Angels Wing.”

10 APR 68
BACK IN THE WORLD: Congress enacts the Riot Act of 1968 18USC. .
13 APR 68
D Co. KIA:
Spc4 Patrick H. Cook (22) of Marietta, GA perished in Tay Ninh Province.

17 APR 68
Co. D KIAs:
Spc4 Larry L. Chapman (20) of Henryville, IN;
Sgt. William W. Mouton (20) of Groves, TX;
Pfc. Louis S. Mucha (25) of Stickney, IL;
Pfc. Michael L. Pheiffer (20) of Oneida, IL; and
Spc4 Edward J. Vicks, Jr. (22) of Birnghamton,NY perished in Binh Duong Province.

Co. D WIAs:
Sgt. Bell
Lt. Andrew “Andy” Farris
Sgt. Perry
James Hekker

On the 17th Delta company fights a battle that will forevermore be remembered as “the Horseshoe Ambush.”

“Doc” Blakely wins Silver Star.

22 APR 68
C Co. KIA:
Spc4 Johnny S. Taitague (20) a Malayan from Talofofo, GU died of wounds (DOW) received in Tay Ninh Province.

28 APR 68
D Co. KIA:
Pfc. Richard S. Banks (20) of Galesburg, MI died of wounds (DOW) received in Binh Duong Province.



MAY 1968

2/12th INF in Dau Tieng area of operation.

3 MAY 68
D Co. KIA’s:
Pfc. Warren F. Nickel, Jr. (25) of Watsonville, CA perished in Binh Duong Province; and
Pfc. Fred P. Stafford (20) of Beaumont, TX perished in Tay Ninh Province.

13 MAY 68
An attack on Nui Ba Dien kicks off ‘the Battle of Tay Ninh.’

17 MAY 68
C Co. KIA:
Pfc. Gerald T. LeBlanc (21) of Port Allen, LA perished in Hua Nghia Province.

JUNE 1968

In June, 1968 General Creighton Abrams takes command of MACV from GEN Westmoreland.


Operation TOAN THANG,
Phase II Begins

1 June 1968 to 16 February 1969
[See 16Feb69 for results.]

Mission: 2d Brigade conducts offensive operations in TAOI commencing 1 June 1968 to:

a. Frustrate enemy plans, locate and destroy VC/NVA forces, base camps and support areas.

b. Defend Phu Cuong, Ba Bep and Trang Bang Bridges.

c. Clear and secure MSR’s.

d. Execute Pacification program (after 25 Oct “Colors Up”).

e. Conduct VCI operations.

f. Develop targets for B-52 and persistent CS strikes.

g. Conduct combined offensive operations in conjunction with 25th and 5th ARVN Infantry Divisions throughout TAOI to destroy enemy forces.

h. Interdict movement by VC/NVA forces through the TAOI through various corridors by extensive activities within the corridors.
[Source: Headquarters 2d Brigade, 25th Infantry Division Combat Operations After Action Report {RCS: MACJ3 K-1 Operation TOAN THANG, Phase II 010001 June 1968 ñ 162400 February 1969. Hereafter referred to as: 2d Bde 25 Div AAR Op Toan Thang.]


2 JUN 68
Co. D WIA:
Lt. Scudder, 2nd platoon.

5 JUN 68
Robert “Bobby” Kennedy assassinated.

9 JUN 68
C Co. KIA:
Juan Antu (20) of Uyalde, TX perished in Tay Ninh Province.

18 JUN 68
A Co. KIA’s:
Spc4 Audrey J. Cook (20) of Baltimore, MD; and
Pfc. Andrew J. Pacheco (18) of Tucumcari, NM perished in Hua Nghia Province.


JULY 1968


A, B, & D Co.’s at Hoc Mon.

Co. B’s (Sgt.) Larry Fontana writes, “…we were in a laager, not a FSB. Just 2/12, 2/22, 4/9. …July and August of 1968. Only saw the 2/22 one day on the road somewhere. Lonely out there. Glad Alpha was there for company. MILES away from Hoc Mon Town and Tan Son Nhut. Think we were just a little bleep in the radar during a quiet time in that area.” [FONTANA]

Enemy strength: July 1968: 288,000.

9 JUL 68
D Co. KIA:
Pfc. Edward Lester (21) of Chapmanville, WV perised in Hua Nghia Province.

Co. B flown to Hoc Mon area on 9Apr68 according to Larry Fontana.

14 JUL 68
C Co. KIA:
Pfc. Richard A. McGeath (20) of Murphysboro, IL perished in Gia Dinh Province.

25 JUL 68
A Co. KIA:
Sgt. Carson G. Culleton (27) of Lincoln, IL died of wounds (DOW) received in Binh Duong Province.


28 JUL 68
Meanwhile back at Cu Chi ñ a ‘dog-and-pony show’ was put on for Secretary of the Army Stanley R. Resor. The official Dept. of the Army film ‘shot list’ in the National Achives tells the story:

“Summary: Sec Resor arrives at 25th Inf Div heliport by copter and is greeted by BG William T Gleason. (Camera malfunction). Sec Resor, BG Gleason, BG Carlton Preer Jr and other officers listen to briefing on weapons firing demonstration. Group inspect Russian 122mm rockets and launcher. Party observe simulated [sic] Vietcong fire the Russian rocket. 105mm How fires “firecracker” rounds. LS, M-109, 155mm SP How fires. Sec Resor greets soldiers of the firing squads [sic] and departs. AV from copter as it approaches 14th Bde camp [14th Battalion perhaps!?ñSarge]. Sec Resor inspects 105mm How position. He talks with soldiers. Awards ceremony at 2d Bde. Hq. Mr Resor presents DSC to Capt. Harry Joyver [?Joyner?ñSarge], Silver Star to SP4 Charles D. Boyurn, and a DFC to USAF Maj Douglas B. Brittain. LA, Sec of Army flag. CU, 25th Inf Div drum…..”
[SOURCE: National Archives MOPIC Archives. Control Number: NWDNM(m)-111-LC-53136]




A & B Co.s at Hoc Mon.

4 AUG 68
D Co. DOD:
Spc4 Eugene M. Barnett (19) of Cincinnati, OH perished of illness/disease.

21 AUG 68
Medic KIA:
Spc4 Alfred L. Bailey, Jr. (21) of Los Angeles, CA perished in Gia Dinh Province.






2/12th Inf moves to Fire Support Base Pershing and FSB Stuart Tactical Area Operation, they will stay here until February 1970. At this time the Battalion also became a unit of the 2nd Brigade (25th Division).


In early September, the 2/12th, according to Bravo’s Larry Fontana, “found ourselves in a broken down muddy perimeter in the Second Brigade ñ Fire Base Pershing. [Stuart] ñ at Trang Bang ñ was another mud hole that needed work.”

23 SEP 68
Co’s A, B and D at FSB Pershing XT518260.
Co C Trang Bang Bridge vic XT501195.

Co A:
Co A cdt RIF vic XT518253.

Co B:
Co. B cdt RIF vic XT609250.

Co D:
Co D cdt RIF vic XT514250, XT516240, and XT517233.

Neg contact during reported period.

[SOURCE: Headquarters, 2d Brigade, 25th Division, OR-LL Toan-Thang II (1 Jun to 30 Sep 68), 10 March 69. NOTE: 2/12th Inf became part of 2d Bde at 23 Sep 68.]

24 SEP 68
Bn (-) NL loc vic XT513260. Co
C NL loc Trang Bang

Co A provided NL security and acted as the RRF. At 1215H Co A, vic XT517255, apprehended 1 detainee, who was later released as an innocent civilian.

Co.B cdt RIF fm their NL to vic XT510248, XT507238, XT508233, XT513233, and XT497240.

Co. C cdt RIF fm their NL to vic XT506203, XT508199, an 505207.

Co. D cdt RIF fm their NL to vic XT515255, XT5521253, XT524240, XT522235, and XT538240.
[SOURCE: HQ 2nd Bde Toan-Thang II 10 March 1969]
25 SEP 68
Bn (-) NL Pershing.
Co. C Stuart/Trang Bang Bridge.

Co A provided NL security.

Co B cdt RIF vic XT532257, XT536256, XT537268, and XT536272. At 1430H Co B, vic XT532272, captured 11 VC suspects who were hiding in a tunnel complex, evac to IPW.

Co C cdt RIF vic XT505194, XT515193, and XT514199. At 2036H Co C, vic XT501194, received 1 rd of mortar or RPG fire, neg casualties or rtn of fire.

Co D cdt RIF vic XT523261, XT527264, XT532278, XT539276, and XT 527264.
[SOURCE: HQ 2nd Bdee, OR-LL Toan-Thang II 10 March 1968]

26 SEP 68
Bn (-) NL loc vic XT513260 (FSB Pershing).
Co C NL loc vic XT501194 (FSB Stuart/Trang Bang Bridge).

Co A at 0930H cdt airmobile combat assaults fm their NL to vic XT542305. Cdt RIF fm their LZ to vic XT539298, XT537294, XT526280, XT529260 and XT537265. At 1515H Co A, vic XT529271, apprehended 7 detainees, will evac.

Co B at 1000H cdt airmobile combat assaults fm their NL to LZ vic XT654281. Cdt RIF fm their LZ to vic XT50280, XT533275, XT526280, XT533280 and XT530260.

Co C cdt RIF vic XT497212, XT509210, XT507204, XT503211, and XT500203. At 0911H Co C, vic XT497212, apprehended 3 detainees, will evac.

Co D eng 8 personnel with arty and illumination, with neg results.
[SOURCE; HQ 2nd Bde, 25th Div, OR-LL Toan-Thang II (1 Jun to 30 Sep 1968) 10 March 1969]

27 SEP 68
Bn (-) at Pershing.
Co C at Stuart/Trang Bang.

Co A cdt move to Cu Chi cdt stand down with the emphasis on care, cleaning, inspection and inventory of equipment and personnal administrative matters will be accomplished.

Co B cdt RIF vic XT511263, XT519991, XT500263, XT494277.

Co C cdt RIF vic XT497187, XT488185 and XT486188. At 2015H Co C, vic XT501192, eng 2 VC with mortars, neg results. VC rtn fire with a dud RPG, neg casualties.

Co D cdt RIF vic XT518266, XT521277, XT521984, XT515282. At 2000H Co D, vic XT531257, eng a cloumn of lights with mortars, with neg results. At 2150H Co D, vic XT534260, eng a column of lights, with neg results. At 0745H Co D, vic XT540260, apprehended 1 detainee with shrapnel wounds, evac to IPW.

Recon plat provided NL security.

[SOURCE: HQ 2nd Bde, 25th Div, OR-LL Toan-Thang II, 10 March 1969]

28 SEP 68
Bn (-) NL loc vic XT508258 (FSB Pershing).
Co A remains in Cu Chi Base Camp.
Co C NL loc vic XT501195 (FSB Stuart/Trang Bang Bridge).

Co A cdt stand down with the emphasis on care, cleaning, inspection and inventory of equipment and personal administrative matters will be accomplished.

Co B cdt local security RIF vic XT524243. Effective 281132H [28th at 11:32 a.m.. _bh] Co B 2-12 Inf OPCON 2-14 Inf for combined opns. Effective 281618H Co B2-12 Inf rtn to Bn control. At 1435H Co B, vic XT508248, apprehended 3 detainees, who were evac to IPW.

Co C cdt RIF vic XT498193, XT488175, XT488177, XT495183, XT498187, and back to their NL. At 1030H Co C, vic XT487180, received a short bust of AW fire fm an unknown number of VC, neg casualties or rtn of fire. At 1100H Co C, vic XT496174, received SA fire fm unknown number of VC, resulting in 2 US WIA’s, EVAC. Rtn fire with Arty, VC losses unknown. Contact was broken at 1330H.

Co D provided NL security and acted as the RRF. At 1345H Co D, vic XT508248, apprehended 3 detainees.

[SOURCE: ibid.]

29 SEP 68
B Co. KIA:
Pfc. Merlin E. Miller (18) of Guttenberg, IA perished in Tay Ninh Province.

“2-12 Inf: Bn (-) NL loc vic XT508258. Co A remained In Cu Chi Base Camp. Co C NL loc vic XT501195. Co A cdt move fm Cu Chi Base Camp to the Bn (-) NL, cdt local security RIF vic of their NL. Co B at 0845H cdt airmobile combat assaults fm their NL to LZ vic XT603295. Co D at 0924H cdt airmobile combat assaults fm their NL to LZ vic XT603295. Co C cdt RIF vic XT495196, XT493207, XT494209, XT500207, XT507207, XT508200. At 1010H supporting gunship, vic XT619290, received SA fire fm an unknown number of VC, neg casualties. Rtn fire with AW and CS, VC losses unknown. At 1245H Co C, vic XT502208, apprehended detainee, who was turned over to ARVN control. At 1742H Co B vic XT579301, sustained 1 US (NDB), fm an unidentified flying objective that struck him.”

[SOURCE: HQ 2nd Bde, 25th Div, OR-LL (AAR) Toan-Thang II 10 March 1969]

30 SEP 68
Bn (-) FSB Pershing XT508258.
Co C FSB Stuart/Trang Bang Bridge XT501196.

Co B cdt RIF vic XT523272, XT522272, XT529272, and XT525274.

Co C cdt RIF vic XT520192, XT527195, XT526198, XT520197 and XT513190. At 0003H radar at the Trang Bang Bridge picked up 5 individuals moving North, eng with arty, results unknown. At 0915H Co C, vic XT500184, received sniper fire, neg casualties. Rtn with arty, VC losses unknown. At 1330H Co C, vic XT586025, apprehended 6 detainees, evac to IPW.

Co D cdt RIF vic XT526243, XT537268, XT546253, XT534255, XT540256. At 1200H Co D, vic XT542254, apprehended detainee, who was evac to their NL for further interrogation.

[SOURCE: ibid]




The month of October, the 2/12th fought several running battles from the 7th through the 11th. Bravo Company fought the first battle with the help of the 101st Airborne. Then it was Alpha’s turn.

1 OCT 68
Don Dien Sinna (Sinna Plantation)
[upper Ho Bo Woods area]

Alpha company air assaulted into the Don Dien Sinna rubber plantation two miles south of the Mushroom, conducted a RIF and returned to Pershing.

Bravo company air assaulted into the same area and got into a firefight (supported by gunships) resulting in 11 VC captured, and an estimated dozen VC killed. Bravo had one wounded in action and evacuated.

Delta company was flown in to support Bravo and they established a night defensive position (NDP) on the landing zones at (XT589274). The next day they searched around the area of Bravo’s contact. But, other than sniper fire, there was no contact.


“On 1 October while combat assaulting into the northern Ho Bo Woods, B and C Companies, 2-12 Infantry, observed five VC running into two tunnels and engaged with organic weapons, LFT, and CS gas. After killing 14 VC and taking 11 VC (POW), Co B, 2-12 Inf, located a huge cache of the 7th Cu Chi Battalion Rear Detachment. The cache partially camouflaged, was located vic XT589277 and contained 87 x 82mm rds, 29 cases of RPG-2 rds, 30 cases of AK ammo, 73 bangalore torpedoes, 15 cases 60mm ammo, 7 pistols of assorted types, 1x60mm mortar, 5 lbs of documents, 66,000 VN piasters, and 1 complete surgical kit.”
[SOURCE: 2d Bde, 25th Div AAR Op Toan Thang (II) 1Jun68-16Feb69]


2 OCT 68
As Delta and Bravo searched the area around X. Tu Duan; Charlie riffed one klick north of Stuart to X. Rung Cay where they engaged an estimated three VC. Charlie Company then moved southeast to the vic of Ap An Binh where they received sniper fire.

B & C Co.’s set up a night defensive position at Xa [village] Tu Duan.
Alpha’s Night Laager was at Pershing. Charlie was at FSB Stuart near Trang Bang.

Just days before the opening of the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, hundreds of (perhaps between 200 to 350) Mexican students are gunned down by the Mexican military and police forces in what has become known as the TLATELOLCO MASSACRE.

15,000 (+/-) marched to the Plaza de Tres Cultura at Tlateloco where they were surrounded and shot at. A recently declassified U.S. State Department analysis concluded that the Mexican government permitted the demonstrations in order to arrest student leaders and “was prepared to use force in whatever degree necessary to achieve this objective.” The bodies were toted away on trucks and by the next morning the plaza was swept clean. News reports on TV and radio were almost nonexistent; mentioning only some 20 students and two police dead.

We all remember the photo of the two winning athletes ‘Black Power salutes’ – those closed fists were in solidarity with the people of Mexico.

3 OCT 68
A Co. riffed around Dry Lake and returned to Pershing.
B & D Co.’s returned to FSB Pershing in mid-afternoon after patrolling around Don Dien Sinna.
C Co. riffed up to the village of Bao Me two klicks north of Trang Bang and engaged an estimated five VC with the support of gunships – resulting in a two VC body count. They then returned to Trang Bang.

Bravo company machine gunner Paul “Jocko” Duncan bitten by a snake and evacuated.

4 OCT 68
Bravo company remained at Pershing for the day as
Co. A air assaulted into an area south of the Boi Loi’s where they found a VC body killed earlier by artillery. They then returned to base.
Co. C riffed northwest of Trang Bang to the vicinity of the hamlet [Ap] of Gai Lam near the cemetery off Six Alpha road.
There was a lot of movement detected by radar near Trang Bang that evening and the VC were engaged by organic 81mm mortars from FSB Stuart with unknown results.

5 OCT 68
A Co. moved out of Pershing, riffing north of Dry Lake to the village of Cha Ray. From there they moved to the rice fields west of Suoi Sup, and on to the rubber plantation between Bo Heo and Ong Dam. Then back to Pershing.
B Co. remained at Pershing for the day.
C Co. left FSB Stuart to form a blocking force just south of the bridge.
DCo. riffed NW out of Pershing across Six Alpha and the stream before turning northeast to a checkpoint one klick north of Square Lake. They passed near Square Lake on their way back to Pershing.




7 OCT 68

B Co. KIA’s:
Pfc. Aaron F. Ferguson (20) of Provo, Ut;
Sgt. Nathaniel Kelley (23) of Stockbridge, GA;
Pfc. Roy R. Koening (21) of Rosedale, NY;
Pfc. Walter G. Rice, Jr. (18) of Bristolville, OH;
Spc4 William C. Shuman (21) of Waldoboro, ME;
Pfc. Kenneth H. Sills (20) of Spokane, WA; and
Co. B Medic Pfc. Ramon A. Flores (18) of San Antonio, TX perished in Hua Nghia Province.

Spc4 Larry Fontana was acting as a sergeant that day — a ‘acting-jack’ sergeant — and was on point with Bravo companies’ 2nd platoon, when they entered the village of Tam Dinh; “The biggest fight we were in was 4 klicks east of Pershing October 7, 1968. Bravo and Alpha went out to make contact with a large force of NVA spotted there the past evening,” recalled Fontana. “Good as gold Alpha abreast to our left.”

“My platoon made initial contact in the middle of a village and did some damage ñ but we got a bloody nose,” said Fontana. Bravo beat back the NVA first, and then “we could have got out without a scratch…. “there was a window of opportunity after blooding their noses, but [a officer] made us stay.”

“Fought off and on all day and dug in that night with two companies from the 101st Airborne Division,” said Fontana. In addition to the Airborne, there was the two companies of the 2-12th — Alpha and Bravo. “NVA hit us with the kitchen sinks and came charging in. We were fighting from open foxholes and one strand of concertina [Barbed wire. – b.h.]. Fontana continues, “No food or water, but plenty of CLAYMORE MINES!!! Saved our bacon without a doubt. We had (claymores) all over the place and broke up [the North Vietnamese Army’s 101st Regiment] after three charges against us” stated Fontana. “Probably lasted and hour, but seemed like eternity.”

2nd BRIGADE JOURNAL for 7Oct68:

[COURTESY: Allen Suydam (Co. B).]


7- 8 OCT 68 ~ Tam Dinh and Night Laager Site (XT52248)
7- 8 OCT 68 ~ Tam Dinh and Night Laager Site (XT52248)


After a day long battle in and around Tam Dinh on the seventh, companies B and D, with two companies of the 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry (101st Air Assault Division), coiled into a night defensive position north-west of the village.

On this map, Tam Dinh is the dark-green crescent shape
at lower right quarter. Bravo company made October 7th’s initial contact
with the enemy within this village.

The RED DOT is the location of the Oct 7ñ8th night laager.
Outer circle = Maximum effective M-16 range.
Inner circle = M-79 Grenade Launcher range.

Suoi Sup – another notorious VC village – is the dark-green area
at lower left.


8 OCT 68
Co. A WIA:
Spc4 Danny A. Smith

Co. A at FSB Pershing
Co. C at FSB Stuart and Trang Bang bridge
Co.’s B & D (along with Co.’s B & D 3-187th Inf) in night laager (XT552248) in vicinity of yesterdays contact.

“We had a 147 body count, but I KNOW we got more in those charges,” Larry Fontana wrote. “There were oxcart tracks going back and forth all over the fields when daylight hit. These guys knew how to clean a battlefield. Even so, I saw a big pile of AKs and RPGs before we left to patrol that morning after.”

Fontana continues, “the whole thing was, we fought a major engagement from simple foxholes and not a hardspot like other famous fights in the 25th.”

“Bravo pulled out after two days – we pretty much had the casualties – and then Alpha and the rest of the battalion fought them on the run ’till the 11th. It was during these battles that Alpha got their MIA. Funny, I never knew that happened, losing a guy. Stuff like that spreads like wildfire, but we never heard about it.” [FONTANA]

See Documents

[COURTESY; Allen Suydam (Co. B).]


[The following extract courtesy of Co. B’s Allen Suydam. ñ bh]

Ground Commander’s SITREP
080001H October to 082400H October 1968

2-12Inf (-) (XT513260): Co A, at Bn (-) NL [Pershing. – bh], while Co C provided night location security FSB Stuart and Trang Bang Bridge vic XT501194. Co’s B and D 3-187 Inf remain OPCON to 2-12 Inf. Co’s B and D 2-12 Inf along with Co’s B and D 3-187 Inf maintained NL in area of contact vic XT552248. At first light, Co’s A and B established block psns from vic XT538225 to XT545238. Co C cdt extensive RIF from NL into block psns. Meanwhile, Co D remained at NL providing local security and acting as Bn RRF along with Co’s B and D 3-187 Inf. Later, Co’s B and D 3-187 rejoined parent unit and cdt move to Cu Chi BC. At the end of the day, Co’s A, B and D returned to Bn (-) NL, while Co C returned to NL on Trang Bang Bridge. (Delayed Entry: Ref 25th Div SITREP 7 Oct 68, contact commencing at 0850H. Add 18 NVA KIA; 21 AK47, 9 RPG-2 RLs, 1 1/2 lbs documents, 1 82mm mortar sight, 2 lbs med supplies cptr, and 18 82mm ammo, 500 rds SA ammo, 8 [unintelligable], 200 rds M60 ammo dest.)

At 0050H vic XT552248 Co’s A and B 2-12 Inf along with Co’s B and D 3-187 Inf received unk no rds SA, AW, M79, RPG fire and 35 rds 82mm mortar fire resulting in 7 US WIA (2 evac). Returned fire with SA, AW, M79, Arty, LFT, and mortar fire resulting in 72 NVA KIA; 1 NVA PW, 1 82mm mortar, 18 AK47, 1 SKS carbine, 2 RPD LMGs, 1 radio and 3 lbs of documents cptr. At 1020H vic XT514208 Co C apprehended 1 detainee. At 1030H vic XT515205 Co C engaged 3 NVA with SA and AW fire resulting in 1 NVA KIA; 1 NVA PW, 1 AK47 and 1/2 lb documents cptr. At 1650H vic XT513207 Co C engaged 3 NVA wih SA and AW resulting in 2 NVA PW. Night: 4 sqd size and 3 plat size APs; 12 LPs.
[SOURCE: 25th Division SITREP courtesy Allen Suydam.]



9 OCT 68
Co.’s A, B and D at Fire Support Base Pershing
Co. C at FSB Stuart and the Trang Bang bridge

Co. A combat assaulted (CA) by air to:
LZ (XT550283), 4 klicks NE of Pershing (and
south of the Ho Bo woods),
LZ (XT565215) 6 klicks SE near X. Tan Han,
and to XT566303, another LZ near the Ho Bo’s.
After a day of patrolling they returned to the Battalion
Night Laager at Pershing.

Co. B CA from Pershing to:
LZ (XT567283) south of the Ho Bo’s and some 1 1/2 klicks east of Alpha’s LZ.
LZ (XT565215), with Co. A at Tan Han.

Co. C, at Stuart, performed a ground Reconnaissance In Force (RIF) to:
XT504196 other side of TB river at Cau Chua, then
moved NE 1 1/2 klicks to an oxcart road at
XT521204 where Co. C rec’d 2 rds of RPG fire; negative results; rtn w/organic wpns/81mm; results unk, where they moved south along the road
through An Binh towards Hwy 1 and returned to Stuart.
Co. D during the day RIF’d north and east of Pershing;
moving down the “entrance road” to its intersection with 6A,
then swinging NE to a check point at XT516267, Thus
south-east 1/2 klick to XT531263, then
south-southwest to XT527250 and back to Pershing.
During this rif around Dry Lake, Delta had 2 detainees
at XT513260.




Eugene Allen Handrahan October 10, 1968


10 OCT 68
A Co. KIAs:
Spc4 Sanley G. Denisowski, DSC (21) of Utica, NY;
Cpl. Michael E. Evans (20) of Greensboro, GA;
Sgt. Baynes B. McSwain, Jr. (22) of San Marcos, TX; and

Cpl. Michael E. Randall, Sr., DSC (21) of Noblesville, IN perished in Hua Nghia Province.

[Pfc. Randall and Spc4 Denisowski were awarded the nations second highest award for valor ñ the Distinguished Service Cross.]

A Co. MIA:
Spc4 Eugene A. Handrahan (21) of St. Paul, MN was listed as Missing in Action after this battle.

Co. C 2/27 Inf (Wolfhounds) KIA:
Sgt. Ronnie Blair (20),
Pfc. Angel L. Ramos (20) of Jersey City, NJ, and
Spc4 Waymon L. Triggs (21) of Houston, TX persihed in Hua Nghia Province.π

[πBlair, Ramos and Triggs were previously listed as Co. A KIA’s, but according to “The Wall” Website and Mike Almer they were Wolfhounds. – b.h.]

[A Co. 2/12th Inf]
During a series of running battles that started on the 7th, Alpha company was approaching a hedgerow when an enemy machine gun opened up on them. Grenadier Handrahan, who was walking point left-flank,and two others were hit. The two other GIs were under arial observation and determined to be dead. Gene yelled that he was hit, and repeated attempts were made to get to him. After a soldier was killed tying to get to him, the squad was ordered back in order that the hedgerow could be bombed. The commander on site made that call late in the day. It wasn’t untill the next day that the company went back in. They found the bodies of the two GIs, but no trace of Gene Handrahan was found. A large bomb crater was at Gene’s last known location.

Sgt. Baynes Ballew McSwain was a (12 Feb68) graduate of the Non-commisioned Officer Course (NCOC) Class 9-68 at the Main Base of Ft. Benning.



“…. 101440H Co’s A and C/4-9 Inf OPCON to 2-12 Inf. Effective 101500H Co’s B and C/2-27 Inf rtn to Bn control. At 0750H Co A/2-12 Inf cdt airmobile cbt aslt fm NL to LZ vic XT530224. At 1125H Co’s A and D/2-12 Inf cdt airmobile cbt aslt fm NL to LZ vic XT530226. B/2-12 Inf at 0735H cdt airmobile cbt aslt fm NL to LZ vic XT517217. Co C/2-12 cbt RIF aslt fm vic XT513213 to LZ vic XT530226. At 2034H radar on the Trang Bang Bridge spotted 4 VC; engaged w/81mm resulting in 4 VC KIA (poss). Co C vic XT501194 on Trang Bang Bridge picked up movement and engaged w/81mm: negative results. Co A vic XT531224 rec’d SA fire fm an unk number of VC resulting in 12 US WIA (evac), 2 US KIA (evac) and 3 US MIA; rtn fire w/SA/AW and arty resulting in 2 VC KIA (BC) and 15 VC KBA (poss). Co C vic XT506191 engaged 3 VC w/SA and AW; VC rtn w/AK47; negative results; VC losses unk.”
[SOURCE: Unknown OR-LL from Texas Tech Univ Vietnam Archives http://www.vietnam.ttu.edu ]

“On 10 Oct 68, units from the 2-12 Inf, 2-27 Inf and 4-9 Inf made contact with an estimated battalion sized enemy unit vicinity XT531224 and continued contact until 2000 hrs, resulting in 26 VC KIA and 85 VC KIA (poss.].”
[SOURCE: 2d Bde, 25th Div AAR Op Toan Thang (II) 1Jun68-16Feb69]



10 OCT 68 BATTLE SITE...... Xa Ong Dam (Vicinty of XT 5322) - X. Lam Vo
10 OCT 68 BATTLE SITE…… Xa Ong Dam (Vicinty of XT 5322) – X. Lam Vo

This map is approx. 3 kicks southeast of FSB Pershing, 6 klicks NE of Trang Bang, 6 klicks NW of Trung Lap. Each black square is one klick (6/10th mile) by one klick.
Dark-green patch at top center is the rubber plantation commonly known as ‘the Little Rubber’ –
Bo Heo is just a klick to the NE.

At the bottom of the map is the edge of the ville of Lam Vo – the battle site.

[NOTE: The fold in this 1969-70 picto-map hides the wording of X. Ong Dam. I know from my person experiences with this map that it must have been photographed prior to the Spring of 1969 because many of the features and villages were ‘Rome Plowed’ out of existence. This made map reading tough at times – if you didn’t keep track of your location on the ground relative the map’s “grid” location.]




10 OCT 68 Lam Vo Battle
10 OCT 68 Lam Vo Battle

Yellow Arrow….. Landing Zone (LZ).
Blue Arrow…… Point of initial contact.
Orange Arrow….. Vicinity of MIA & KIA losses.

Reading this Pictomap:
The pale white line running diagonally across map is an ox-cart trail. To the south of this is Lam Vo (1). [Note: Clusters of huts of the same village were numbered. There was a Lam Vo (1), and – to the east near “Round Lake” – Lam Vo (2).]

The thin green lines are hedgerows. The masses of green are thick woods, hedgerows or jungle – the small pale yellow squares within them are hootches. The larger pale yellow squares and the masses of pale yellow are open rice paddies or gardens. The green line running from the center-right curving to the top of this map is a small stream boarded by brush. [Area behind orange arrow.]

Fire Support Base Pershing is off this map 3 1/2 klicks to the NW; and Fire Support Base Stuart (Trang Bang) off map 5 klicks to the SW.




“The Distinguished Service Cross is presented to Stanley George Denisowski, Specialist Fourth Class, U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Company A, 2d Battalion, 12th Infantry, 2d Brigade, 25th Infantry Division. Specialist Four Denisowski distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 10 October 1968 as a team leader during a reconnaissance-in-force mission near Cu Chi. Specialist Denisowski’s company came under heavy small arms and automatic weapons fire from a fortified Viet Cong base camp. During the initial barrage the point man was wounded in an open, unprotected field. Specialist Denisowski quickly deployed his fire team to a location from which effective covering fire could be rendered while his squad leader attempted to rescue the wounded man. Ignoring a hail of bullets, he then maneuvered across the field and placed accurate and effective fire on the communists which permitted his stricken comrade to be evacuated. Wounded in the leg during the exchange of fire, Specialist Denisowski ignored shouts from his comrades to withdraw and continued to defend his position, inflicting heavy casualties on the Viet Cong until he was mortally wounded by the hostile fusillade. Specialist Four Denisowski’s extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty, at the cost of his life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.”

General Orders No. 420 February 6, 1969

“The Distinguished Service Cross is presented to Baynes Bailew McSwain, Jr., Sergeant, U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Company A, 2d Battalion, 12th Infantry, 2d Brigade, 25th Infantry Division.

Sergeant McSwain distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 10 October 1968 as squad leader during a reconnaissance-in-force mission. His company came under heavy small arms and automatic weapons fire from a fortified Viet Cong base camp. Sergeant McSwain’s platoon was pinned down and the point man lay wounded in an open field completely exposed to the communists’ barrage. Though wounded in the leg by the initial volley, he immediately deployed his men to provide covering fire and disregarding his safety, crawled further into the enemy line of fire to help his stricken comrade. Shelding the man with his body, he quickly administered first aid and was pulling him to safety when he was mortally wounded by the hostile fusillade. Sergeant McSwain’s extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty, at the cost of his life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.”

General Orders No. 404 February 5, 1969

“The Distinguished Service Cross is presented to Michael Eugene Randall, Sr., Private First Class, U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Company A, 2d Battalion, 12th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division. Private First Class Randall distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 10 October 1968 while serving as a machine gunner during a reconnaissance-in-force mission. Private Randall’s company came under heavy small arms and automatic weapons fire from a fortified Viet Cong base camp. His platoon was pinned down and his squad leader and point man lay wounded in an open field, entirely exposed to the enemy barrage. With complete disregard for his safety, he advanced through the communists cross fire to the front of the platoon and kept a steady fusillade on the enemy positions, allowing his comrades to evacuate the wounded men. Continuing his one-man assault, Private Randall concentrated his fire directly into the hostile bunker’s gun port until another concealed enemy position opened fire, wounding him and damaging his machine gun. After returning to his platoon to secure a rifle, he advanced on the second Viet Cong fortification, killing the two occupants. Although suffering from his wounds, he took grenades from his ammunition pouches and ran across an open area toward an enemy machine gun position that hd his platoon pinned down. As Private Randall was tossing a grenade into the enemy bunker, the Viet Cong opened fire and he was mortally wounded. Private First Class Randall’s extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty, at the cost of his life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.”

General Orders No. 409 February 5, 1969


Alpha company’s Bud Cauley wrote “[Bruce Reiter] was the best. Bruce was one of three guys who survived an air strike called directly in on their position. [Ken] White, Reiter and Brown crawled into a bomb crater and watched the whole process take place. When they walked out, no one knew they were still alive. I was one of the guys who replaced [the WIA’s and KIA’s].


Back in the states, all the Network TV Evening News programs were reporting a “lull in fighting” in Vietnam. [Vanderbilt Archives. 1968]
On the October 11th NBC TV Evening News David Brinkley reported that “400 North Vietnamese escaped an American trap near Saigon.” [Vanderbilt Archives. 1968.10.11 VN/Fighting :24:50-:25:10…Friday…NBC]
ABC reported that “400 US infantrymen were flown to battle by copter to intercept a Communist battalion. 26 enemy and 6 Americans were killed. 16 Americans were wounded.”
[SOURCE: Vanderbilt University’s Television News Archives. 68.10.11 VN/COPTER CRASH/FIGHTING :15:40-:16:10…Friday…ABC]


The 25th Division Artillery Quarterly Operation Report 16 NOV 1968 had this to say; “…. on 10 October …the 2/12 Inf received sniper fire in grid XT5322. During the day, 3,107 rounds of artillery were fired into the target areas despite frequent and prolonged check-fires for gun-ships and air-strikes. During the night, 3,000 more rounds were fired. When maneuver elements swept the area on 11 October, 26 enemy bodies were located; 13 of these were officially credited to artillery.” And the report further stated “on 11 October, D/3/13 (8″ Howitzer) moved from Cu Chi to FSB Stuart III (XT4919)….” [Source: 25th DIV ARTY OPREP 16 NOV 68]

16 OCT 68
Co. A KIA:
Pfc. Richard N. “Doc” DeAngelis (32) of Wallingford, Connecticut perished in Hau Nghia Province.

The US Surreme Court refused to stop the shipment of the National Guard’s 1/18th Armored Cavalry regiment (Los Angeles) to Vietnam. Members had filed a law suit to stop the deployment. [Sin Loi guys! You DID sign on the dotted line and raise your hands. – Sarge] [SOURCE: Vanderbuilt Univ. Television Archives.]

23 OCT 68
Co. C WIA:
Pvt. Edward A. Wales

25 OCT 68
D Co. KIA:
1LT Edward E. Golder III (24) of Baltimore, MD perished in Hua Nghia Province.

26 OCT 68
D Co. KIA:
Spc4 William G. Smith (19) of Oklahoma City, OK perished in Hua Nghia Province.

E Co. KIA:
Spc4 Donald L. Perry (20) of Taft, CA perished in Binh Duong Province.

31 OCT 68
Co. B KIA:
Sgt. James Alan Cox, of Hollis, NY, Co. B 2nd platoon, perished in Hua Nghia province.

According to Larry Fontana; “[Sgt. Cox] was killed by a Chicom grenade while walking point east of Stuart.” According to Pfc. “Tony” Chliek it was a claymore in a tree near the village of Ap An Binh (XT513197) ñ 1 1/2 klicks NEE of FSB Stuart. Sergeant Cox was the platoon sergeant of the 2nd platoon.



In November a squad from Alpha company was caught “sandbagging” an ambush and according to Larry Fontnana “every one of those twelve guys got a Article 15 and busted down a rank.”

[The Sarge Sez:
“‘Sandbagging’ is GI slang for not doing what you were supposed to do- in this case pulling an ambush. Ambush locations were determined by officers at headquarters at base and they didn’t always make sense – common or otherwise. WE DID OUR JOBS…. but not one of us was fool enough to put ourselves in mortal danger of being wiped out by setting up at a bad ambush location when we had some control over it. The Major who thought these things up didn’t have to go. WE DID! And we did our best to keep ourselves alive – even if it meant sandbagging an ambush or two.”]

In theNovember 68 election, Richard ‘Tricky Dick’ Nixon wins.

1 NOV 58

Show-an-pony celebration in Trang Bang town and elsewhere in South Viet-Nam.

3 NOV 68
E Co. KIA:
Spc4 Joe L. Mascarenas (21) of Pueblo, CO perished in Binh Duong Province.

4 NOV 68
Richard Nixon elected President.

6 NOV 68
Co. A’s Pfc. Harry E. Roderick had a daughter born on this date.

8 NOV 68
Seven members of Company B wounded by boobytrap on the northern outskirts of Trang Bang ( in Xa Gia Huynh).
[SOURCE: Blog by Tony Chliek. http://bte-vietnam-stories.blogspot.com/2006/03/chapter-14-wounded.html ]

10 NOV 68
A daughter is born to Sgt. and Mrs. Perry E. Acox.

19 NOV 68
Co. B’s Private and Mrs. Jose S. Baldez had a baby daughter.

24 NOV 68

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