Helicopter Crew Member Medal of Honor information
for 173 AHC
Callsign = ROBIN HOOD

For date 680108

173 AHC was a US Army unit
9 INF DIV was a US Army unit
Primary service involved, US Army
South Vietnam
Location, Can Giuoc River
Description: ??? Gary Wetzel was flying as a door gunner on a ROBIN HOOD UH-1D from the 173rd Assault Helicopter Company. They were part of an Eagle Flight of 14 slicks carrying over 80 troops which were to be inserted as a blocking force to prevent retreating enemy from reaching prepared positions near the Can Giuoc River. The large VC unit had been in heavy contact with units of the 9th Infantry Division and were trying to retreat to prepared positions in the tree lines east of the river. The flight was heading for a large LZ along the river comprising 30 or 40 acreas of wet rice paddy, bounded on all sides by heavy stands of palm and banana trees. An air strike had been placed across the river by mistake and their gunships only had time for one pass on the tree lines before the flight began its approach. THe LZ was hot and as soon as the troops were on the ground, they were caught in a crossfire from bunkers in the trees along the west and north sides of the LZ. Within minutes the majority of the troops were wounded or pinned down in the open rice paddy. CPT William F. Dismukes was flying Wetzel's ship in the number four position of the first element. The lead ship took them in close to the west tree line and at 50 feet from touchdown they were met with a hail of automatic weapons fire. They continued on in and just before touchdown the aircraft was hit by a rocket propelled grenade which blew out the left front of the Huey, knocking out CPT Dismukes and killing the aircraft commander, .

The source for this information was The Helicopter War P:101

Additional information is available on CD-ROM.

Please send additions or corrections to: Gary Roush Email address: webmaster@vhpa.org

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Date posted on this site: 05/16/2021