Pacific Stars and Stripes information
4 AVN 4 INF was a US Army unit
for 4 AVN 4 INF
For date 680225
7/17 CAV was a US Army unit
1/69 ARM was a US Army unit
1/22 INF was a US Army unit
Primary service involved, US Army
Kontum Province, II Corps, South Vietnam
Description: The following is an edited version of an article titled "VC Offensive Hit Low Point in Viet Highlands."
Camp Enari (IO) - Hundreds of enemy troops lie dead in the wake of the enemy's Tet offensive in the Central Highlands. In and around Kontum more than 980 North Vietnamese and Viet Cong bodies were counted by 4th Inf. Div. and other allied soldiers after bitter street fighting. Some 260 enemy soldiers died in an eight-hour battle with an Army Republic of Vietnam unit and the 4th Aviation Bn. A joint effort by the division's 1st Bn., 69th Armor and a battalion of Korean soldiers from the Capital Tiger Div. resulted in the death of 193 enemy. The Koreans surrounded a reinforced battalion of North Vietnamese after an exhaustive, 40-day chase through dense jungle near Phu Cat, then called in the U.S. armored unit when the enemy finally holed up. The 4th Engineer Bn., serving as infantry, killed 2? enemy soldiers after being airlifted into Pleiku to help quell North Vietnamese activities. The engineers suffered no casualties. Tet was only 15 minutes old, when the 24th North Vietnamese Army Regt., which had taken part in the bitter battle at Dak To last November, began to rake Kontum with mortar fire. Ground attacks followed against lightly defended South Vietnamese and U.S. military compounds in the area. Failing to dent the compounds, the enemy shifted his attack to civilian areas. A Viet Cong unit occupied the post office and other official buildings in the early hours, and the city market place was overrun by enemy soldiers. The 1st Bn., 22nd Inf. joined the Kontum battle the following afternoon and began a door-to-door clearing of buildings - a type of warfare reminiscent of that in World War II. The gunships of the 7th Sq. 17th Air Cav. were used to clear the city's market place of the enemy. During the following week an ARVN artillery unit, learning of an enemy battalion-sized force outside Kontum, caught the force in the open with a wall of steel. A sweep of the area later revealed 150 NVA killed by the deadly rain of artillery. A week after the fighting had broken out, relative peace returned to the smoldering city. ???Pleiku the 3rd ARVN ?????? pinned an enemy battalion ????? a small village and ????? 4th Aviation Co. gunships???? The helicopter crew seeing an armored personnel carrier under enemy rocket attack rolled in and marked the target with smoke for a nearby gunship. Several passes were made with the gunship riddling the position with rockets. Enemy soldiers raced to escape the deadly fire only to face the gunship's door gunners. Some eight hours after the gunships had been called in bodies of 260 NVA were counted. The Korean force was being snarled by enemy snipers when five tanks from the 1st Bn., 69th Armor were dispatched to help out. In the next three days, the two ground units with the assistance of air strikes killed 193 enemy and captured 126 enemy weapons along with a large find of rice, medical supplies, packs and gear. "They acted like war veterans," said 1st Lt. James N. Ogden III of Mobile, Ala., speaking about the 4th Eng. Bn.'s battle in Pleiku. The "veterans" he was referring to included nine men with only a few days in country, five motor pool mechanics and scarcely any man who had come under enemy fire previously. Nonetheless, the engineers managed to kill 21 enemy soldiers while losing none of their own.
The source for this information was 6802pss.avn supplied by Les Hines
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