unit history information
for B/7/1 CAV

For date 690104

B/7/1 CAV was a US Army unit
21 ARVN DIV was a Vietnamese Army unit
Primary service involved, US Army
South Vietnam
Location, Vi Thanh
Description: The 7/1st Cav ORLL includes an After Action Report: B/7/1st was conducting a VR SW of Vi Thanh (WR190680) in support of a 21st ARVN Div operation. While conducting the VR, 4 armed men were observed running toward a tree line. After receiving clearance to fire, the gun team rolled in to suppress the area with rockets and mini guns. Upon completion of the firing runs, the scout aircraft returned to check the damage. As they approached the area, they received heavy automatic weapons fire. The lead OH-6A crashed out of control against a tree line and burst into flames on impact. The observer was dead inside the flaming wreckage, however, the pilot managed to crawl clear. The scout wingman attempted to land by the burning helicopter but the enemy's automatic weapons fire severly wounded him. He was shot in the leg, had one finger shot off and was temporarily blinded by shattering plexiglass. His scout observer took control and landed the aircraft approximately 1,000 meters away from the action. The weapons platoon leader in the lead Cobra spotted the pilot of the first LOH crawling away from the fire. He immediately landed his Cobra to pick him up. The pilot of the Cobra dismounted and went to the LOH pilot's aid, as his wingman began making gun runs on the closing VC. With this covering fire, the Weapons Platoon Leader and his pilot were able to get the scout pilot onto the ammo bay door and fly clear of the contested area. As soon as this rescue was completed, the Cobra wingman located the second LOH and landed to evacuate the crew. In this case, the Cobra pilot got out of his helicopter to help the scout observer carry the seriously wounded scout pilot to the Cobra. Once they had placed the wounded pilot on the ammo bay door, the second scout observer got in the front seat of the Cobra and the Cobra pilot used his own body as a shield to hold the wounded officer on the ammo bay door during the 30 minute evacuation flight to Binh Thuy. This operation proved the value of the Cobra in roles other than that of a weapons platform, while also exemplifying the initiative and ingenuity of the Dutchmaster Team.

The source for this information was 7/1 CAV ORLL dated 14 Feb 69

Additional information is available on CD-ROM.

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Date posted on this site: 05/13/2023