Army Reporter information
for C/1/9 CAV 1 CAV

For date 690127


C/1/9 CAV 1 CAV was a US Army unit
Primary service involved, US Army
Binh Long Province, III Corps, South Vietnam
Location, Loc Ninh
Description: The following is an edited version of an article titled "Cav gunships zap VC" dated 27 Jan 1969. Helicopter gunship pilots from the C/1/9th Cav, 1st Cav Div and division artillerymen killed 41 enemy soldiers on an early morning reconnaissance mission 12 miles west of here. The gunships, supporting the 2nd Bde, spotted the enemy after receiving automatic weapons fire and engaged them with rockets, machineguns and 40mm cannons. "We had been flying a general recon mission in the area around Loc Ninh when we were diverted south to direct an air strike," said WO John Jelich, pilot of the scout ship. "I was flying at tree-top level when I took 40 to 50 rounds of automatic weapons fire. I flew about a kilometer to the north when I began receiving a heavier volume of fire." Calling in the grid locations of both enemy positions, he proceeded south to his mission, escorted by a Cobra gunship piloted by WO Michael Myhre. "I flew over a section of tall trees," said Jelich, "and spotted a large group of 45 to 50 individuals sitting below in what appeared to be a training class. I could see several hooches and bunkers in the immediate area. I don't think they even noticed me at first because I came in low. I banked hard and came around again." In the meantime, Myhre maneuvered his Cobra into a firing position. "I lowered my nose," Myhre recalled, "and rolled in, dumping three pairs of rockets on the location. On Jelich's next pass over the area the enemy opened up on him with automatic weapons fire. He was fortunate enough to pull away without taking any hits. "I rolled in and expended the rest of my rockets and sprayed the area with mini-gun 20mm cannon fire," said Jelich. By then, a second team had arrived from Phuoc Vinh. "I came into the area at what I thought to be a safe, 2,000 feet when I started receiving a heavy volume of automatic weapons fire," said CWO Thomas Harnisher, pilot of the second team's recon ship. "I could see the tracers whizzing all around my ship," he continued. "I pulled out of the line of fire, dipped my nose toward the ground and sprayed the area with my mini-gun." Harnisher was followed by a Cobra gunship, which rolled in and expended its rockets on the fleeing enemy. The gunships accounted for 41 enemy dead. "After we finished expending our ordinance, I directed in an air strike on the same area," said Myhre. "Two Air Force F-100 fighters dumped bombs on the enemy's position with no assessment."
Comments: WO Jelich, John; LOH pilot; ; WO Myhre, Michael; Cobra pilot; ; CWO Harnisher, Thomas; LOH pilot; ;

The source for this information was 6901AR.AVN supplied by Les Hines


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Date posted on this site: 05/16/2021