HISTORY OF THE
192ND ASSAULT HELICOPTER COMPANY
10TH COMBAT AVIATION BATTALION
1ST AVIATION BRIGADE
1 January 1968 - 31 December 1968
1Lt George E. Dille
UNIT HISTORICAL OFFICER
PAUL G. STRINGER
Phan Thiet, Republic of Vietnam
The 192nd Assault Helicopter
Company's crest (depicted above) was designed and drawn by Major
Smith, then the Company XO, and Warrant Officer Tidey. It was
conceived by Major Smith, who laid down the basic desired design,
and then turned the final work over to Warrant Officer Tidey.
The crest was completed and presented to Major Baker, the Company
Commander, who approved it in early September of 1967.
All of the major items of
the crest were chosen for a significant reason. The shield was
chosen to represent our offensive as well as defensive capabilities.
The "flying white horse" represented the unit's task
upon arrival in Vietnam; the aerial support of the Republic of
Korea's "White Horse" Division. The buttressed line
dividing the top and bottom portions of the shield was selected
for its heraldic portrayal of an embattlement. It was thought
to be very appropriate to incorporate such a symbol into the crest
since the unit was to leave for Vietnam in early October of 1967.
The colors used in the crest
were also chosen for a symbolic meaning. The teal blue and gold
are the colors of Army aviation. The black was chosen as it represented
our night flying capabilities, the white for the "White Horse"
The motto "WE BOW TO
NONE" was selected to depict our stated ambition and professional
competence to equal or surpass those who are "ABOVE THE BEST."
MISSION: The mission of the 192nd
AHC is for direct support of the 3/506th Infantry, 101st Airborne
Division (Airmobile), and general support for the Phan Thiet MACV,
Bao Loc MACV, Dalat MACV, 53rd Regiment ARVN, Phan Rang MACV,
5/27 Artillery and the 44th ARVN Regiment, within the DSA II Corps.
As the effectiveness of the Polecats and Tiger Sharks increase,
more missions are added because of their professionalism in accomplishing
In 1968, the 192nd Assault Helicopter Company, Polecats and
Tiger Sharks, flew 25,742 hours, carried 119,402 passengers,
hauled 2,779 tons of cargo, medevaced over 250 troops, and
had over 300 KBA and destroyed over 225 structures.
The 192nd AHC participated in the following operations:
McLainII, Banjo Royce, and Double Eagle I, II, III, IV.*
COMMAND AND CONTROL: The commander
of the Polecats and Tiger Sharks as they arrived in Phan Thiet
was Major Ronald L. Baker. On 10 April 1968 Major Charles W.
Emrick assumed command of the 192nd AHC. Major Paul G. Stringer
took control of the Lonesome Polecats from Major Emrick on 11
* Extracted from the ANNUAL
SUPPLEMENT, HISTORY OF THE 10TH COMBAT AVIATION BATTALION, 17TH
COMBAT AVIATION GROUP, 1ST AVIATION BRIGADE, 1 JANUARY 1968 -
31 DECEMBER 1968
During 1968, the 192nd Assault
Helicopter Company was operational in the areas surrounding Phan
Thiet, Bao Loc, Dalat, Phan Rang, and Song Mao with occasional
trips to Dong Ba Thin, Nha Trang, and Ban Me Thuot.
On 15 January, orders were received from the 17th Combat Aviation
Group assigning the 192nd Assault Helicopter Company to the 10th
Battalion. The Polecats and Tiger Sharks were promptly placed in
direct support of the 3-506th Infantry, 1st Brigade, of the 101st
Airborne Division, for Operation McLain II, to secure and hold
operations at Phan Thiet. The 192nd AHC, originally assigned to
the 268th CAB and located at Phu Hiep, moved all of its assets by
organic aircraft and Navy LSTs to Phan Thiet beginning on l8 January.
Even as the advanced party arrived, combat mission requests were
received and honored. The building of billeting and operational
areas became secondary to the maximum effort exerted in combat
The 192nd AHC spent most
of February in the defense of Phan Thiet, which was under constant
siege during the month. Savage fighting took place throughout
the Phan Thiet area at times coming within less than 500 meters
of the airfield. The Polecats and Tiger Sharks have averaged
more than three combat assaults per day, to include night resupply.
The first night that Phan Thiet airfield was mortared, a night
hunter team was dispatched. The team was able to locate the enemy
positions while the Airfield took 8 enemy rounds. Since then
the airfield has never received more than eight rounds of mortar
in any attack. On 25 February enemy mortars struck the ARVN ammo
dump at Phan Thiet airfield and secondary explosions continued
for over five hours, damaging twelve aircraft and injuring four
The 192nd AHC continued its
support to the 3-506th Task Force at Phan Thiet, with the mission
of supporting MACV units predominately in the Bao Loc area.
Enemy activity slackened off from the previous month and assignments
were directed in search and destroy missions. Requirements for
night support remained high, particularly with hazardous patrol
extractions conducted on the night of 13 and 21 March. In both
instances, the eight to ten man patrols were receiving heavy fire
from company sized enemy forces. Exceptionally well coordinated
gunship and slick employment in conjunction with artillery and
TAC air suppressive fires resulted in the successful extractions
without injuries or incidents.
The 192nd AHC continued to support
Task Force 3-506th Infantry and the 101st Airborne Division in
the Phan Thiet area, as well as to provide general support to
the II Corps Tactical Zone. On 8 April, a two company
night assault was conducted in a suspected Viet Cong Headquarters
area and 221 troops were helilifted into the mountainous area
45 kilometers northeast of Phan Thiet utilizing 13 UH-1H and 6
UH-1C helicopters. A total of 44 CAs of platoon size or larger
units were conducted.
During the month (of May)
the Polecats performed 56 combat assaults of platoon size or larger
as the McLain AO was greatly expanded. The Tiger Sharks were
kept busy this month, as they met and routed the enemy on numerous
occasions. On 4 May the Polecats and Tiger Sharks teamed up to
extract a LRRP team in heavy contact with a large enemy force.
The valorous actions of the crew during the successful extraction
were praised by the ground personnel.
During the month (of May)
the 192nd AHC flew 2,375 hours, lifted 21,193 passengers and hauled
263 tons of cargo. The Tiger Sharks expended 478,900 rounds of
7.62 mm, 2,384 rounds of 2.75 rocket, 5,337 rounds of 40mm grenades
and sent a large number of enemy to their final resting place.
On 8 June the majority of
the company moved to Dalat in support of Operation Banjo Royce.
Numerous combat assaults were conducted on June 14. At 1730
hours a Tiger Shark light fire team was called in to support friendly
troops in contact with a company sized Viet Cong element. On
the 23 June the Polecats and Tiger Sharks returned to Phan Thiet
and proceeded to give the VC hell in their own back yard.
All gunships were centered
around the support of Task Force 3-506th Infantry and Task Force
South in the Phan Thiet area. In addition to this direct support
role the 192nd AHC provided general aviation support to DSA II
Corps, and IFFV Artillery. On 2 July the Tiger Sharks were scrambled
on three different occasions to suppress enemy sniper fire and
to search a suspected enemy base camp. A combat assault was
flown on 6 July in response to a VC ambush in which the Senior
Advisors of Song Mao were reported involved. On 8 July the Tiger
Sharks put in a strike on enemy personnel in support of a recon
patrol. On 11 July the 192nd AHC supplemented by four slicks
from the 92nd AHC and four CH-47s from the 243rd ASHC conducted
a series of combat assaults into an area north of Luong Song with
500 troops. The Tiger Sharks were scrambled on 17 July at 0905
hours to give fire support to the 2nd Battalion, 44th ARVN Regiment
who reported that they were in heavy contact with an estimated
battalion size enemy force. Results of the action were unknown
as the VC pulled their normal disappearing act.
In addition to the usual
one or two CAs a day, there was a marked increase in LRRP operations,
frequently necessitating night extractions. Nights in Phan Thiet
were active for other reasons as well. The airfield came under
mortar and rocket attacks on the 10th, 12th, 21st, and 23rd of
August. The attack, with 40mm mortar and rocket rounds during
the night of the 21st caused minor damage. On the 25th the Polecats
lifted two battalions in support of an offensive against a VC
stronghold west of the city. In spite of the inherent demands
of the increased actions, the 192nd AHC was able to improve its
aircraft availability to an above average as well as achieve a
commendable 70 days, over 6000 hours, without an accident.
Primarily the support for
the 3-506th Infantry was concerned with LRRP operations as no
major actions were realized. Sniffer missions (APD) were flown
frequently and were extremely successful. The IG team came and
went in with the unit turning in a fine effort. Over 90 days
and 8000 hours were realized without a major accident.
The month of October saw light action
in the unit's area of operation. On 11 October, elements from
the 3-506th and 4/44th ARVN were airlifted to secure a terrain
feature for a fire base. After completion of the FSB units of
the 3-506th were lifted into company size AOs. The 4/44th ARVN
was then lifted in to complete the joint US ARVN operation. 1,993
hours, 5,618 sorties, 2,833 tasks, and 14 medevacs were flown,
and 8,443 troops were lifted. Three unit aircraft sustained hits,
while one UH-1D and one UH-1H were lost. Operations were severely
limited from 27 to 31 October by fuel contamination found in some
of the aircraft.
The majority of the missions
were flown for Phan Thiet MACV, 5-27th Artillery, 44th Infantry
and the 53rd Regiment. On 21 November, an Eagle Flight of four
ships successfully inserted a B-36 element to secure a 7-17th
Cavalry LOH that had been shot down. The 192nd's fast reaction
time was instrumental in the success of the mission.
On December 4, the 192nd AHC moved a total of 1,362 US and
ARVN troops from the 44th and 3-506th by the Polecats.
The operation was north northwest of Song Mao. Insertions
were lifted in for two days. From that location the troops
were picked up and inserted into the mountains west of Song
Mao. On the 23rd of December 1,079 US and ARVN troops were
moved by slicks of the 192nd AHC to a new AO, where fire
base Andell was opened.
Equipment and Installations
Improvement of the company has continually been made in spite of
the heavy tactical commitments placed upon the 192nd Assault
Helicopter Company throughout the year. Upon their arrival at
Phan Thiet the 192nd AHC found a rugged wind blown area which
was to become their base camp. Bending to the tremendous task
awaiting them the 192nd quickly set up a temporary working and
living area consisting of tents. Defensive positions were
practically non-existent and the 192nd quickly set to work to
provide the necessary protection as the area was under almost
constant attack. At the end of the year 1968 the 192nd AHC can
boast of a very well defended area, and of permanent type
buildings which are almost complete. These achievements are a
credit to the many hours of hard work exerted by the men of
the 192nd Assault Helicopter Company.
The following awards were presented
to the men of the 192nd Assault Helicopter Company during the
Distinguished Flying Cross Cpt. FLOYD E. EDWARDS
Distinguished Flying Cross WO-1 RICHARD M. ARANN
Bronze Star Maj. BRUCE A. THOMAS
Bronze Star Cpt. KARL B. HILL
Bronze Star Cpt. HARRY E. JONES
Bronze Star Cpt. LARRY D. MARTIN
Bronze Star Sgt. DAVID A. STEWART
Additional awards were: one Soldiers
Medal, eight Army Commendation Medals, fifteen Purple Hearts,
and one hundred and eighty-one Air Medals.
To those men who made the supreme
sacrifice while fighting for the freedom of their country, we
dedicate this supplement of the Unit History.
CW2 DAVID W. TIMM 5 April
WO-1 MARK A. WENZEL 18 June
SP/5 THOMAS J. BRENNAN 18 June
All of the above text was written in 1968 and 1969. It was transcribed
to electronic form in September, 1998, by Bill Bauer. A few minor
spelling errors were corrected and the formatting has been modified slightly,
but it is as accurate as possible.
The webmaster expresses his gratitude to George Dille for his original
writings and Bill Bauer for all the work
that went into preserving our history.