Ripcord Association

Day by Day Report
April 21 – 30, 1970

by Lee Widjeskog

April 21, 1970

0220:  A 2/501 in the vicinity of Re-Up Hill, responded to trip flares with M79 and claymores.  The NVA hit back with RPG, satchel charges and small arms.  Three US were WIA.  Blood trails left the area.

1125:  3Bravo 1/501 just north of FSB Jack, was ambushed with two wounded.  Medic, Kerry Vance, attempted to treat one and was killed as he moved forward.  Later booby traps were encountered and two more were wounded.

1300:  Sensors were emplace at closed FSB Gladiator to detect NVA presence. 

1405:  at 477134, 3Charlie 1/506 note NVA to their rear and engaged them leaving One GI WIA.

1700:  B 2/506 returned to field at 369214 and began patrolling.

1700:  Recon 1/506 engaged NVA at 445142 killing one NVA.

1710:  Delta 2/506 completed a one ship LZ at 345182.

1824:  1Bravo 1/501 hit a booby trap that wounded one man at 4283165.

Unit locations:  1/506 no change, 2/506 Bravo 367 216, Alpha 362194, Recon 340173 2/501 No change, 1/501 no change.  Artillery unchanged.

April 22, 1970

1205:  at 477134, 3Charlie 1/506 found the body of a NVA soldier killed by small arms fire the day before.

1235:  at 475135 3Charlie 1/506 fired LAWs and later found a fresh body.  No injuries.

1300: at 367163, 1&2Charlie 2/501 engaged NVA who then fled.  Inspection showed one dead NVA and a blood trail.

1311:  near Re-Up Hill, Alpha 2/501 was hit by 50 mortar round but since they were moving at the time, no one was injured.

1325:  Bravo 2/506 at 343179, found four bunkers with house hold utensils and some medical supplies.  Most was destroyed on site.

1407:  at 388162, 3Charlie 2/501 detonated a booby trap while pursuing a NVA soldier.  One man was wounded.

1430:  Alpha 2/501 while moving from the booby trap area, encountered bunkers and NVA.  They employed ARA and artillery and linked up with Charlie 2/501.  The bunkers were over run and one NVA was found.  Numerous blood trails left the area.

1440:  ARA over the 2/501 action received small arms fire and took a crew member to Granite for treatment and evacuation.

1745:  2Delta 2/506 found 5 bunkers at 343178.  CS powder was dispersed in the structures.

1/506 remained in the Rao Trang area.  2/506 remained around Ripcord.  1/501 continued to patrol around Jack and Evans.  2/501 stayed south of Ripcord between 902 and Re-up Hill.

April 23, 1970

0335:  Alpha 2/501 at 362165 was hit with satchel charges.  Contact broke at 0412 with one US KIA and two WIA.  PFC Gary Worley died of multiple fragments.

0611:  Alpha 2/501 received satchel charges, mortar and RPG fire while on their NDP.  Fire was returned and artillery employed on NVA locations.  A sweep of the area found a variety of weapons and ammo as well as 7 NVA.  Nine US soldiers were WIA from the action.

1228:  At 382157, the Recon Platoon of E1/506 was ambushed as SP4 Nicks led the unit.  Firing from a bunker, three men were hit as the NVA fled the site.  Benjamin Nicks died on route to the hospital.

1350:  From the previous location, Recon saw 13 NVA at 30 meters and engaged them with small arms fire.  A sweep of the area found a 60 mm mortar unit which was sent to Camp Evans.

1450:  Recon 2/501 at the same location was engaged with small arms and RPG.  After a half hour the enemy fled and 3 US were WIA.  While moving to a LZ at 382162, Recon was engaged with small arms.  ARA and artillery were employed and a sweep at 1715 revealed 1 NVA dead and 2 GIs WIA.

Throughout the day CH-47 loads came to Ripcord.

Units remained in their areas of operation.

April 24, 1970

Each day pre-planned air strikes are slated for the area surrounding Ripcord and other fire bases.   Additional strikes are called in as the enemy is found.

Delta 2/506 is rotating platoons onto Ripcord for one day chance to clean up.

0035:  Alpha and Charlie 2/501 near 368165, were engaged by NVA with satchel charges.  They responded with claymores and hand grenades.  First light revealed no results and I US WIA.

0040:  1Charlie 1/506, at 476133, lost a man when he heard a noise.   Sgt. Ernest English threw a grenade but it bounced back off vegetation and killed him. He was part of a 6 man team

1726:  2Delta 2/506 found and destroyed a 500 pound bomb.

1800:  Team B of Recon 2/506 found 20 bunkers and sections of copper wire with insulators along a trail at 342169.  This trail runs from Hill 902 to “Re-up Hill”.  The bunkers had been destroyed by artillery.

1800:  Team D, Recon 2/506 found an unused 2 foot wide high speed trail at 334168.

1800:  Team E, Recon 2/506 at 338170 also found wire, but no insulators.

Units remained in their areas as did artillery.

April 25, 1970

1040:  3Alpha 2/506 completed a one ship LZ at 358191.

1200: At 435124, 2Bravo 1/506 engaged 3 NVA.  A sweep of the area revealed bunkers, AA positions and mortar rounds.  All were destroyed in place.

1210:  3Charlie 1/506 found a dead NVA laying on the ground at 473137 who died 3 to 4 days prior.

1305:  3Charlie 1/506 found a grave of a NVA one to two days old at 477134.

1440: Team B Recon 2/506, near Hill 902 found a recently used high speed trail.

1448: 2 Bravo 1/506 moving at 438124 were hit by NVA with small arms fire.  Further contact was made at 1510 when hit by a squad from bunkers.  Organic arms and artillery employed.  Contact broke at 1530.  Results were 2 NVA KIA and US casualties of four WIA and deaths of Ronald Cline, Boyd Magee and Billy Sebastion died out right and Eudell Kotrous who died on the 26th.

No major unit movement.

April 26, 1970

Weather a problem for flights.

0555:  A satchel charge was thrown into the Ripcord perimeter and bounced off a soldier’s helmet.  Response was grenades and claymores.  Not injuries.  A sweep produced no results.

0635:  2Alpha 1/506 engaged NVA at 5 meters and killed the same.

0930:  Command Post 1/1st Regiment ARVN command detonated a booby trap at 281188 killing 2 NVA and capturing 20 blocks of explosives.

1325:  1Bravo 2/506 cut a one ship LZ at 365208.

1530:  2Delta 2/501 engaged 5 NVA at 369154 resulting in 4 NVA killed and the capture of rice and equipment.

2000:  1 Delta 2/506 reported possible headlights at 355165.  175mm artillery employed on the location.  No results.

No unit moves.

April 27, 1970

Weather a factor.

0430:  Ripcord received 2 incoming white phosphorus rounds from the north.  One was determined to be a 105mm round.

1015:  1Bravo 1/506 was engaged by NVA 1 klick east of FSB Maureen.  The NVA fled and 1 US WIA.

1310:  3Bravo 2/506 completed a LZ at 371202.

1345: 3Bravo 1/506 found and destroyed two bunkers at 438129.

1540:  1Delta 2/501 engaged and captured one NVA after he was wounded at 366155 south east of Ripcord.

1630:  1Bravo 2/506 completed a

April 28, 1970

Weather continued to be poor.  Many pre-planned flights and air strikes were delayed or cancelled.

1125:  Recon 1/506 at 435160, found a month old NVA body killed by artillery along with assorted personal equipment and weapons.

1430:  ARVNs at 296187, north of Ripcord, engaged NVA.  Results were 2 ARVN KIA and 16 WIA.

During this day Raymond Susi, E2/506 died of injuries sustained from flying debris associated with a helicopter on Ripcord.  Date of the incident is not certain.

Units unmoved.

April 29, 1970

0800:  2Charlie 2/501 found a cache at 364164 containing rice, ammo, mortar rounds, etc. and three buried NVA bodies killed 3 to 4 days prior.  While there, the unit received 6 mortar rounds to no affect.

1000:  Tactical aircraft fired on a mortar position killing 2 NVA near 351150.

1005:  1Alpha 2/506 found a NVA rucksack about a week old at 376189.

1100:  Aircraft destroyed three bunkers and killed 2 NVA at 352152.

1139:  During a planned explosion on Ripcord, a member of C2/506 was hit in the head with debris and medevacked out.

1230:  A white team helicopter carrying Edgar Brenner and Jeffery Klaves, was hit by 12.7mm machinegun fire and burst into flames as they crashed into a stream bed.  D2/501 moved to recover the men and took RPG and small arms fire.  By the time the bodies were extracted 4 NVA were dead and 1 NVA WIA captured.

1400:  2Alpha 2/506 completed a LZ at 372198.

1405:  At 272278, 4/1st Regiment ARVN took fire from a NVA squad.  They returned fire but still ended up with 3 WIA.

1610:  2Charlie 2/501 while at 364164 (near Re-up Hill), received 21 mortar round while cutting a LZ.  This led to 2 WIA.

2140:  2Alpha 2/501 at FSB Granite was attacked from three sides by a NVA force using small arms, grenades, RPG and mortars.  Contact was broken at 2345.  Fighting continued off and on through the night.  This was followed by more mortars and another assault on the 30th at 0730. This led to the deaths of Robert Boggs, Dennis Hunter, Carl Patten, Ray Snyder, Leonard Walker, and J. McGuire.  Edward Bishop is MIA and later declared dead.  Seven others were wounded and 1 NVA body found.

April 30, 1970

0645:  2Delta 2/501 engaged and killed one NVA.  The others fled.  3 US WIA at 360155.

0655:  1Bravo 1/506 near FSB Maureen was engaged by NVA.  This left 3 WIA.  Bravo Troop 2/17 Cav. Came to assist the 1/506 near the Rao Trang and made a strafing run at the NVA.  While doing so they were hit with an RPG and burst into flames in a fiery crash. Killed were Davis Staton, Capt. John Sensing and Robert Masseth.  Their bodies were retrieved a few days later.

0730:  As daylight increased, the NVA reasserted their assault on FSB Granite using RPG from the south and west leaving 18 WIA. A sweep of the area produced 17 NVA KIA and one NVA POW.  At 1327 hours they received mortar rounds leaving 8 more WIA.  An hour later they got 20 more mortar rounds.  Finally at 1830 when a Chinook landed they received 1 more WIA.  During the course of the day 2 men were killed, Robert Shannon (A2/501) and Larry Jones (E2/501)

1140:  5 klicks North West of FSB Bradley, 1/1 ARVN were hit with mortars and RPG.  6 KIA & 22 WIA.  14 NVA killed.

1200:  2Delta 2/501 received fire from NVA at 366165. 2 WIA.

1230:  At 398148, Recon 2/501 were engaged by NVA.  Return fire caused them to flee.  3 WIA.

1328:  One mortar round hit near the 105s on Ripcord.

1351: 5 mortar rounds hit Ripcord.

1410:  Bravo 2/501 while conducting a sweep around FSB Granite, found 2 dead NVA.

1755:  at 375194, 2Alpha 2/506 found 2 bunkers and assorted RPG equipment.  To be destroyed the next day.

During the action that day, a door gunner (PFC William Meister) with 101 Aviation was killed by small arms fire as his chopper aided the troops in need.  The helicopter did not go down.

Unit locations:

      1/506 Rakkasan & the Rao Trang 

      2/506 Ripcord and the nearby hills.

      1/501 FSB Jack & Rocket Ridge,

      2/501 Granite & Coc A Bo. 


      A2/319 –Rakkasan,

      B2/319 Ripcord,

      C2/319 Granite,

      C 4/77 Evans,

      A1/39 Evans,

      B 1/39 Nancy,

      A2/11 Granite,

      A 2/94 Barbara,

      C-34 O’Reilly,

      C-11 Ripcord. 

      E2/506 now had 6 mortar squads on Ripcord.

        May 1 – 10 (Not Recorded Yet)                               Calander