Alpha Co 4/12 199th Light Infantry Brigade (Separate)
Tour of Duty 1969 - 1970
REDCATCHERS

 

James Crane, RTO for 1st Platoon Alpha Co. 4/12, Area of Operations (AOP) 3rd and 4th Corp, Swamps, Paddies, Highlands, Jungles and Cambodia. Range from the Pineapples, Plain of Reeds, The Bobo Canal, Three Rivers, North of Dinh Quan.

Jim moved up through the ranks from Squad  to Company level RTO. Jim came into the battle zone at at the Binh Ding Bridge south of Saigon.

 

James Crane on a mid-day break or end of day perusing the North Vietnamese Army (NVA) hardcores in the jungles, this means chow time, also a chance to clear out your bowels, check your weapons, blow the breeze.

Notice the palm foliage, there is one palm that will grab your backpack(see the leaves over his head) and you have a heck of a time untangling, or getting your flesh ripped up.

 

Jungle bunker complex, thee bunkerss are always built under shaded areas, usually in triple Canopy areas or where the trees/foliage could be pulled together, notice small entrance to the right, and use of bamboos, that is used to filter out smoke while cooking.

 

Alva, First Platoon Alpha 4/12. I can't recall his first name, he said he was from Mexico but he joined the Military in California.

Alva had a keen interest in electronics, also he was very good at calling in artillery support.

I had to Medically Evacuated (Med Evac) by Helicopter, him and a number of other Troops when we were attacked by wild bees in the jungle, he was swelling at a very fast rate, the big fear on my part was him having an heart attack.

        

Doc Sam (Myself) and Alpha 4/12 First Platoon Warriors on Armored Personal Carrier (APC) in the jungles, this appears to be a break, as can be seen by the relax atmosphere.

I am leaning on the M-60 machine gun protection shield.

 

Chinook, transporting Troops at a jungle FSB, this chopper can carry a Platoon size with full gears.

Chinooks carried a M60 on each side at the front side windows.

 

Bunker made out of old ammo boxes.

 

Big Harris, Alpha Company 4/12, 1st Platoon, Machine Gunner from Corpus Christie, Texas, he took over the M60 duties from Charles White.

 

155MM Howitzer, this looks like Fire Support Base (FSB) Joy, northeast of FSB Nancy.

 

When riding on a APC or Tank in the jungle, you are constantly checking to see if the NVA is going to jump out on the trial and pop a Rocket Propel Grenade (RPG).

We observe the tree canopies for Snipers or Snakes.

 

Whenever we were strung out as such, the Co could be a Click (One thousand meters) long.

 

Whenever we were rolling with the Tanks, we never had to worry about hacking down the jungle to create Landing Zone (LZ) for resupply or extractions.

They would knock over trees, crush the underbrush and pile them up for fortification, and create a huge LZ.

 

Tanks sure beats humping the jungles, can create a big impression.

Their is even a Tank that can lay a bridge across a stream for other Tanks to cross on.

 

Sikorsky Sky crane, with a Duce & quarter vehicle strap below, it will also carry a fully loaded container.

 

Alpha Co Sergeant and Squad Leader in jungle.

He has a pack of cigarette and a bottle of mosquito repellant on his steel pot, on his left side is his Red lens flash light to read maps at night.

 

James Crane taking break in jungle, for him to be shirtless usually means we got to where the nightly ambush will be conducted.

 

 
A moment of reflection for James Crane in this pose.

 

James Crane saddle up moving through the jungle, RTO men had to hump (carry) extra batteries and an assortment of smoke grenades.

 

Greg "Sam" Toven and Big Harris moving through the jungles.

 

Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) Soldiers on patrol, passing through the highland village.

Probably from the 18th Division out of Xuan Loc.

 

Village in background, away from FSB.

 

Kipley with a plate of chow(food) at rubber plantation.

 

 

James Crane donated all these Photos - I am very very grateful, especially since that I am shown in Combat footages, and my memory is still there, to make comments.

Please do not abuse James Crane's recording of our Vietnam Tour of Duty history, please share.

               

Created 8/11/2012                                                                              Previous

Modified 01/10/2013