Saber Article Index

2001 Nov-Dec

MEDEVAC 15th Med\15th FSB
Mike Bodnar
307B N Main Copperas Cove, TX 76522
1704 254-542-1961

A correction to the last column is that the captions for both photos should have been under the photo on the left side with everyone seated at the table. The photo on the right should have noted that the figure standing was "Doc" MCNANEY who was the M.C. of the 54th Annual 1st Cav Assn. Reunion Vietnam Veterans' Luncheon.

Terry HEININGER FLAMINGOBOOKS@BLAZENT.NET from PA comments: "To The Current Members Of The First Cavalry Division: War with the terrorists that committed the cowardly atrocities against our citizens inside our very borders in New York City, Washington, and Pennsylvania this week looks like it will become a reality. The 1st Cav Division, being one of the premier and elite units of the U.S. Army will probably be called to active duty sometime in the very near future. Please remember who you are, where you're from and our division's glorious past when you go forward to seek retribution from these cowardly killers and renegades. You're fighting an enemy who has brought death and destruction to our very doorstep. Gary Owen....Kick Some Butt! Terry HEININGER..Former medic and member of HQ/HHC, 15th Medical Battalion and 1st Squadron, 9th Cavalry, RVN '69."

I cannot say that I agree with that common assessment that the terrorists who did that were cowardly, so I will mention it for the others who are somewhat in awe of those terrorists' cunning perseverance. One has to be a brave idiot to commit that kind of suicidal plan, or really duped to think that they will profit from it in some next life.

Samuel H. ARMES ARMES71@AOL.COM from Clinton, TN, also wrote in the 1st Cav. Assn. Guestbook: "I'm glad I found this site, I think it's great. Keep up the good work. I served with the First Cav Division from May '63-June '64. I was assigned to Co. C, 15th MED Bn. I had been in the company about two months when they formed D Company and I was transferred to that company as Motor Sgt. until Sgt. Napier arrived. I would like to locate a James (Jim) ADAMS from PA. We were good friends. My tour of duty in Korea with the First Cav Div. wasn't an easy one, I didn't really have a decent meal till cold weather set in, GET IT? Korea was truly a Hardship Tour of duty. We were always on alert, never a peaceful day, always something going on. "I was on guard duty the day President KENNEDY, was shot. I was commander of the relief and I was checking the guards on the walking post when the MPs at the gate alerted me. It was appox: 0450 hrs. At that time I alerted the men to the fact and told them to keep on their toes. It was really a sad thing to get such bad news and be so far from home. I will never forget that day, it seems like only yesterday. Hope I haven't bored anyone with my little story."

I found the following post on the 11th A.C.R. Web site Guestbook: <HTTP: wgb /wgbview.dbm?own er=acvvc> that I pasted onto the 1st Cav Assn. Guestbook for those readers to see. For all who missed it, here it is again, foreign spelling and all: "Friday 09/14/2001 8:09:22pm Name: Mats ARHOV E-Mail: <MATSARHOV@SWIPNET.SE>Location: Sweden Comments: I regret that I have to write to you in a time like this. No actually I don't regret it at all, because when should I not? I can say that, I have never been pro US in my life, because I have seen the damage The War machine have caused in other places and in an other time. As an old warrior myself I have no words for this mass murder. I've seen people die and I've seen people come through. This is not a fight, this is not even the keeni meeni stuff I'm done in the past. This is mass murder never than less. For what it's for you, today I'm American and all for it, as well. If anyone need me to hunt the bastards down, give me a ring and I be there. I know that nothing can compensate you for your loss but know this; for three minutes today, Sweden stood still. It was a strange feeling, of loss or anger of sadnes and most of all of sorrow. For an old warhorse like me it was terrible. I've seen a few of my friends go down and I've buried some of them. The City stood still. People stopped walking and talking. They where there for a minute or three. A powerful moment. You have my heart and my respect in this troubled time of yours. If I, an old hunter/destroy unit commander can do anything to help you in any way, please let me know. My deepest thoughts and my heart for your people that died and for the ones who have to live, I think of you tonight. Respectfully Mats ARHOV"

In response to that I received e-mail from Ron STRUB KRISTYGIRLS@AOL.COM who said, "Hi Mike - good article from the dude in Sweden. I feel like I know you. Keep up the good work. Ron STRUB - Company C, 15th MED - part of the advance party with C\15th MED that left Fort Benning in Aug '65 to An Khe. Hope to meet you some day. Thanks again - Ron"

Bob KON KON@PILOT.MSU.EDU e-mailed: "Mike, B, 1/7 Cav has a roster Web site which I administer <HTTP: kon user>and a photo site <HTTP:>administered by Bob BRANDIN. I have had only modest luck in finding our medics for the period '65-'72 and wonder if there is a source somewhere that details where medics were assigned from the 15th Med. Once we have names, we can try to locate them. I have forwarded your URL to a couple of Medics already registered. If you have any advice to offer, it will be appreciated. As long as it takes"

I had to reiterate to Bob like I have said to others who think that 15th MED had control of division Medics and assigned them to line units. The Medics, like any M.O.S., were allocated by division from the In Country Training Center, or intra-division, accordingly.

For example, I was originally put in a rear unit in Long Binh when I first arrived in Vietnam in Dec '68. I put in a 1049 transfer to the 1st Cav, where the vast majority of the casualties were coming into the 93rd Evac from that we off loaded from the aeromedical evacuation helicopters. It took two months for the transfer to go through, partly because that unit's first sergeant told me that he had round filed it because he said, "You don't want to go to the field, it's bad," so I had to put in another one which took up the second month. I then went to An Khe in Feb '69 for the 1st Cav in country training where that was still being done even though the 1st Cav had moved to III Corps. They then assigned me to 2\20 A.R.A. in Phouc Vinh which was also a rear job and I immediately told them that I wanted to go to the field. After about a month they switched me with a Medic who had been out in the field six months or so and I went to the battalion that was in for palace guard which happened to be 2\7 Cav. I never had anything to do with 15th MED until I extended my tour to fly on MEDEVAC; end of story. I tried to refer Bob to the National Archives and to Peter COLE of D 2\7 Cav '69-'70 for his research because Peter has extensively researched D 2\7 and in the process 2\7 Cav which passed along valuable information to me and others. Peter primarily used the National Archives but he also tells me that for personnel rosters a good place to check is: National Personnel Records Center, Military Personnel Records 9700 Page Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63132-5100.

I would think that the 1st Cav's 15th ADMIN made all of the personnel assignments. There can only be so many places in this country to check and if you are interested and honestly exhaust those places then you should find what you are looking for if it exists. Ask them everything and keep trying. Don't forget, they are government workers.

Jim BRIGHAM, V.P of the 7th Cav, sent over signs of life for Bill WALSH, my successor in C 2\7 Cav and MEDEVAC in '69-'70, who had posted somewhere: "Bill 'Doc Holliday' WALSH C 2\7 and MEDEVAC '218' serving beautiful Song Be and all points south!" The 1st Cav Assn. office says that he is still considered an active member but that he does not receive the Saber so any address for him, except e-mail, that they have, should be good.

I forgot to mention in the last column that Bill is also one of the Medics who had earned a Combat Medic's Badge for humping in the infantry as well as the silver wings of the Aircraft Crewman's Badge for flying on MEDEVAC-SO THAT OTHERS MAY LIVE.

Jim also wanted to confirm what unit of the 7th Cav that MEDEVAC Medic Jim HALL was in whom I had noted as recently deceased. The 1st Cav Assn. office lists that he gave 1\7 Cav in '65. If anyone can confirm what unit of the 7th Cav Jim HALL was in, if he was your "DOC," or served with you in any unit, please contact me or Jim BRIGHAM JBRIGH6566@JUNO.COM . The more we know the better. If you have anecdotal stories about Jim HALL you can format it that way and it will get printed in this column if you send it to me.

Always remembering our 1st Cav troops on duty around the world; over and out.

Mike Bodnar C 2\7 '69
MEDEVAC 1-7\70

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