Casper aviation platoon Casper Platoon Story

VC Run Far, Fast, But Make No Gain

This site was last updated: 2/15/15


Reprinted from: Fire Base 173 Newspaper


BONG SON, RVN - "Sometimes," said one paratrooper quite seriously, "This war looks like a game of keystone cops, only nobody's laughing and the losers don't get to play again."

The rifleman with the 2nd Battalion was reflecting on an action his platoon had just finished along South Vietnam's north central coast near Bong Son.

Alpha Company, 2nd Battalion, 503d Infantry had been pushing through some low, sloping hills looking for Viet Cong hideaways when a four-man VC ambush team fired on the 3rd platoon.

Reacting well, the Sky Soldiers quickly routed the Viet Cong from their well-concealed position and the enemy took off running.

What they didn't know, however, was that they were headed directly toward the 1st platoon, which was located some 500 meters away.

"We got the word they might be heading in our direction," said Sergeant William A. Furan of Marshal, Minn., "and a second later, we saw them coming over a crest of a hill, running to beat all hell."

The paratroopers readied, but in the nick of time, a woman in the area signaled to the VC that the Americans were waiting for them.

Turning their heals, the VC took off in another direction, but to no avail.

A bubble-topped LOH (Light Observation Helicopter) caught them in a stream bed, and with two mini-guns, killed two.

Footnote - The Casper Crew Chiefs in this story were SP5 Richard Canning & Michael Nuckols. The Pilots are unknown.