Houston Mini

Houston, Texas

November 2002

Dave Keel (68-69), Ken Dies (69-70), Walker Jones (70-71), John Mackle (69-70).

After Action Report

Recently, I had the honor of sitting at a downtown Houston Holiday Inn lounge for nearly 5 hours talking with David Keel Ken Dies and John Mackel.

Had a great time changing subjects in the middle of subjects. Always happens when folks get together who's tours overlapped as their's did (mine just followed Dies' and Mackel's). Dies brought a photo album and we tried to ID some of the guys, but Dies was the subject of most of them :-) Some I remember (from others' pictures, mainly) included.

As I was interested in historical events, I learned David Keel was with C Troop when it moved south to Phouc Vinh. He mentioned that the Troop was the last Troop to move. Other info passed:

The Squadron transitioned from OH-13s to OH-6As in October '68 (which must have been just before the Squadron moved south). C Troop also flew White Teams in OH-6s before '70, apparently during perceived threats of SAMs to Cobras. Loaches had mini-guns but weren't liked. Never knew this stuff! Never liked mini-gun Loaches and White Teams, either. Pat Stewart was High Bird when CPT Hood was killed on 12/12/69. The .51 cal also hit Observer Kenny Bell; Gunner was Larry Krause (this was my own info). I have Krause but not Bell. Anyone help?

Pat Stewart was High Bird and fired some rockets, which started several days of deep shit.Porter was Cavalier White when he got it 06/02/69 near Xuan Loc after circling across a river over and over. Mackel and Burns were flying there also in B Models. Porter's bird "blew up when it hit a tree". His wife had just had a baby. Anybody in touch with her? Someone from the grunt Cav Co. that day has mentioned the valor of Porter that day on a Wall site. I have not found it yet.

Squadron CO, Tolson asked David Keel (then S-3) why Porter was killed. Hansen was killed 2 weeks later. Everyone acknowledges that he was hit between the eyes after killing a gook, and landing to pick up "stuff". True? His gunner might have been Harmon, whose brother was Cavalier White when I came in Troop in late April, 1970. Anyone know anything more? Ken Dies was sitting Left Seat with Silva when they were shot down by a .51 cal. Silva got a round in the shoulder.

Regarding the most infamous event in C Troop history - the Mid-Air of 7/14/69, H/75th CO Pacerrelli rappelled with his troops that night, himself.

-Walker Jones