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wow that's great. I couldn't believe it when I found and read your story. I never knew any of that. I didn't know much about when he was in the army, actually I think that's all I knew that he was in the army. He always told me he would tell me more about it "When I get older" haha. But yeah I'm actually at work right now and I don't have an e-mail account so I will have to set one up when I am at home. Thank you for responding to my message, and writing that story. I'm glad I read it!

Reading, PA USA - Friday, December 26, 2008 at 13:08:17 (PST)

I was one of the fist units in Kontum, 3rd bn, 18th fa, 8" and 175 artillery guns. I seen the air strip being built. We was there for about 3 weeks shooting fire missions, then we moved northward. seen a lot of action in viet nam, i was there two years. first time in 1st bn, 30th fa. great piece you have put together.

grant w vaughn <>
brazoria, texas usa - Wednesday, December 24, 2008 at 09:12:54 (PST)

Kelsey, feel free to e mail me and we can get in touch if you like. I flew with your dad almost every day after he joined our platoon and I owe him my life for the courage he showed the day we got shot down.


Dave Millard <>
Saratoga, NY USA - Sunday, December 21, 2008 at 15:20:21 (PST)

My dad is William Chlebowski, he was on the plane with Joe Eubanks I believe. He passed away when I was 17 and I happened to stumble across this now, 3 years later. It was interesting to read about all of this, I didn't know about a lot of it.

Reading, PA USa - Sunday, December 21, 2008 at 00:31:41 (PST)

The documentation for both Kontum battles and the seiges at Ben Het are extrodinary. I was a WO1 with the the 57th AHC, 10/68 to10/69. The 57th has to be one of the least recogonized units in the history of the US Army. Those of us who were there do remember the numerous awards never given to our fellow aviators.

john howard white <>
okc, ok - Tuesday, December 16, 2008 at 12:54:19 (PST)

I was at Pleiku from Aug 71 - Apr 72. I was there at the very beginning of the offensive. I found it interesting as to what happened after I left. I flew with B Troop 7/17 Cav. Call sign Pall Bearer 33.

Ken Darrow <>
Klamath Falls, Oregon US - Wednesday, December 10, 2008 at 16:51:21 (PST)

I am very interested in your site. I was a nurse at Pat Smiths' hospital in Kontum 1969/1970. I had to leave following a tough bout of fallcipirum malaria. I was determined to return but in early March 1972, the US Embassy in Singapore very strongly advised me not to travel to the highlands as the security situation was deteriorating. I was so distressed at the time. Now I understand why.

Anne Watts <>
London, United Kingdom - Friday, December 05, 2008 at 06:10:03 (PST)

So great web site! Historical

Rosa <>
Petersburg, Virginia US - Sunday, November 23, 2008 at 16:29:01 (PST)


Rosa <>
Petersburg, Virginia US - Sunday, November 23, 2008 at 16:27:35 (PST)

Great Site!!

Julissa Diaz <>
Ft. Lee, Virginia USA - Sunday, November 23, 2008 at 08:44:52 (PST)

Great indeed.thanks for the histories.

Owerri Egomug Abauwa

Owerri Egomug Abauwa <>
Cotonue, Cotonue Benin - Friday, November 21, 2008 at 01:53:20 (PST)

Thank you for this website.

Dr Green <>
- Monday, November 17, 2008 at 03:22:13 (PST)

Great site

Regina Ruiz <>
Ft. Lee, Va - Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 09:05:36 (PST)

great site

Priscella <>
Richmon, Va USA - Wednesday, November 12, 2008 at 07:24:21 (PST)

Great Site!

Noah Colcleaser <>
Chester, va usa - Monday, November 10, 2008 at 15:32:30 (PST)

Checking back in to update email address from 2002 when first found your site Jack. I was MACV, based from Kontum, TanCahn, Ploei Kleng and Ben Het with 22nd Infantry and 14th Armored Cav. Welcome home fellows.

Hugh J Preacher "Deacon" <>
Frisco, Texas USA - Sunday, November 09, 2008 at 10:06:49 (PST)

Subject: Bob "Lobo" Lobodzinski

I wanted to let you all know of the passing of my father, Bob "Lobo" Lobodzinski a helicopter pilot during the battle of Kontum. He died on Monday afternoon, after a week-long hospital stay due to a severe infection received during treatments for pain in his spine. As I understand it, today there is a tribute to him taking place at Ft. Rucker, from which we'll receive the flag, and he is to be buried on the 31st, at the Dallas-Ft. Worth National Cemetery with the usual honors.

Like the rest of you, I'm sure, he never talked much about his work overseas, but I know he was very excited to have heard from you and was looking forward to future reunions.

This means that it falls to you gentlemen just that much more to preserve the legacy that you have created. He will be missed.

Mark Lobodzinski

Mark Lobodzinski <>
- Wednesday, October 29, 2008 at 14:12:19 (PDT)

Flew with the 335th AHC "Cowboys" 68-70.
Great job on keeping this history on the books. Thanks for your contiuned service.

Andy Hookler <>
Sarasota, FL USA - Saturday, October 25, 2008 at 12:27:09 (PDT)

I would like to know if anybody knew my cousin that died at Kontum on November 20, 1967.

Thomas Joe Wade (Tommy)
173rd Airborne Brigade
Antlers Oklahoma
Died November 20, 1967 at Kontum

Cathy <>
Muskogee, OK Muskogee - Friday, October 17, 2008 at 09:52:29 (PDT)


CITY OF CENTER HILL, FL U.S.A. - Thursday, October 16, 2008 at 11:49:04 (PDT)

Thanks for a great site. I am listed on the roster for H Troop. Some names I had not thought about for years and some names I often think about. All were a great bunch of guys to fly with.

Joseph Cox <>
Athens, Tx. - Sunday, October 05, 2008 at 20:13:51 (PDT)

To Jack Heslin, one of my dearest American friends from the Vietnam War mainly in the heroic battle of Kontum in 1972 where the 23rd ARVN Division alone supported by the US Air Forces, US Army helicopters and advisors destroyed 3 NVA Communists divisions. Thank you Jack for telling the story of the Battle of Kontum on your web site and for the true remarks about me in your book “Reflections From the Web”.. I remember some American advisors were critical of Gen. Ba during the Battle of Kontum for not being aggressive enough, for not going out to attack the enemy. I think Gen. Ba knew his troops better than the Americans did and he played to the strength of his soldiers in letting them fight from defensive positions. Gen Ly Tong Ba, 23rd ARVN Div Commander, Battle of Kontum 1972

Gen Ly Tong Ba
Las Vegas, NV USA - Saturday, September 20, 2008 at 08:03:37 (PDT)

This is an outstanding overview of a crucial, yet largely forgotten battle of the Vietnam War. Kudos to Jack Heslin for his excellent work in researching, organizing and presenting this information. I learned a great deal.

Scott Swett
Webmaster: and
Author: To Set The Record Straight: How Swift Boat Veterans, POWs and the New Media Defeated John Kerry.

Scott Swett <>
Falls Church, Virginia USA - Wednesday, September 03, 2008 at 08:19:40 (PDT)


MEDFORD, OREGON USA - Saturday, August 30, 2008 at 12:55:19 (PDT)

AWESOME WEB SITE! Once again, this web site is a fantastic source for veterans who want to maintain contact with one another, learn about different aspects of the Armed Forces, and educate one self about your site information. We think so highly of this web site that we have added a link to our monthly newsletter so that more veterans are made aware of this invaluable resource. Also, please visit our web site in order to learn about benefits veterans are eligible for today. Learn how to increase service-connected compensations and VA pensions. Also, learn about the hundreds of FREE sources all veterans can take advantage of today. Again, Thanks For Your Great Web Site!

Rance Jurevwicz, Capt., USA, Ret <>
Highland, CA United States - Friday, August 29, 2008 at 07:34:51 (PDT)

Thank you, great site!

Randy Horner <>
- Monday, August 25, 2008 at 14:26:54 (PDT)

Great website, awesome! I was with the ALO/FAC's in Kontum City (Outlaw 28) in 68-69 serving as a radio operator. Col James Thomas, Elliot Ø1, was our CO. Thanks for all your efforts put forth to highlight The Battle of Kontum.

Steve Woodward <>
Port Angeles, WA USA - Thursday, August 21, 2008 at 09:02:04 (PDT)

I was a young WO serving with the 92nd AHC in Dong Ba Thin from July of 1971 to December of 1971. I was then transferred to the 57th AHC in December of 1971 and completed my tour with the 57th. I left Vietnam in July of 1972. It was very interesting to read all of the stories on the website because I lived through them every day as they happened. Everything was real to me because I was there! I still remember the day that Joe Eubanks died...he was my Platoon leader and I was only a few miles away when the incident took place and nothing that I could do. Both he and Bruce Delau had flown with me on a number of missions. Although Vietnam is only a memory these days, I will never forget it and remember fondly all of the officers and crew members that I flew with. I wish that everyone could have come home.... We were soldiers and we were young!

Bob Mason <>
New Freedom, PA USA - Thursday, June 26, 2008 at 10:57:35 (PDT)

Great site, very well done. Hope to add some "color" and perhaps a memory or two.

Air Cav!

Dan Hilliard <>
Yankeetown, Florida US of A - Sunday, June 22, 2008 at 08:38:17 (PDT)

Thanks for a great website. I was with the 57th AHC in Kontum from 4/69 thru 3/70 when we were reassigned to An Khe. Our mission was the support of the S.O.G, and operated in Cambodia and Laos, using Dak To as a launch pad. I was crew chief on Huey Slick and participated in the Battle of Ben Het.
What a flash of memories!!

- Wednesday, June 11, 2008 at 05:02:26 (PDT)

Great site!

Bob <>
- Tuesday, June 03, 2008 at 13:36:08 (PDT)

Thanks for this very fine, informative article. I flew into Kontum airfield on several occasions in 1969-70 and only remained on the ground for brief periods. It was a very isolated, desolate place then and I was always glad to be on my way back to Nha Trang. I'm a former Army aviator who was glad to serve but quite unhappy without the final outcome in Vietnam.

Lew Nibert <>
Laurel, Maryland USA - Saturday, May 24, 2008 at 19:12:17 (PDT)

We met on the plane and I had to take a look at the website. Amazing job! This is truly a powerful tool to help honor the fallen, comfort the grieving, and teach the uneducated. Thank you.

Brock Burkhardt <>
Ramstein, Germany - Thursday, May 08, 2008 at 03:21:22 (PDT)

I was a Cagey/Elliot FAC at Kontum Oct 66 to Mar 67. I am so pleased to find this site. I was trying to find some familiar terrain on Google Earth when I found your site quite by accident. It is really great!

LTC(Ret) Lee R. Goettsche, Jr. <>
Albuquerque, NM USA - Tuesday, April 22, 2008 at 16:34:42 (PDT)

Great Website. We really upgraded weapon systems in 1972 didn't we. I served from 1969 -1970 not in Vietnam. We could have won it in 1972 I believe after all that time. Just too much political pressure. Johnson was such a looser.

Bob Tiscione <>
Roseville, Ca. USA - Sunday, March 16, 2008 at 16:19:28 (PDT)

Great sight,I was at Tan Cahn,May 70 to Oct. 70. Climbed on the water tower you spoke of many times.Kontum, Oct.70 to Mar.71.Operated water point at the bridge on dak bla river, across from restraunt that had the ESSO gas sign.Praise our troops now.

Jerrell Herron <>
Tyler, Tx USA - Monday, March 03, 2008 at 16:24:45 (PST)

I flew with the 57th AHC(Gladiator 29) from Jun 71 - Jun 72. I was up the night the NVA first invaded and experienced the advanced waepons they introduced into the battlefield. I must say it changed how we flew!! Our FOB mission was also one that so little is know about and many brave men gave the ultimate sacrifice and received so little credit. But it was a mission that no one knew we were doing!! Cheers

Bob Stillwell <>
Jackson, Missouri - Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 08:57:55 (PST)

I was in Bco.3/12th 4th inf div. I can never forget the day 16 of us were surrounded on a bomb crater. Feb 1968 if someone sees this please respond.

Gene K. Boyer <>
Wyoming, MN USA - Monday, January 21, 2008 at 17:06:33 (PST)

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