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Thank you for visiting The Battle of Kontum. And please feel free to add a comment to the Guestbook.


Thanks for all you are doing to help market my book “KONTUM: The Battle To Save South Vietnam”.

Here is a link to the online flyer for my book which is almost exactly what is on the dust jacket:
View Online Flyer

Those interested in purchasing the book online can visit the website:
Buy at

Jack, I really appreciate all you have already done to promote this book.

By the way Jack, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF) has issued a call for photos to obtain a photo to match with every one of the 58,272 names on the Wall on our National Mall. Now they have also launched a fund drive to raise the money they need to build an Education Center near the Wall. For more information check out this link.

Tom McKenna - Senior Adviser to 44th ARVN Regiment during the Battle of Kontum

Tom McKenna <>
Vermont USA - Friday, August 19, 2011 at 16:16:46 (EDT)

very interesting indeed. A happy new year.

broker <>
London, Essex Uk - Wednesday, December 28, 2011 at 10:54:28 (EST)

Very interesting

Dwight Smith <>
Fort lee, VA US - Saturday, December 17, 2011 at 17:33:56 (EST)

just stopping by

Terri Long <>
Fort Lee, Virginia Prince George - Monday, December 12, 2011 at 18:22:16 (EST)

Just recently retired and it is an interesting book.

Leon Porter <>
Chester, virginia united states. - Monday, December 12, 2011 at 17:07:46 (EST)

This is very interesting

Nicholas Surley
- Monday, December 12, 2011 at 15:30:13 (EST)

Great Experience

William taylor <>
Hopewell, Va - Monday, December 12, 2011 at 13:30:19 (EST)

Your information was very interesting.

- Monday, December 12, 2011 at 10:13:49 (EST)

I enjoyed reading The Battle of Kontum

Calvin Cropper <>
Hopewell, VA USA - Monday, December 12, 2011 at 07:30:41 (EST)

Informative, thanks for the information.

Dennis Hawkins <>
Chester, VA USA - Sunday, December 11, 2011 at 20:01:54 (EST)

class assignment

Graham Cracken <>
Ft Lee, VA - Sunday, December 11, 2011 at 17:58:31 (EST)

very interesting

Angela Ruede
- Sunday, December 11, 2011 at 14:10:51 (EST)

I am recently retired from the US Army after 22 years of service, and this is a great site that tells an extraordinary story. There are so many times where the small battles are forgotten, but are just as important as the news worthy ones. Thank you so much for recognizing the brave Soldiers.

Chris Hodges <>
Petersburg, VA United States - Sunday, December 11, 2011 at 00:10:23 (EST)

was with 1St Cav. Co D 2 BN 8th Cav with jeep mounted TOWs at Kontum in May - June '72

Rihard S. David <>
Winslow , Arizona USA - Friday, December 09, 2011 at 16:06:00 (EST)

Class assignment

Chester <>
Ft. Lee, VA US - Thursday, December 08, 2011 at 15:15:43 (EST)

Thanks for setting up this. Its very informative.

Carole <>
Los Angeles, CA USA - Tuesday, November 29, 2011 at 22:18:19 (EST)

So good to see accounts from others who were there and remember. God Bless.

Frank Ruane <>
Buford, Georgia USA - Tuesday, November 22, 2011 at 19:09:36 (EST)

Did anyone know Harold "Andy" Kram Jr.? Andy is my father-in-law's brother. He was killed 02/05/1968 in Kontum Province, South Vietnam. Here is his military data:

Nicholas Stroot <>
St. Louis, Missouri USA - Tuesday, November 15, 2011 at 16:35:24 (EST)

Thank you for providing some interesting information on the topic

Bob Heral < >
Benjo, bajone bow - Sunday, November 06, 2011 at 23:52:45 (EST)

Retired now and older.was in D/co 20th combat eng 1968 in Kontum.during Tet.any body still out there from that time??thank you john

john wick <>
colorado springs, colorado usa - Friday, October 07, 2011 at 09:39:35 (EDT)

Re: comment on Sept 30 by Mitchell. Thanks for your work with the anti tank missiles! You helped save a lot of us in a very hard situation! I was there as the Kontum province S-2 Advisor from Jan 72 to Jan 73!

Best regards, friend!

Richard Montgomery
LTC, US Army, ret.

Richard L. Montgomery <>
- Tuesday, October 04, 2011 at 19:58:54 (EDT)

I was with the 1st Cavalry division and i was in Kontum 1972. We where signed with the tow missals. That where mounted on the back of jeeps, we had to guard Kontum pass to keep from tanks coming crossing the bridge. Was any one there at the same time??

Mitchell <Smith Sr.>
Brethren , MI Manistee County - Friday, September 30, 2011 at 16:19:36 (EDT)

Great site. I was in 361st until it stood down and then serve with you in 17th CAG Ops until my deros. Do you still look like your site photo?

Bob Gamber <>
Wichita Falls, TX USA - Friday, September 30, 2011 at 14:15:54 (EDT)

From the Stars & Stripes link, I searched for an article that was written about my 8th Aerial Port Sq. Mobility team at Kontum.
The article is titled "Youngsters Look Up To The Big Old Sarge" (which to be honest is as inaccurate as could be), dated April 27, 1972. That was "my" MOB TEAM.

cary louderback
- Monday, September 19, 2011 at 14:39:25 (EDT)

As the last Advisor to leave Tan Canh, I enjoyed your web site. I was too busy in country to make many notes and cannot add too much to your site. I was the Senior Advisor to the Regt Commander of the 42nd Regt. We had only one Bn at Tan Canh and one at FSB 5 and one at FSB 6. Then 22nd Div Hq was in Quin Non and moved to our area only a couple of days prior to our battle. Enjoyed your site.

Ray Dobbins <>
- Sunday, September 11, 2011 at 18:10:09 (EDT)

I was a member of one of the 8th Aerial Port Sq. Mobility teams rotating in & out of Kontum during April, May & June of 1972. I was on a different team than Steve "Big Willie" Williams. We worked uploading C130s mostly, but anything that flew in/out of Kontum that needed our support by manpower or Adverse Terrain forklift got our help. I'd love to hear from the aircrews that were on the C130 that clipped the left wing on the Cobra and/or the one that later flew that bird out. Would also like to hear from the aircrew on the C130 that tore off that section of metal roof and the crew that was on the C130 that took my team out of Kontum just before expected overrun, where we kept losing engines on the way back to TSN. Yes, the USAF 60551s, and at times the Combat Controllers too, were on the ground at Kontum (just like most places C130s came & went). Kontum was a BAD PLACE ! Very bad. But then, anyone that was at Kontum in 1972 already knows that.

Cary Louderback <>
Rising Sun, IN - Monday, August 29, 2011 at 18:22:08 (EDT)

Jack, just to add to info, I was with 8th APSq Mobility team. We had teams alternating time spent in Kontum. Our job was to unload aircraft when we were re-supplying ammo, food, etc. for combat support during the Easter offensive. I know not too many people knew Air Force personel were on the ground there, however, I would like to personally thank all Huey crews. We were getting hit hard on the air strip one day, and they hit the ammo a C-130 had just unloaded. We were getting hit from everywhere. I was in a bunker close to the terminal, and all the exploding ammo. I left the bunker to find a safer place for us guys. I slid in a fox hole, there were 2 cobra pilots that were waiting to be picked up. They told me it wasn't good to be on the ground at this time. They were surprised to see American Air Force personel there. The Huey came in, heard my story about the air force being there. They brought another Huey in right behind us to get the rest of us which nobody knew about. Thank You all.

Steve (big willie) Williams <>
Corona, CA USA - Sunday, August 28, 2011 at 20:20:16 (EDT)

Amazing time capsule! I was on the province advisory team 41 as the phung hoang advisor and deputy S2 advisor. Knew Col Bachinski well, and agree with author Mckenna's assessment of him. Flew as the province observer nearly every day from Jan 72 to Jan 73. Dr. Pat Smith saved my life when I went into anaphlactic shock after eating fried grasshoppers! Was on the chopper when Col Brownlee disappeared, and we plucked his captain and the interpreter from a nearby FSB where they had fled. I gave the captain a pair of my fatigues since his were in shreds. Col Brownlee is most certainly in the bottom of the stream near his listening site that was overrun. My boss and I debriefed the captain, and he said that as they were fleeing their site, Col Brownlee could not keep up wading through the stream, and ordered the captain and interpreter to keep going, not to wait for him. Later, when I was in Pleiku, I picked up a used set of fatigues, and they turned out to have BG Wear's name and rank on them! I also knew Cpt Jack Finch very well. We went on to Ft. Huachuca, Intel School, and were across the hall from each other at the BOQ! Later, we met again at Inscom in Arlington, VA, as I was the liaison officer for the Intel school to Inscom. Jack and I worked out many B52 strikes in the 23rd's bunker in Kontum. Have spiraled in to Dak To many times, and attended briefings at Tanh Canh, 23rd's FOB nearly every day for the entire year 72. Richard L. Montgomery, LTC, USA, ret.

PS: Just picked up Col Mckenna's book yesterday. Awesome! Can't put it down! Thanks!!

Richard Montgomery <>
Tucson, AZ USA - Wednesday, August 24, 2011 at 10:21:20 (EDT)

Sorry!! I know you get a lot of these requests but I’m trying to reach Robert “Bob” McDonald, CPT once the XO for the 57th AHC. We were in action involving a shot down med evac in the pass just north of Pleiku… very bad weather. He covered me with a cobra gun team – great job. The whole hospital was on the helipad cheering when we landed with the whole crew – can’t recall how many, but there was a bunch. I would like to see and talk with my old friend Bob again – we also shared a few drinks at Camp Holloway. Thanks for your help.

Sam Slaughter < >
Tampa , Florida - Friday, July 29, 2011 at 22:08:18 (EDT)

Great web site! It looks very professional! Keep up the good work!

- Tuesday, July 12, 2011 at 13:20:45 (EDT)

I was a doorgunner with the 119th from Aug 1970 thru Oct 1970 when the company was dismantaled and sent back to the states. I flew many missions into Doc To and Kantum. There was a special forces camp just north of Pleiku and we took them into Cambodia and Laos. The 119 was based in An Khe at the time.

Jack Norman
Concord, NC USA - Thursday, June 30, 2011 at 20:25:10 (EDT)

Wonderful site!

Khalid <>
London, UK - Wednesday, May 25, 2011 at 10:51:43 (EDT)

I would like to know the specific coordinates, or see the location on a map, of the site where John Paul Vann's chopper went down. I plan on visiting Vietnam in a year or two, and want to see the site. Thanks for any help you can give.

Arkansas USA - Wednesday, May 11, 2011 at 23:30:14 (EDT)

Dear Daddy,
It's almost 6 years now since you passed away. I have heard from many of your friends and colleagues from Kontum on this site. It helps to hear the old stories of your exploits in Viet Nam. I never realized how many people you and your pilots saved during Tet.
You might like to know that Steven graduates from flight school in 2 months. He qualified rotary on Blackhawks and will also get fixed wing training on the army equivalent of a Lear jet. You would be so proud.
Almost as proud as your family continues to be of your service to our great nation in the Central Highlands and other destinations unknown.
I still miss you. I just can't seem to get over your death, probably never will, but please know that your legacy lives on in my son.
All the way Dad...airborne.

Tamara Hall Mooradian <>
Fairfield, CA USA - Monday, May 09, 2011 at 21:06:49 (EDT)

Sunday April 17, 2011
To all American VN vets, you are my brothers-in-arms. I wish to take this opportunity to express my profound thanks to you all for your selfless help to protect freedom and democracy for the Republic of Viet Nam (RVN), my birth country. Regardless of what the misled, misinformed or ignorant people think or say, in my mind, a former Vietnamese fighter pilot who had fought along with you against the evil North Vietnamese Communists since the mid-fifties, the U.S. military had performed admirably, fought valiantly. In compliance with the Paris Agreement, the last U.S. combat troops left Viet Nam in March 1973. The RVN continued to fight courageously until the U.S. politicians cut military supply to the RVN to the bone. While the RVN was fighting a life and death war with ammunition on quota, the Soviet Union and Red China quadrupled their military aid to our enemy, the North Vietnamese Communists. The imbalance of power clearly favored the Communists and that was the cause of the collapse of the RVN in April 1975. The U.S. military had nothing to do with the fall of the RVN nor was it defeated by the North Vietnamese Communists as the bold-faced Communists shamelessly claimed. In fact, the North Vietnamese Communists were ready to surrender had the U.S. continued the Xmas bombing in 1972 for a few more days. Unfortunately, the U.S. politicians and the liberal, biased news media at the time turned an imminent military victory into a political defeat, not the U.S. military. God bless you all.
Hoi B. Tran

Hoi B. Tran <>
Cerritos, CA US - Sunday, April 17, 2011 at 22:02:40 (EDT)

I was a gunner and cc in the 180th ASHC "Big Windy" shortly after the main battle took place. My bird was assigned to retrieve the A1E that the VNAF had down at Kontum. By the time we recovered the bird, the engine had been removed but we still had to burn off fuel to get it off the ground. God what a heavy plane that was. I don't think I went in to Kontum more than twice without recieving some kind of fire, didn't like the place at all. We recieved mortor fire while refueling there once, a snake took off with peter pilot left on the ground and trailing 50 foot of fuel hose. We pulled out and over the village, where behold, a VC flag flying right in the middle of the village. Hope everyone made it home ok, and welcome home.

Jerry Waller <>
Trenton, Florida - Monday, April 11, 2011 at 21:16:28 (EDT)

I was the Mess Sgt at Lane til June 72. It sure got hectic on the roads. I wish all of you the best and had joy reading this site. Hope to hear from anyone who knew me.

Leonard Malenosky <>
Uniontown, PA USA - Wednesday, March 30, 2011 at 20:56:56 (EDT)

I was with the 7/17 B Troop and did some flying with the Scouts. We did a lot of flying around Dat to, FSB 6. That place had a LOT of stuff going on

Timothy Flood <>
Stockton, Calif. USA - Wednesday, March 30, 2011 at 16:04:40 (EDT)

I know a couple of my classmates whose been to war and now that they're retired, they went back to the place and devoted doing community service.

- Monday, March 28, 2011 at 01:32:51 (EDT)

I flew with the 180th during this battle sure enjoyed the soccer field. Thanks for the sight, brings back so many memories. I was informed of this sight by Jim Gorday a couple of days ago. We hadn’t spoken for 39 years.

Thanks so much. Cpt. Walter Padgett retired backyard grass cutter.

Walt Padgett <>
- Monday, March 14, 2011 at 12:44:20 (EDT)

I was a gunner and crew chief with the 180th ASHC shortly after the main fighting in Kontum. We were refueling there when mortor fire started coming in. Seemed that every time we were in the area we were shot at. Welcome home to all that made it back.

Jerry Waller <>
Trenton, Florida - Sunday, February 27, 2011 at 10:46:49 (EST)

Great site. I am in Kontum now and this site answers a lot of questions.

- Friday, February 18, 2011 at 06:04:55 (EST)

I was commander of the 57th at Kontum in the spring of 69. We supported Pat's Hospital in Kontum and the mung village outside of the city. What happened to Pat and her nurses? Was the mung village wiped out? One of the things I wonder about.

Editor's Note: Dr. Patricia Smith died in December, 2004- her obituary is available for viewing.

James Ted Kearns <>
Platteville, WI USA - Monday, February 14, 2011 at 23:32:29 (EST)

I was the crew chief on the C130 (1854) that blew the tire in Kontum. Three maintenance personnel did come out of Tan Sun Nhut later that morning, myself, a hydraulic tech and an assistant crew chief (Gadkie- not sure). We came in on another C130 that did a roll through, our palletized equipment was push off and we followed by jumping.
Oh- and they told us we would be on the ground before sunrise, that didn't happen.
The rockets started coming in before we could get the tire off the axle.
Anyways we ran to a ditch in-front-fuel out of the damaged wing started coming our way, moved to a bunker. Found the flight crew of 1854 in yet another bunker. The Gadkie was hit in the arm by shrapnel.
A helicopter was finally able to make it in, loaded him on board and off to Pieiku ( I believe) we went.
At the hospital they pulled the shrapnel out of Gadkie's arm, sewed him up (gave him piece) and back to Tan Sun Nhut we went.
Never saw Gadkie again, I was one day short of returning to CCK-and 30 days short returning to the States.
Never knew how it ended with 1854-- but should been a jack under the axle--

Brookfield, Illinois USA - Monday, January 03, 2011 at 16:10:03 (EST)

Nice site, will be back. Served with A/1/503d, 173d Abn Bde, Feb 67-Feb 68. Didn't not keep up with the war much after getting back to the States. Was around Dak To from Jul67 until Deros in 68. 11B2P - 11C2P MOS. Welcome Home! Some gave some, some gave all! Airborne!

Gene Counselman <>

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