D 2/8 Cav. 3/1 Cav. A.M. MayJn72
Posted by Philip Leekley on 20:13:42 04/24/10
trIf you link to TOW MISSILE SYSTEM CHRONOLOGY 1961-2000 (May 1972, 21 May 1972, 26 May 1972) and the relevant dates in the appended pdf document, you will read that men from 3rd bde. 1st Cav. div. were trained on the ground-based TOW system and deployed to (Pleiku and) Kontum.
The particular unit was D co. 2nd bn. 8th Cav. regiment. This same unit lost its commanding officer and 30-man platoon on 10 may 72 in between TOW training and deployment to the central highlands. [see angryskipperassociation.org honor roll]
I was one of those who fired a TOW in training--the blast of its launch nearly gives one a concussion--but was not rotated to Kontum from Pleiku, the fallback position. Before I could be rotated to Kontum the battle was won, so we and the rest of 3/1 Cav. stood down and those with 6+months in country came home to a hero's welcome--NOT!
My platoon leader, Robert Armitage, now in Iraq with Halliburtan, and/or others in the unit could add a few paragraphs to the battle account. It should not be overlooked or forgotten that American anti-tank infantry also took part in this battle alongside ARVN and US air and helicopter units.
And a big "thank you" to Jack Heslin for this excellent site.