Arriving in September in Saigon on a aircraft known as the Flying Tiger. We left Fort Lewis en route to Korea; some hours later, the pilot informed us that we were being diverted to Vietnam.
There was a hush on the aircraft; one could hear a pin drop. Many of the men on board had just returned from a tour of duty in Vietnam, and they were not too excited about going back. I would finally be assigned to the 10th Cavalry just below a place known as "Hong Kong" mountain, An-khe.
Being a new man in the unit, I was bedded down next to an "arty unit" without knowing it.
At 0300 that morning, all hell broke loose.
It was black dark, and I couldn't locate my weapon because of the heavy vibration of the big guns going off. The program lasted for about one hour, and I prayed to God, "Let me locate my rifle and I will keep it close to my body forever more."
The next morning when the sun came up, I discovered that it was only outgoing artillery.