CHAPTER CHATTER

The Official Newsletter of the
Shenandoah Valley Chapter #313
Korean War Veterans Association
Paul E. Bombardier,  Editor
January 2017

France.

I went to the University of Hawaii and joined the U.S. Army Reserve Officers Training Corp (ROTC) since the war in Vietnam was steadily requiring more of our military service members in Vietnam. I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and was commissioned as a 2nd Lt and entered the Army in September, 1967.

I entered the Army as a Quartermaster Officer and volunteered to become a Parachute “Rigger” and went to the Army’s Jump School at Fort Benning, the Parachute Rigger and Air Drop Class at Fort Lee, a six-month tour with the 801st Maintenance Battalion, 101st Airborne Division at Fort Campbell. My 1st Parachute Rigger job was as a 2nd Lt as Platoon Leader with the 623rd Air Equipment and Depot Company in Cam Rahn Bay in Vietnam.  I ran a platoon which dried, cleaned, and repaired the large cargo chutes. We had 14 sewing machines to repair these chutes. These large G-12 cargo chutes (over 10,000 used in Vietnam) were used to airdrop food, ammunitions, and other supplies to the Special Forces Groups through Vietnam as well as the Marines surrounded at Khe Shan.  My platoon worked 16 hours a day doing our cargo chute restoration job during the day then supported rigging the air drops after midnight at the air field to be dropped to the Marines.  We were also called to guard the bridges coming into Cam Rahn Bay during the “Tet” season when the North Vietnamese and Viet Cong attacked many of the major cities in Vietnam.  We were fortunate to have Korean Army Troops in front of us defending the area against Viet Cong and North Vietnamese troops. 

After a year, I was stationed at Yuma Proving Grounds, as an Air Drop Testing Officer, testing equipment introduced into the Army to test if they could be airdropped and ship via air on

Air Force Cargo planes.

I then went to Fort Lee to the Quarter Master School for the QM Advance Course.

I was then sent to Tuscaloosa, Alabama for a Master’s Degree in Business Administration. This was my introduction to “Bear” Bryant coaching the National Championship teams at the University of Alabama.  

Upon graduation, I was diverted to Korea for 13 months to work at the 8th U.S. Army in Seoul, Korea as a Deputy Director over 32 Army Officers and NCO Clubs, a Rod and Gun Club, a Flying Club and the Army’s Najia Hotel, a Transient Facility, for military coming in and out of Korea. 

My next job was as a Company Commander of a Supply and Service Company for the 2nd Armored Division stationed at Fort Hood in Killeen Texas.  I had 240 troops supporting the Division with supplies, petroleum products, web equipment, and many other supplies. My next tour was at the 2nd Armored Division Material Management Center who did all the ordering of supplies for the division.  I ran the Automated Division which did the punch card and print processing received from the Division Computer Center.  The Commanding General of this Division was Major Gen George Patton, Jr.  I will tell you later about my experiences with Gen Patton, Jr.  

I was then sent to Fort Leavenworth to attend the Army Command and General Staff College.  During this course, my oldest daughter and other kids purchased two quarter horses which they help break and train.  She also purchased a horse trailer.

I then attended a Computer Automation Course in Indianapolis, Indiana, and became a Computer Automation Officer leading a team of computer experts extending the Army’s largest