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In the Black Panther Motorpool

Bear Cat Motorpool. It was always nice to be back at Bear Cat for a few short days, get much needed sleep, clean clothes, hot meals and cold beer at the Black Panther EM club. No one slept well or had the time to sleep in the field. I usually slept sitting up in my drivers seat. Everyone shared in night watch, so our unit watches were split three ways, about 4 hours for each man on the fifty. The VTR had infra-red night periscopes that helped in seeing in the dark. The enemy would crawl in and turn claymore mines around to point toward you. A few of those enemy are no longer here thanks to night vision on the tracks.

Working with Arty., Thunder Road

Working with Artillary. We didn't always have artillery support, but we had our own mortar tracks that did a great job of repelling the enemy. The enemy mortars could be heard making a thumping sound which gave you about 5-10 seconds to find some cover, or hunch down in a hatch if you were on a 50 or 60 machinegun.


Village Huts. These hootches were made of thatch and poles, and had hard clay floors, a common sight in Vietnam.


Black Panthers heading North When the entire Black Panther Battalion was on the move, it was quite a sight to see and listen to. We were only in Siagon once or twice. The streets are so narrow a few cars were run over and flattened in the night run.


Rare Sight. A church we passed on our way towards the Cambodia Border. The country was predominately Buddhist, with little prayer stations along roads. This was a rare sight for Vietnam.


Life in the field. There was usually a lot to do regardless of where you were. One of our duties was checking drivers logs to insure needed fluid levels and maintenance was continuing. The last thing we needed was missing units or warriors which weakened our force and made us more vulnerable. I managed to squeeze in a letter home occassionally, but basically we remained active and ready to roll to support any unit in War Zones C&D.

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