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"Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

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  • #16
    Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

    Originally posted by John Ace Hunt View Post
    I didn't see what good they were. Glad we weren't involved very much. Semper Fi, and READY-APP.
    In retrospect, you're probably right.

    I know that the squadron crews didn't like the assignment, especially the seasoned pilots. They were quite aware of the unreliability of the equipment, and the vulnerability of sniffer slicks flying on the treetops at very slow speeds.

    Of course, every conflict has questionable mission assignments.

    Regards,
    Regards,

    Merlin Clayton
    VietNam: April, 1968 - Nov 30, 1969
    H&MS-16, HMM-165, HMM-263, HML-167, VMO-2

    Comment


    • #17
      Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

      I do agree Merlin. The bad boys knew what we were doing, and didn't want to give their positions away. Seems a few did though. Then they stopped. On one mission we had to take the Army on an AO, our heavy flew us right over a whole NVA Division, and he acted like we didn't have anything on the ground under the jungle canopy. It was way northwest of the north west corner of S. Vietnam. Above Vandergriff. We stayed so long on it we flamed out coming into the fuel pits. Glad I didn't Fly with him to many times after that. Tried to tell him and them, the whole place was loaded, but not a one listened to me. God was with us that day, I KNOW. Semper Fi, and READY-APP.

      Comment


      • #18
        Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

        I believe I was one of the first pilots to fly the sniffer missions, also the "firefly" missions. This was around the summer of 68. When the OV-10's started coming into country (around June 68) they started transfering huey pilots from VMO-2 to a new huey squadron -HML-167. I believe Maj Dunn was the first CO. As was stated in previous posts, at the time I flew it, it could not really tell the difference between human and animal urine. If we ever got any good intel about it I never found out. Flew right at treetop level and sometimes stumbled across NVA, called in the two gunship cover birds and got some KIA that way. Duke Lind
        Originally posted by mclayton View Post
        I'm looking for anyone who flew APD "Sniffer" missions out of Marble Mountain in Vietnam.

        I flew these missions during the late '68, early '69 timeframe as "Sniffer" operator from H&MS 16. I think the operational squadrons were VMO-2, and/or HML-167 (I'm trying to clarify my memory). During this timeframe, I remember losing one of our guys in to enemy fire (in addition to the Huey crew). He was Cecil "Barrel" Wagner. Another one of guys was shot in the foot (Sam ? from Memphis area). But this is the extent of my memory.

        I read posts from Sgt Doug Cunningham who flew these missions from a few years back, but nothing recently. If you're still out there please let me know.

        Regards,

        Merlin Clayton

        Comment


        • #19
          Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

          Originally posted by dukelind View Post
          I believe I was one of the first pilots to fly the sniffer missions, also the "firefly" missions. This was around the summer of 68. When the OV-10's started coming into country (around June 68) they started transfering huey pilots from VMO-2 to a new huey squadron -HML-167. I believe Maj Dunn was the first CO. As was stated in previous posts, at the time I flew it, it could not really tell the difference between human and animal urine. If we ever got any good intel about it I never found out. Flew right at treetop level and sometimes stumbled across NVA, called in the two gunship cover birds and got some KIA that way. Duke Lind
          Duke:
          You are correct: Maj G.H. Dunn was HML 167 C.O. I was a gunner and flew a couple sniffers, one with Cpt John Henry Key, . Both were north/northwest of danang:Elephant Valley and near Hai Van Pass. Not very productive
          Dennis hml 167
          1968

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          • #20
            Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

            My Bird most always flew low as often as we could, when Flying alone. Didn't have any cover. Kind of wish we had. Semper Fi, and READY-APP.

            Comment


            • #21
              Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

              Originally posted by dweathers View Post
              Duke:
              You are correct: Maj G.H. Dunn was HML 167 C.O. I was a gunner and flew a couple sniffers, one with Cpt John Henry Key, . Both were north/northwest of danang:Elephant Valley and near Hai Van Pass. Not very productive
              Dennis hml 167
              1968
              Dennis,

              After reviewing my military records several weeks ago, I found out that I was certified on the APD "Sniffer" equipment in Dec '68. I flew my first "Sniffer" mission on Dec 1, 1968 with HML-167. My last mission was the end of March '69 with VMO-2 because I transferred to HMM-165 on April 1st, '69.

              In subsequent reviews of After Action Reports on the Texas Tech website I found comprehensive reports for VMO-2, but the reports for HML-167 were sketchy with many time periods missing.

              Are you aware of any other locations for AARs for 167 during the '68-'69 timeframe?
              Regards,

              Merlin Clayton
              VietNam: April, 1968 - Nov 30, 1969
              H&MS-16, HMM-165, HMM-263, HML-167, VMO-2

              Comment


              • #22
                Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

                HML 367 had a Sniffer as well in 1968. Here is a photo. Note the high tech method of attaching the probe to the skid. (Tape)
                Attached Files

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                • #23
                  Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

                  Tape!

                  That's only because velcro wasn't invented yet.

                  Where was 367 flying out of back then?

                  Who is in the picture?
                  Regards,

                  Merlin Clayton
                  VietNam: April, 1968 - Nov 30, 1969
                  H&MS-16, HMM-165, HMM-263, HML-167, VMO-2

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

                    Originally posted by mclayton View Post
                    Dennis,

                    After reviewing my military records several weeks ago, I found out that I was certified on the APD "Sniffer" equipment in Dec '68. I flew my first "Sniffer" mission on Dec 1, 1968 with HML-167. My last mission was the end of March '69 with VMO-2 because I transferred to HMM-165 on April 1st, '69.

                    In subsequent reviews of After Action Reports on the Texas Tech website I found comprehensive reports for VMO-2, but the reports for HML-167 were sketchy with many time periods missing.

                    Are you aware of any other locations for AARs for 167 during the '68-'69 timeframe?
                    MClayton: AAR are sketchy for HML 167 during this time frame. I joined HML 167 mid May 68, but orders also show TDY to VMO 2. Was Only Maj Dunn, Cpl Nobles in Office on arrival. My self and Cpl Bishop were 1st Ordnance personnel--believe HML 167 records were included in VMO 2 AAR due to lack of personnel and majority pilots were VMO 2.

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                    • #25
                      Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

                      Phu Bai and yours truly, Harry Lynch.

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

                        I seem to recall that VMO-2 flew "Sniffer" missions during either late 67 or early 68. I think one pilot, Capt. "Windy" Randal, managed to tangle with a lone tree on one mission.

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                        • #27
                          Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

                          Originally posted by jsmallen View Post
                          I seem to recall that VMO-2 flew "Sniffer" missions during either late 67 or early 68. I think one pilot, Capt. "Windy" Randal, managed to tangle with a lone tree on one mission.
                          JIM see your in Michigan! I'm in SAGINAW ,I'll have to look up your Area.

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Re: "Sniffer" Missions in Vietnam

                            I flew a couple (maybe three or four) sniffer missions with HML-167 during the fall of 1969. My MOS was 6242 Aviation Electrician with H&MS-16. Actually, I'm pretty sure I remember serving with a guy named Cunningham during that time period. There were a few of us who wanted to fly the mission (very young and not-too-bright) but the pilots, who were somewhat more intelligent and experienced, were never very excited about flying low and slow over the jungle. I also flew a few missions on a DC-3 shoving flares out the cargo door over the DMZ.

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