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VMO-6 Bulldog Tango

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  • VMO-6 Bulldog Tango

    Request forwarded by MGySgt Tom Constantine, USMC (Ret)

    Maybe you can help me here. I was with Bravo Co, 3rd Recon and ran my last patrol was up in the DMZ in November of 1968. We were inserted about 500 meters south of the Ben Hai river. We were dropped into an NVA base camp north of the Razorback. The NVA moved down off the LZ as we were inserted. We spent 2 days trying to get out of the area, but the NVA were blocking all the routes off the LZ. I was the assistant patrol leader and carried the PRC25 radio. On the second day the patrol leader took another man and tried to locate an escape route off the LZ. They moved about 300 meters down the slope. I was on the radio when I looked up and saw 2 NVA about 10 meters away, looking for us or signs of our departure. They hadn't seen me but when I reached down for my rifle they saw the movement. I opened fire taking both of them out but we alerted all the rest of the NVA in the area and they tried to overrun us before we could get support. I was on the radio plotting on-call defense artillery coordinates when this happened and I was able to request immediate artillery support to the north and west. We held them off with arty and small arms fire until we could get air support. An OV-10 Bronco came on station. His call sign was 'Bulldog Tango". I was working with him to keep the NVA off our butts and he was directing the F-4s as they were making bombing runs. We were on the highest ground in the area and the OV-10 and F-4s were working below us on the slope leading up to our position. We were actually looking down into the cockpits of the OV-10 and F-4s as they kept the NVA off of us. The patrol leader and the other man made it back to us about the same time as the 46s came on station to extract us. The fixed wings were taking AA fire from the north and west so the 46s came in from the south east.

    Our team designation was 2-B-2, "Clemson Song". We made it out and back to our area near the airstrip at Quang Tri. I was able to find out that the OV-10 pilot was landing at Quang Tri and we met briefly on the airstrip. The team leader and I got with our CO and we tried to get the OV-10 pilot written up for an award or medal, but I ended up on a medical hold and then was rotated back to the States. I never did hear if the OV-10 pilot got an award and I didn't get his name. I'll never forget his call sign - "Bulldog Tango" or the bravery he and the F-4 pilots displayed.

    I'm assuming he was with VMO-6 and wondered if there was any way to track him down? Any assistance would be appreciated.

    Semper Fi and thanks for all you guys did for us in Recon.
    Dave Bushlow dbushlow@me.com
    Slick
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