Within 69 hours, after its departure from Japan, group elements launched the first attack against communist (Viet Cong) forces. While early missions involved Marine helicopters providing logistical support for South Vietnamese troops in their struggle to drive communist Viet Cong guerrillas from their country, this role quickly expanded when 1st MAW pilots and crewmen were called upon to perform their traditional role of providing close air support for Marine combat units as American involvement in the war escalated. The Group's mission in combat was carried out primarily by the F-8 support; air defense intercept; visual, photographic and electronic reconnaissance; electronic countermeasures; airborne tactical air control; illumination and combat logistical support for air/ground elements of the allied forces. While early missions involved Marine helicopters providing logistical support for South Vietnamese troops in their struggle to drive communistHelicopters played an extensive role in 1st MAW air operations in Vietnam, as Marine pilots flew UH-34's and later CH-46's and CH-53's to transport Marines into landing zones near suspected enemy concentrations, and to evacuate the wounded following combat engagements. Helicopters, supplemented by C-130 transports where there were landing strips, were also used to re-supply Marines in the field at remote outposts. Other Marine pilots, flew UH-1E Hueys, and Ah-1 Cobras on photo reconnaissance missions to locate suspected Viet Cong troop concentrations, and to identify potential landing zones for future operations. Many of these choppers also provided deployment of the Marine Corps' most sophisticated attack and fighter aircraft including the Douglas A-4, and the McDonnell F4B, as well as the maintenance, ordnance, and other support personnel necessary to ensure these Marine aircraft were ready when called upon to provide close air support for Marine ground units or other missions vital to the war effort.
Carl next to rocket crater near FSB Hell 55, ten miles south of Danang.
Carl (L.) with Don Meyr somewhere in Arizona Territory.
Carl, Don Meyr, "Crotch" Koch, and "Chewy" Wrigley near FSB Hell 55.
The Way We Were
1st Marine Air Wing
Carl (R.) celebrating Christmas in Danang, 1969
On top of Monkey Mountain near Danang
Carl (L.) at "Hell 55" Fire Support Base
At home in Danang.
Carl and fiancé Patricia in November 1966
Gary Hutchison Memorial Chapter 1028
Vietnam Veterans of America