Southern Cross News Article

1st Squadron / First Cavalry - First Regiment of Dragoons
Southern Cross information
for D/1/1 CAV
C/1/1 CAV
For date 700102

D/1/1 CAV was a US Army unit
C/1/1 CAV was a US Army unit
Primary service involved, US Army
Quang Ngai Province, I Corps, South Vietnam
Location, Quang Ngai City

The following is an edited version of an article titled " Cavalry Routs NVA In Lowlands" by SP4 Harry Baumann of the Americal IO dated 2 Jan 1970. CHU LAI - It was a routine operation for the light cavalry team. They were on a visual recon of an area 5 miles northwest of Quang Ngai City when they observed an enemy soldier evading into a bunker. The enemy soldier opened fire, but it proved foolish thing to do for the tiny ship came strafing in and quickly silenced the nemesis with fire from the door-gunner. As the helicopter set down to pick up a number of forsaken documents and a pack, the serenity of the post-fire area seemed ominous. Suddenly the trees around them came to life spewing small arms fire. This scene began the largest single action in southern I Corps in more than three months. The team from D Trp., 1-1st Cav., made it back to their home base and rounded up their "heavies" (2 LOH's, 2 Cobras, 2 troops ships) along with their crack aero-rifle team and returned to the area. At the target area the situation was evaluated and a plan was formed. The operations order went into effect. The ground troops began to sweep the area and discovered a line of well-prepared bunkers and fighting positions. As soon as the LOH disappeared the F-4s placed ordnance (in the form of 500lb bombs, 20mm cannon) on the enemy positions. The trees, grass, dirt, rocks spewed through the sky. After the smoke cleared the "Blues" continued to search the area and found the signs of recent enemy activity. Suddenly the element began to receive a large volume of small arms fire from a tree-line. The fire was an NVA company situated in small teams of three to five near the coastal area. Cavalry troops sloshed through mangrove swamps along the tree-line, firing continuously. During one phase of the action a 35-minute close-in battle left three NVA dead, two carbines and one AK-47 found. Meanwhile a "Sabre" LOH zapped three enemy soldiers as they were spotted fleeing a bunker. Hearing the battle over the radio, C-Trp., 1-1st Cav., nearing the end of their own sweep joined the ground platoon of D Troop. Under the command of CPT David L. Miller (Blossvale, N.Y.), C-Trp. went into the action using the back way. "As I started approaching the area I came across the enemy, clad in green shirts and black pants. We came in from behind and caught them by surprise," he said. Operating with APC's C Troop literally rolled over the enemy burying many of them in their bunkers. As the APC's came in from the south, D Trp. was pushing in from the north. The pincer movement crushed the NVA. At the battles' end the enemy suffered great losses. More than 50 enemy were killed; 12 were detained and ten individual weapons were captured. The enemy had been found by aerial recon, fixed, engaged and routed by the rifle platoon, ground troops and APC's. The routine mission had been a success and the fighting men of Delta and Charlie Troop 1-1st Cavalry once again showed the enemy what a cavalry team is all about. Photo Caption- The new Sheridan tanks stand proud and straight at ceremonies honoring their arrival at Chu Lai. The tanks assigned to the 1-1st Cavalry have since been on their first field exercise in the Americal area of operation and have proven to be a vital asset to the mobility and firepower of the Division.

U.S. Army photo by SP4 D. K. Williams
Comments: _CPT Miller, David L.; CO of C/1/1st CAV;
The source for this information was 7001_340.SCR supplied by Les Hines (Southern Cross newspaper from 23rd Inf Div)