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Diary 9 - 15 Oct 1968

9 Oct - [field strength 495. 14 APC DL. Quiet nite. Sct plt escort TN-DT convoy w/ 1 sect; open Rt 22 to CP 23 with one section.
A Co. - open Rt 26 w/2 plats & 164 RF Co.
B Co. - Road runner* to Soui da & then join A Co.
C Co. - Stand down - 1st day.
2 plt AP
No mail

[notes at bottom of page]

Unauth head gear
Clean numbers on tracks

*I do not remember the meaning of the term "Road Runner."
I queried the 4/23 message board in October 2004 and got the following replies:
"From the Glossary of Mounted Combat in Viet Nam by Donn Starry: Normally an operation with a group of vehicles that travel a road for the purpose of keeping the enemy off balance and making the presence of friendly forces felt among the local populace.
From Doug Conn:
"We used the term "Running the road" or "Road Running" when we didn't have time to do a thorough sweep and had to use the road anyway.
Many times we would "run" Rt 26 to secure the convoy.
It was a hard decision to make when I had to pick who was lead track that day."
From Rick Lewis:
"Having never heard "Road Runner" before but judging from the term, I would have to agree with the others that "Road Running" was probably actually traveling within the convoy instead of our normal practice of sweeping the road and then setting up static security for the convoy as it came through.

If the term refers to running the road without first sweeping for landmines, then we made just such  a "run" from Rawlins to DT around midnight one night to help secure a downed helicopter.

NOW, That was one scary ride!! Any of you that missed out on a full-speed, "Balls-to-the wall" blacked out, run down the highway at night, you missed a mighty fun experience.
The "pucker factor" is really elevated at night.
The tracks, throw sparks all the time, but they are real visible at night.
The first thing that goes through your mind is that someone has hit a landmine.
Add choking dust into all of this and you have a real "barrel of fun night" on your hands.
 I don't think I breathed from the time we hit RT 26 until we cleared the rubber at DT."

From Donny M:
"I hated the days we had to be lead track to sweep Rt 26.
I was sent to
TNBC mine sweeping school after arriving; but we never used a mine sweep method because we did not have time to actually sweep Rt 26.
Just run it.

First thing was to make sure to over-ride the governor on the track engine so you could go wide open. Second thing was make sure the soda girls were waiting for you. (great intel.)"
Quotes from 1966-67 After-Action Reports furnished by Jim Yarborough:
route-domination operations using all-arms teams ('Road Runner')

10 Oct - [field strength] 488. 10 APC. Quiet nite. Sct plt open Rt 22 to CP 23 & escort DT-TN-DT convoy.

A Co. - open Rt 26 then return to TNBC
B Co. - Road runner to Mo Co, local RIF
C Co. - Stand down, move to Rawlins
2 plt AP

1 letter ML

[notes at bottom of page]

B & C Co less Berning
Military courtesy
Loaded weapons
Mess, clutter, dirty areas - top of tracks
Claymores out
Inside track
Shirts not on
Police of chopper supply pad
Officers Call


11 Oct - [field strength] 482. 10 APC Quiet nite. Sct plt open Rt 22 to CP 23 (Departed 0700-arrived 0800). Escort arty from Buell to Logan then DT-TN-DT convoy both ways.

A Co. - stood down - 1st day.
B Co. - open Rt 26.
C Co. -road runner to Loc Ninh with RF Co.
2 plt AP

No mail

[notes at bottom of page]

Ammo storage area
police - chopper pad
A11 - no E Co D?
A51 - ?
C43 - no 461-5 from Maint
HQ 84 - no job order - switch w/ HQ 10
A13 - release signal should have been WO

12 Oct - [field strength] 505. 10 APC Quiet nite. Sct plt open Rt 22 to CP 23 (Departed 0700-arrived 0800). Escort DT-TN-DT convoy both ways.

C Co. -Open Rt 26 w/ RF.
B Co. - RIF in north Rubber w/ RF164
A Co. - stand down - 2nd day.
2015 - Rec'd mission to escort 155 btry to TNBC. C Co. given mission. Returned by 2400.

No mail

6 - 1/4 ton trls in G4 yard for TI [technical inspection]

Pre AGI [Annual General Inspection]-CMMI [A pre-inspection was a courtesy-type look at the battalion's equipment to give the commanders an idea of what maintenance areas needed to be emphasized prior to the real inspection.] -
Passed weapons, commo, and special purpose equipment.
Failed automotive and shop procedures.

13 Oct - [field strength] 490. 10 APC. Quiet nite. Sct plt open Rt 22 to CP 23 (departed 0700-arrived 08050. Escort DT-TN-DT convoy.

C Co. Open Rt 26 w/RF
B Co. RIF mtd north of base camp. Returned to base camp at 1600.
A Co. Stand down 3d day - arrived Rawlins 1600
2 AP's
Rec'd letter ML & Shirley - wrote ML 7 Pop

14 Oct - [field strength] 470. 63 malaria. 9 APC + 8 tracks. Quiet nite. Sct plt open Rt 22 7 escort TN-DT-TN convoy.

C Co. W/ 163 RF Co. - mtd/dismtd RIF north of Rubber - one old BC.
A Co. - open Rt 26 w/ RF Co.
B Co. - stand down 1st day
2 Ap's

[list of items at bottom of page]

Foot Recon - Topping off [These were probably two separate items placed side-by-side.]
Tracking of vehs
SP4 Hayes, Homer RA 14912798 SVC Co (S4)


15 Oct - [field strength] 459. 10 APC (+ 6 tracks).
Quiet nite except 105 fired 1100 rds,
155 - 500 rds.
Scts open Rt 22 & escort DT-TN-DT convoy.

C Co. open Rt 26 w/ 164 Co.
B Co. stand down 2d day
2 AP's
Rec'd 2 letters ML - wrote ML

FSB Rawlins III 1968
LTC Cliff Neilson (l) presenting trophy to LTC Forrest Pierce (r) CO 7-11 Arty,
for "Superior Combat Support"

FSB Rawlins III Oct 1968
LTC Forest Pierce (l) LTC Cliff Neilson (r)
Commander's trophy presentation for Superior Combat Support

Cliff Neilson
Mohawk 6
May-Nov 1968

Illegitimi nil carborundum

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