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Capital (Tiger) Division shoulder patch of the Army of the Republic of Korea (ROK)













AMERICAL nose art seen on 123rd Hueys.


161st Assault Helicopter Company


"The Pelicans"


 The 161st AHC arrived in Vietnam in December, 1965. They went operational in January 1966 and set up operations in Pleiku, in II Corps. They supported the Korean "Capital" Division. In April 1967 they moved to Chu Lai in I Corps to begin support of combat elements that would become the AMERICAL Division. The 161st was deactivated in January 1968 and reorganized into the 123rd Aviation Battalion.   Click here to see Map

    click on helicopter illustrations to see larger images, then click "back arrow" to return to this page  

1966 - 161st AHC,  Aircraft: "839"  This 161st AHC UH-1D carried "high visibility" vertical stripes on the fuselage. This was commonly seen on aircraft recently arrived from the US. The unit designation "161" was painted in black on the pilots' doors. The ship number (in this case "839") was painted in yellow or white on the tail. The front ends of the skids were painted red. "839" had a small yellow placard on the frame post behind the pilot's door with a black number "2".

  1967 - 161st AHC, UH-1D   This is the same aircraft seen above, but with altered markings. The high visibility vertical stripes have been replaced by subdued black stripes. The red skid ends have been painted out. The changes to the ship's appearance over the period of a few months reflect lessons from combat actions - where bright colors made better aiming points for enemy gunners!  
  1968 - 123rd Aviation Battalion, UH-1H  After the 161st was deactivated and reorganized into the 123rd, the unit designation "161" was removed from the doors. It was replaced by the word "AMERICAL". It also appears from photos that the 123rd displayed five digits on the tail - the first two in black and the last three in white or yellow. 123rd ships also displayed the AMERICAL division insignia on the nose.  
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