|173rd Airborne Brigade Command Huey - 1969
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The 173rd Airborne Brigade deployed to Vietnam in May,
1965. They served in III Corps, based at Bien Hoa, until mid 1967. They
moved to II Corps and based at An Khe until April 1969. They then moved
toward the coast to conduct operations along Route 1-the main north/south
highway in Vietnam. They based out of Bong Son in II Corps until leaving
Vietnam in August, 1971.
This UH-1H, served as a command aircraft for the 173rd Brigade in early-mid 1969. The Brigade logo is displayed on the front cargo door. The logo possibly also appeared on the nose. Photos of some other 173rd ships from this period have the brigade nose insignia. A red and white Brigadier General's placard is displayed on the frame post behind the pilot's door. The front edges of the skids are painted yellow. A step was attached to each side of most command and VIP Hueys. It was located just below the bottom edge of the cargo deck, and just behind the front cargo door. The tail can't be seen on photos of this aircraft, so tail details are speculative. A photograph of this aircraft was seen in the April 25, 1969 issue of Life magazine.
173rd Airborne Brigade Command Huey - 1969
|Another 173rd C&C ship. This aircraft, tail number "18571", flew with "The Caspers" Aviation Platoon. The Caspers' entire service in Vietnam supported the 173rd Brigade. In the photos of this aircraft, the 173rd insignia is on the pilot's doors. The nose art is a stylized version of "Casper the Ghost", with the legend "CASPER 571" painted in white above the ghost. The leading edge of the tail is painted black. This ship also has the step below the cargo bay deck as seen on many command and VIP Hueys. It also has the leading edge of the skid painted yellow.
|AMERICAL VIP Huey - 1970
The 23rd Division AMERICAL was formed in September,
1967 with headquarters at Chu Lai, in southern I Corps. It served in I Corps
until deactivation in November, 1971.
An Americal VIP ship as photographed in 1970. The AMERICAL division insignia is on the nose. The front skid tips are painted red. The rear cargo doors have been removed from the aircraft. The usual front cargo doors with windows have been replaced by window-less doors. The tail has a white circle insignia - meaning is unknown at this time. The ship number, "022" is painted in white above the circle. The ship was called "Pelican 22" after the original Pelican lift platoon (161st AHC) that was deactivated in 1968 and absorbed into the 123rd Aviation Battalion (Americal). This VIP ship had the step added below the cargo bay deck.
|AMERICAL C&C Huey 1970-71
This is one of AMERICAL Division's C&C/VIP ships from the 1970-71
period. AMERICAL directed each aviation unit that supported it to assign
aircraft to the division command staff for C&C and VIP duties. Aviation
units were directed to remove unit insignia from the ships they sent on to
the division. Aircraft 70-15719 was a brand new UH-1H recently delivered to
the first platoon "Yellow Jackets" of the 116th AHC. This Huey was nicknamed
"King Bee 719" by the 116th. When the ship was assigned to AMERICAL
the 116th "Hornet" nose art and distinctive yellow skid markings remained on
the ship - in defiance of the division directive.
In addition to the 116th Hornet nose art, a distinctive rectangle emblem appeared on the tail. The rectangle was divided into red-blue-red vertical stripes, with the AMERICAL Division insignia placed on the blue bar. The rectangle was outlined in white. The five-digit tail number was painted in two colors - the first two numbers (15) in black, and the last three digits (719) in yellow. A step was added below the cargo bay deck - a common practice for C&C and VIP ships.
|198th Brigade C&C Huey 1969-70
The 198th Brigade arrived in Vietnam in October, 1968.
It served in the I Corps, based at Chu Lai. The brigade left Vietnam in
The 198th Brigade command ship from late 1969 was a UH-1H, a/c number 69-15569. The ship was part of the 176th AHC "Minutemen", and displayed the "176" unit designation on the pilots' doors and "Minuteman" emblem on the tail. The rear tail boom end was painted white. It's difficult to distinguish the details of tail number from available photos. "569" was painted in either white or yellow - they appear white in the photos. The tail number may also have included "15" in black, but this detail is not clear from the photos. 176th AHC ships carried a red roof stripe, and white-red-white vertical stripes on the tail boom just before the horizontal tailplane. This ship also displayed the 198th Brigade emblem on the nose. As seen in other command and VIP ships, there was a step added just below the cargo bay deck.
|9th ROK (White Horse) Division C&C ship 1968-69
In May 1967 the 48th AHC was tasked with
providing aviation support to the 9th Republic of Korea (ROK) White Horse
Division in II Corps. The 48th set up base at Ninh Hoa along with the
command elements of the 9th ROK division.
Huey UH-1H 67-17348 was assigned to the 48th AHC in March 1968. It was given company and platoon markings (black "48" on pilots' doors, white skid tips, stinger cover, and tail number with first two digits white, and last three digits yellow). The ship had the red-white-blue vertical stripes of the 10th CAB on the tail boom. 48th AHC ships of this period also had a blue star logo trimmed in gold underneath the a/c number on the tail. At some point "348" was assigned as a C&C ship for the 9th ROK Division. In the photo I based this illustration on, "348" displayed the major general's placard designating the commanding general's ship. Most 48th ships wore a blue star trimmed in gold as nose art. The nose wasn't seen in the photo I studied of "348". However, several 48th ships had the insignia of the 9th ROK Division on the nose - at the request of that division. I assume that 48th ships wearing 9th ROK Division nose art were probably assigned as C&C ships for the Koreans. Although speculation at this time, it is probable that "348" had this nose art. "348" was damaged beyond repair in a landing accident in April 1969.
|4th Infantry Division C&C/VIP ship 1968-70
|The 4th Infantry
Division in Vietnam had an organic aviation element, the 4th
Aviation Battalion. The battalion consisted of two companies. A
Company was divided into 3 platoons. The 1st Platoon flew C&C and
VIP duties for the division (2nd and 3rd Platoons flew general
utility missions like troop transport and supply).
1st Platoon was named "the Lizards". Aircraft in the platoon were named "Lizard 1", "Lizard 2", etc... In 1968-70 the platoon flew UH-1Hs. Noses were painted completely OD. The platoon displayed a distinctive nose art - a cartoon lizard wearing white aviator's goggles. The aircraft had red stinger covers (tail ends) and red skid tips. A black spade was painted on the front cargo door on the right side of the ship. The ship number ("Lizard 7" is illustrated here) was painted in white in the center of the spade logo. The upper surface and outer edge of the horizontal tail plane/sync elevator began to be painted orange around 1969. A step was added below the cargo deck on 1st platoon ships. FM antennas were mounted on the skids at the front cross brace.
|4th Infantry Division C&C ship 1968-70
|This is another 4th Division C&C ship that flew with the 3rd Platoon, A Company, 4th Aviation Battalion. It was a UH-1H, a/c 15458. Although 1st Platoon was detailed for most C&C/VIP duties, this 3rd platoon ship was detailed to fly C&C duty with the division command. 3rd Platoon aircraft had green stinger covers/tail ends and green skid tips. A step was added below the cargo deck. FM antennas were added on the skids at the front cross brace. This aircraft also had a tail boom-mounted antenna. A large black radio console was mounted in the cargo bay behind the pilots' seats. The console held eight radios so that the division commander could communicate with various units as needed. The pilot of this aircraft in 1968-69 was CW2 Tim Wilkerson.
|199th Brigade C&C ship 1968-1970
|This Huey, UH-1H 67-17459, flew as a C&C ship for the 199th Light Infantry Brigade in 1968-1970. There were originally 3 UH-1Ds assigned to the H&H Company of the brigade (one of those ships was a/c 66-61113). When 67-17459 arrived (the first H model and 4th UH-1), it was assigned as the brigade commander's ship. A radio console was mounted in the cargo bay that held 8 radios. FM antennas were mounted on the skids at the front cross brace. A step was added on each side of the aircraft between the cargo deck and skids. The aircraft displayed the 199th Brigade emblem on the upper nose. The pilots' doors were painted with a unique emblem. - a white, flying wing over red and yellow flames, on a black background. 17459 also had the name "WARLORD" painted in black with white outline above the door insignia. The skid tips were painted white, but the front tip also had a red band across the top. (As new H models were assigned to the 199th to replace the older D models, the brigade commander took over the newest ship. 17459 was eventually detailed to other duties with H&H Company.)