History of the 12th Cav in Vietnam 27 Jul 1968 – 30 Nov 1971 According to the collective remembrances of it’s surviving troopers.
CPT Errol D. Alexander, July-Oct 1968
CPT Kenneth G. Carlson, Oct 68-Mar 69
CPT Larry R. Robinson, Mar-Sep 1969
CPT William C. Kaufman, Sep-Nov 1969
CPT Matthias A. Spruill, Nov 69-Feb 70
CPT John L. B. Smith, Feb-May 1970
CPT Robert R. Richards, May-Oct 70
CPT Woodrow W. Waldrop, Oct 70-Apr 71
CPT Edward E. Helton, Apr-Oct 71
Recommendation for a Presidential Unit Citation for Lam Son 719 brought to light by Charles John Wayne Russell.
The following information was provided by Short, Keith . (2000) C COMPANY, 1 st BATTALION, 11 th INFANTRY. Colorado : Roshtiek: from his research manual.
Two operations of the 5th Mech out of the AA’s; with information in regards to A Troop 4/12 Cav activities.
1/C/1-11, 1/5 Infantry Division (Mech)–Quang Tri Province
3/A/2-506th Infantry (Ambl), 3/101st Airborne Division (Ambl)–Thua Thien
Lam Son 719 Significant Events entries in the Combat After Action Report of
the 1/5 Mech.
According to the AA, A/4-12 Cav had 25 WIA’S and no KIA’S during this
28 JAN 71
1/A/4-12, 282217H, YD107694 (4km SW S-4).
The unit reported that a trip flare was detonated approximately 75 meters
north of the NDP. They also received 3-4x rounds of AK-47 fire from the
north. Organic weapons fire was placed on the area, and pink light and
radar were employed, but with negative sightings. The area was swept at
first light with negative results.
29 JAN 71
2/A/4-12, 291200H, YD157687 (4km ESE A-4).
An M551 Sheridan detonated a PM60 mine buried near a tank trail. There was
1x US WIA; the vehicle sustained moderate damage. The unit then received
approximately 10x rounds of AK-47 fire from 100 meters west of their
location. The area was engaged with organic weapons fire and was swept
with negative results. There were negative further friendly casualties.
The resulting crater was 5’x3’x7′.
2/A/4-12, 291430H, YD163700 (5km east A-4)
An M551 Sheridan detonated a PM60 mine buried in a tank trail. There was
1x US WIA; the vehicle sustained moderate damage. The crater was 7’x7’x’5.
12 FEB 71
A/4-12, 121145, YD158698 (3km E A-4).
A M551 hit a PM60 pressure activated mine which was buried in an open field
resulting in a crater which was 4′ by 4′. There were negative friendly
casualties, the vehicle was a combat loss.
3 APR 71
1-77, 032310H, XD820418 (2km N Khe Sanh).
Team received AK-47 fire and grenades from an estimated 6x NVA. Small arms
fire and grenades were returned. A/4-12 reinforced team. Results: 1x US
KIA, 1x US WIA, 2x NVA KIA. Sniper team at 040800H, made a sweep of area
where there was contact resulting in the following items captured: 2x RPG
rounds, 1x RPG cleaning kit, 1x estimated one pound type of explosive, 1x
homemade bangalore torpedo, 1x hunting knife with scabbard, 1x first-aid
packet, 1x NVA pistol belt with fish cakes. There were heavy blood trails
and drag marks throughout the area.
Montana Mustang Significant Events entries in the Combat After Action
Report of the 1/5 Mech.
According to the AA, A/4-12 Cav had 19 WIA’s and 2 KIA’s during this
operation. They were attached to Task Force 1-77 Armor with the 1-77 Armor
20 APR 1971
201025H, YD238460. 2/A/4-12. Track detonated an unknown type
boobytrap–negative casualties or damage. Area was checked with negative
results. No recent area activity.
201230H, YD331445. 3/A/4-12. M551 detonated a 20 pound plastic pressure
activated mine–negative casualties. No recent area activity. 2 vehicles
had passed over mine previously.
1 MAY 1971
011340H, YD290458. 2/A/4-12. M113 hit Arty shell having claymore type
clacker detonator–negative casualties. One roadwheel was blown off.
5 May 1971
051000H, YD249484. 2/A/4-12. M551 hit aluminum type rocket mine blowing
off 2 roadwheels–1 US WIA.
051145H, YD258486. 2/A/4-12 discovered mine made up of 1 RPG and 1 82mm
round. Mine was blown in place.
18 MAY 1971
182040H, YD112719. 2/A/4-12 spotted 3 personnel 50 meters from their
position while on an 8-man ambush and engaged with M16 and M79 fire, the
enemy were engaged with M16 and M79 fire to the South. 4.2″ blocking fire
was used to the West.
19 MAY 1971
192115H, YD131684. CP/A/4-12 took 3 unknown rounds of incoming–1 US WIA.
No counterbattery fire.
23 MAY 1971
230900H, YD100642. A/4-12 took 4x 82mm rounds–negative casualties or
damage. Counterbattery and 81mm fire employed. Scts/1-61 swept area with
301440H, YD263485. A/4-12. M113 set off a TM-41 mine with 4.2″ round on
top of it blowing off 2 road wheels and damaging hull around sprocket. 4 US
031000H, YD355453. A/4-12. Individual set off anti-personnel mine–1 US
WIA. No recent area activity. Area swept with negative results.
040835H, YD304409. With mine detector, 1/A/4-12 detected boobytrapped
155mm round which was blown in place.
041255H, YD361477. 2/A/4-12. Individual set off pressure activated mine
(anti-personnel)–3 US WIA. No recent activity.
7 JUN 1971
070908H, YD232435. 3/A/4-12. M551 set off suspected 155mm/4.2″ round
blowing off 1 roadwheel arm and 2 pads–negative casualties. Area swept
with negative results. No recent area activity.
8 JUN 1971
081400H, YD222456, 2/A/4-12. M113 set off anti-personnel mine wounding
individual on next track–no vehicle damage.
081742H, YD262487. A/4-12. M551 hit unknown type mine which tipped
vehicle on its side with one man trapped inside–2 US WIA.
2 JUL7 1971
021850H, YD137632. A/4-12 took AK-47 and 2 RPGs from unknown size enemy
force and returned organic weapons fire. Negative casualties or damage.
Area swept with negative results.
7 July 1971
071200H, YD095683. A/4-12 found 1 mortar site which they destroyed.