Posted on Mar 23, 2021
CWO3 Dennis M.
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Good Morning RallyPoint on this, 23 March 2021, thank you for your service. Here is your history for the Vietnam War on this day 23 March through the years of the war Also today I have the honor of introducing RP members to one (1) Army Medal of Honor recipient, due to actions taken on this day 23 March in Vietnam History... Welcome home all Veterans… and to those that gave their all, …may you rest in peace...!

Today, 23 March in Vietnam War History;

23 March 1951, In the second attack, Giap targets the Mao Khe outpost near Haiphong. But Giap withdraws after being pounded by French naval gunfire and air strikes. 3000 Viet Minh are killed.

23 March 1961, Seven of the eight U.S. crewmen aboard a C-47 aircraft are killed when the Pathet Lao—Laotian Communist insurgents allied with North Vietnam— shoot them down over the Plain of Jars using antiaircraft artillery. Some of the first American casualties in Southeast Asia, the aircraft was an intelligence-gathering plane in route from Laos to Saigon. Army Major Lawrence R. Bailey survives and is subsequently captured, becoming the first American prisoner of war in Southeast Asia since the end of World War II. Bailey is held and interrogated for 17 months. He is released in August 1962, and President John F. Kennedy presents him with the Bronze Star. The guerrillas had been waging a war against the Royal Lao government since 1959. In a television news conference, President John F. Kennedy warned of communist expansion in Laos and said that a cease-fire must precede the start of negotiations to establish a neutral and independent nation. The U.S. decided that henceforth all aircraft operating over Laos would bear Laotian identification markings.

23 March 1966, Massive strikes led by students and Buddhist activists that started after Thieu and Ky removed a popular I Corps commander, General Thi, for allegedly failing to crack down on Buddhist dissidents, spread north to Da Nang and Hue.

23 March 1966, The enemy attacks the 1st ARVN Arm Cav Sqn training center in Binh Duong Province (70 enemy killed, 2 detained, 30 ARVN KIA, 60 ARVN WIA).

23 March 1966 – 25 March 1966, Operation Brownsville, 3rd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division search and destroy operation, III Corps.

23 March 1966 – 26 march 1966, Operation Brunswick, US security and road clearing operation along Route 13, III Corps.

23 March 1966 – 27 March 1966, Operation Mang Ho V, ROKA Capital Division search and destroy operation, Bình Định Province, 341 enemy killed, 17 ROK KIA, 48 ROK WIA.

23 March 1966 – 27 March 1966, Operation Monroe, 2nd Brigade, 1st Infantry Division search and destroy operation, III Corps.

23 March 1967 – 24 March 1967, Two CIDG companies engaged a PAVN company 10 km east of Bù Đốp Camp killing 20 with an estimated 40 killed by airstrikes. On 24 March a CIDG company and a MIKE Force company conducted a heliborne assault on the same area and shortly thereafter became heavily engaged with 2 PAVN battalions. Three CIDG were killed and 13 CIDG/MIKE missing while PAVN losses were 98 killed and a further 170 estimated killed by air strikes.

23 March 1967, Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. called the Vietnam War the biggest obstacle to the civil rights movement.

23 March 1967 – 24 March 1967, Operation Early, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines search and destroy operation, Quảng Nam Province, 5 enemy killed, 3 detained, 2 US WIA.

23 March 1967 – 27 March 1967, Operation Perry, 2nd Battalion, 7th Marines search and destroy operation, Quảng Ngãi Province, 9 detained, 10 US WIA.

23 March 1968 – 7 April 1968, Operation Los Banos, 3rd Brigade, 101st Airborne Division security operation, Biên Hòa Province.

23 March 1968, During a secret meeting in the Philippines, Gen Wheeler informs Gen. Westmoreland that President Johnson will approve only 13,500 additional soldiers out of the original 206,000 requested. Gen. Wheeler also instructs Westmoreland to urge the South Vietnamese to expand their own war effort.

23 March 1969 – 28 March 1969, Operation Hancock Knight II, 3rd Battalion, 506th Airborne Infantry Regiment clear and search operation, Lâm Đồng and Tuyen Muc Provinces.

23 March 1969 – 31 March 1969, Operation Hancock Eagle III, 3rd Battalion, 506th Airborne Infantry Regiment clear and search operation, Bình Thuận Province.

23 March 1969 – 3 April 1969, Operation Montana Mauler, 3rd Marine Division, 1st Brigade, 5th Infantry Division and ARVN 2nd Regiment reconnaissance in force operation, vicinity of Con Thien, Quảng Trị Province, 271 Enemy KIA, 38 US KIA.
Operation Montana Mauler was a United States Army and US Marine Corps operation that took place north of Firebase Fuller, Quảng Trị Province, lasting from 23 March to 3 April 1969.
Background;
In mid-March U.S. intelligence learnt that the People's Army of Vietnam (PAVN) 27th Regiment was moving south of the DMZ in an attempt to cut Route 9. A counter-infiltration operation was planned whereby the 3rd Squadron, 5th Armored Cavalry and the 1st Battalion, 11th Infantry Regiment would patrol the Khe Chua Valley north of Firebase Fuller.
Operation;
The operation commenced on 23 March with the 3/5 Cavalry moving into the Khe Chua Valley meeting limited opposition. On the morning of 24 March the cavalry encountered an estimated battalion-size PAVN force in entrenched positions and pulled back to allow for artillery support; the cavalry called for reinforcements, and Company I, 3rd Battalion, 9th Marines was lifted by helicopter to the scene of the engagement. The following day the cavalry and marines continued patrolling westward into the valley, while Companies A and B, 1/11th Infantry, were deployed by helicopter in the north of the valley. At 03:00 the PAVN attacked the 1/11th Infantry night defensive positions, causing limited damage; at dawn the 1/11th Infantry assaulted in the direction of the PAVN attack, returning to their previous defensive positions at nightfall.

On 27 March the 1/11th Infantry resumed their attack supported by 3/9 Marines, the 1/11th Infantry engaged PAVN in bunkers and fell back to allow for artillery support and Company C, 1/11 Infantry was deployed by helicopter to form a blocking position. The 1/11th Infantry resumed their attack but were hit by PAVN mortar fire and counter-attacks and so withdrew to allow for further artillery and airstrikes before taking the PAVN positions. Total losses for the day were 120 PAVN killed for the loss of 13 U.S. killed, including all of Company B's officers.

On 29 March Company D, 1/11th Infantry overran a PAVN bunker complex, killing 5 PAVN. As Company A advanced west of Company D, it came under attack from an estimated company-size PAVN unit, the day-long battle that followed resulted in 30 PAVN killed.

The Cavalry, Infantry and Marines continued patrolling the Khe Chua Valley for a further 4 days, meeting little resistance.


23 March 1969 – 7 April 1969, Operation Clarksville, 3rd Brigade, 101st Airborne Division security operation, Biên Hòa Province.

23 March 1970 – 24 April 1970, Operation Townsville, 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment/Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment (ANZAC) reconnaissance in force operation, northeast Phước Tuy Province.

23 March 1970, From Peking, Prince Norodom Sihanouk of Cambodia issues a public call for arms to be used against the Lon Nol government in Phnom Penh and requests the establishment of the National United Front of Kampuchea (FUNK) to unite all opposition factions against Lon Nol. North Vietnam, the National Liberation Front (Viet Cong), and the communist Pathet Lao immediately pledged their support to the new organization. Earlier in March, Sihanouk had been overthrown in a bloodless coup led by Cambodian Gen. Lon Nol. Between 1970 and 1975, Lon Nol and his army, the Forces Armees Nationale Khmer (FANK), with U.S. support and military aid, fought the Khmer Rouge and Sihanouk’s supporters for control of Cambodia. During the five years of bitter fighting, approximately 10 percent of Cambodia’s 7 million people died. When the U.S. forces departed South Vietnam in 1973, both the Cambodians and South Vietnamese found themselves fighting the communists alone. Without U.S. support, Lon Nol’s forces succumbed to the communists in April 1975. The victorious Khmer Rouge evacuated Phnom Penh and began reordering Cambodian society, which resulted in a killing spree and the notorious “killing fields.” Eventually, hundreds of thousands of Cambodians were murdered or died from exhaustion, hunger, and disease.

23 March 1971, National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger admitted to President Richard Nixon that Lam Son 719 "comes out as clearly not a success." The failure of Lam Son 719 was called by one scholar "the military turning point of the war."

23 March 1971, The US Congress proposed the 26th Amendment lowering the voting age from 21 to 18. It was ratified on July 1, 1971. A similar law in 1970 had been challenged in court.

23 march 1972, The United States boycotted peace negotiations in Paris with the North Vietnamese, citing the failure of North Vietnam to negotiate seriously.

Today is 23 March 2021
Vietnam War Memorial facts
138 Names on the wall were born on 23 March
139 Names on the wall died on 23 March
245 men earned the Medal Of Honor in the Vietnam war and 160 of those men are listed on the wall

Other wall information/stories/quotes;

“For Michael Lee Farley
Happy Birthday Daddy-
I love you!” -Kimberly 22 March 2021


Vietnam war info of interest, Quotes, etc.

“War is fear cloaked in courage.” William Westmoreland

“The cost of freedom is always high, but Americans have always paid it. And one path we shall never choose, and that is the path of surrender, or submission.”- John F. Kennedy

“No event in American history is more misunderstood than the Vietnam War. It was misreported then, and it is misremembered now.” Richard M. Nixon


Links of interest?

Looking for a Brother or sister you served with? This might help you.
The Viet Nam Veterans Home Page to be quite useful in finding living veterans. They maintain a Lost and Found section http://www.vietvet.org/lostfnd.htm, with listings of people looking for people.

To find information on the availability of U.S. Navy deck logs during the Vietnam war era, check out this link. https://historyhub.history.gov/community/military-records/blog/2020/10/08/update-on-availability-of-vietnam-era-1956-1978-us-navy-deck-logs

Unit Reunions, Homecomings, Gatherings, Newsletters, Etc. can be found at http://www.vietvet.org/unitlist.htm
There are two replica versions of The Vietnam Veterans Memorial that tour the United States regularly. The first of them which is called The Moving Wall, has been traveling the country for almost twenty years. You can find their schedule at http://www.themovingwall.org/
Where can I find the latest information on the status of Prisoners of War and those listed as Missing in Action? A: The Library of Congress maintains POW/MIA information at http://lcweb2.loc.gov/pow/powhome.html


Quotes;

“We stand on the edge of a new frontier.”- John F. Kennedy, on this inauguration as U.S. President, 1961

“When he says sit down, I don't even bother to look for a chair.”- Max McGee, Green Bay Packers receiver, on Coach Lombardi

“It's not whether you get knocked down. It's whether you get up again.”- Vince Lombardi

"No longer must government be allowed to ride roughshod, absorbing the people's wealth, usurping their rights, and crushing their spirit."- President Reagan, November 11, 1982

“He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire.”- Sir Winston Churchill


Congressional Medal of Honor Citations for actions taken in the Vietnam War on this day 23 March in Vietnam War history; Specialist Fourth Class Michael John Fitzmaurice, US Army.


Michael John Fitzmaurice (born March 9, 1950) is a former United States Army soldier and a recipient of the United States military's highest decoration, the Medal of Honor, for his actions during the Vietnam War.

Military career;
Fitzmaurice joined the United States Army from his birth city of Jamestown, North Dakota, and by March 23, 1971 was serving as a specialist four in Troop D, 2nd Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division.

During a firefight on that day, in Khe Sanh, Republic of Vietnam, Fitzmaurice smothered the blast of an enemy-thrown explosive charge with his flak vest and body to protect other soldiers. Seriously wounded and partially blinded by the blast, he then continued to fight the enemy. After his rifle was damaged by a second explosive blast, Fitzmaurice proceeded to acquire another rifle from a Viet Cong sapper, defeating him with his bare hands, and continued to fight, refusing medical evacuation.

Fitzmaurice survived his wounds and was subsequently awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions.

Medal of Honor
AWARDED FOR ACTIONS
DURING Vietnam War
Service: Army
Battalion: Troop D, 2d Squadron
Division: 101st Airborne Division (Airmobile)
GENERAL ORDERS:
Department of the Army, General Orders No. 39 (November 5, 1973)
CITATION:
The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pleasure in presenting the Medal of Honor to Specialist Fourth Class Michael John Fitzmaurice, United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with Troop D, 2d Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division (Airmobile), in action against enemy aggressor forces at Khe Sanh, Republic of Vietnam, on 23 March 1971. Specialist Fourth Class Fitzmaurice and three fellow soldiers were occupying a bunker when a company of North Vietnamese sappers infiltrated the area. At the onset of the attack Specialist Fourth Class Fitzmaurice observed three explosive charges which had been thrown into the bunker by the enemy. Realizing the imminent danger to his comrades, and with complete disregard for his personal safety, he hurled two of the charges out of the bunker. He then threw his flak vest and himself over the remaining charge. By this courageous act he absorbed the blast and shielded his fellow-soldiers. Although suffering from serious multiple wounds and partial loss of sight, he charged out of the bunker, and engaged the enemy until his rifle was damaged by the blast of an enemy hand grenade. While in search of another weapon, Specialist Fourth Class Fitzmaurice encountered and overcame an enemy sapper in hand-to-hand combat. Having obtained another weapon, he returned to his original fighting position and inflicted additional casualties on the attacking enemy. Although seriously wounded, Specialist Fourth Class Fitzmaurice refused to be medically evacuated, preferring to remain at his post. Specialist Fourth Class Fitzmaurice's extraordinary heroism in action at the risk of his life contributed significantly to the successful defense of the position and resulted in saving the lives of a number of his fellow soldiers. These acts of heroism go above and beyond the call of duty, are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service, and reflect great credit on Specialist Fourth Class Fitzmaurice and the United States Army.
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Responses: 22
SPC Randy Z.
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CWO3 Dennis M. Much respect for Specialist Fourth Class Michael John Fitzmaurice, and thank you for the part you play in honoring him and all who served in that place we call the ‘nam. Welcome home Dennis
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MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
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SPC Randy Z. - Amen to that, Dennis!
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MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
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MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
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1SG Fred "SARGE" Bucci - You're authorized a couple, Sarge--just don't make a habit of it! ;-0
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SGT Lorenzo Nieto
SGT Lorenzo Nieto
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Well said
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SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
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Good morning CWO3 Dennis M. , excellent Vietnam War history as always, we're currently at 51 degrees here Chief.
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SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
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1SG Fred "SARGE" Bucci - As my wife always says, count to 10 then let it go.
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SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
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1SG Fred "SARGE" Bucci - That's not good, sounds like when my German temper has hit the short fuse.
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SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
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1SG Fred "SARGE" Bucci - Do you have a wife that's of French and German blood, mine makes me look like a sweet bunny rabbits when all hell breaks loose,
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SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
SGT David A. 'Cowboy' Groth
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1SG Fred "SARGE" Bucci I just say oui to the boss lady.
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MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
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3d Bde., 1st Inf. Div. GIs search a village during Opn. Brownsville in III Corps, 23-25 March 1966.
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CWO3 Dennis M.
CWO3 Dennis M.
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PO2 David Dunlap - Me too then I would drive right into NYC and not worry about traffic, or parking for that matter!
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SSG Bill McCoy
SSG Bill McCoy
1 mo
MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D. - When in Vietnam, we knew we could relax a bit anytime ROK forces were nearby. Those guys took war to a level that the Viets tried not to engage them because, for ROK's, "payback was truly a b**ch!"
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MAJ Dale E. Wilson, Ph.D.
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CWO3 Dennis M.
CWO3 Dennis M.
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SSG Bill McCoy - I have heard that from many a Vietnam vet!
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