U.S. Army's B Company, 504th Military Police Battalion Patrolled Central Highlands Highways During the Vietnam War | HistoryNet

U.S. Army’s B Company, 504th Military Police Battalion Patrolled Central Highlands Highways During the Vietnam War

6/12/2006 • Vietnam

For the men who patrolled such notorious stretches of road as Route 1 from Nha Trang to Bong Son, Route 19 from Qui Nhon to Pleiku and Route 14 from Pleiku to Kontum, the Central Highlands’ dust will forever fill their nostrils and the thick red mud will stubbornly keep pulling them back. Little has been written about these combat highwaymen, but they performed important and often dangerous tasks, such as escorting convoys; keeping a check on military traffic, civilian vehicles and pedestrians; and maintaining route security.

Among the highwaymen on the roads of Vietnam were the ‘Roadrunners’–the nickname given to the U.S. Army’s B Company, 504th Military Police Battalion. The 504th arrived in the Phu Tai Valley, Qui Nhon, on August 31, 1965. While its area of deployment varied during the war, the 504th operated chiefly in the Central Highlands in such areas as Pleiku, Nha Trang, An Khe and Kontum. As it had during World War II, the battalion participated in a large number of campaigns and earned decorations for outstanding service.

The mission of the 504th was to provide direct combat support to the tactical units in I and II Corps Tactical Zones (CTZs), as well as to furnish military police support as directed by the commanding officer of 16th Military Police Group. From 1965 to July 1966, elements of the 504th provided military police support in 12 different locations in I and II CTZs. Supporting the buildup and deployment of three infantry divisions, the battalion was awarded the Meritorious Unit Commendation.

As an Army MP battalion, the 504th gave priority to the support of tactical units, being cited specifically for its efforts during the Dak To fighting in November 1967 and the assistance it provided to the 11th Infantry Brigade in December 1967. During the Tet Offensive in 1968, B Company was involved mainly in sealing off the Pleiku area and defending Camp Schmidt, but it also played an important part in the defense of the MACV (Military Assistance Command, Vietnam) compound in Kontum. Meanwhile, A Company saw considerable engagement in Nha Trang, and elements of C Company were instrumental in assisting two separate convoys that were ambushed in Highway 19 January 30 and 31.

The 504th MP Battalion moved north to Phu Bai in November 1968, to Da Nang in August 1970, and then to Long Binh in 1972 before finally departing Vietnam on July 31. At its height, the battalion (comprising A, B and C companies and headquarters) had 650 men and 22 combined patrols operating on a daily basis. Specific duties included town patrol, the guarding and evacuating of prisoners of war, and highway patrol. The 504th was the only combat MP battalion (except for infantry MPs) operating in Vietnam, and until early 1967, the highway elements were eligible for the Combat Infantry Badge.

The B Company Roadrunners deployed from Phu Tai Valley, Qui Nhon, to Camp Holloway, Pleiku, in September 1965. In December 1968, the Roadrunners moved to Camp Schmidt on the other side of Pleiku City. In contrast to Camp Holloway, the living conditions at Camp Schmidt were luxurious. New two-story buildings replaced the damp and weathered hooches, and even hot-water showers became the norm. Except for one instance when the camp was shelled by 58 rounds of 122mm rockets, the living conditions for B Company were enviable. Occasionally, armored units that had spent a long night on Highway 14 with B Company’s highwaymen would jump at the chance to bivouac with them at Camp Schmidt. For the MPs, it was an equal trade: hot-water showers for the tank crews and the added security of tanks and APCs (armored personnel carriers) around the camp for the Roadrunners.

Like other units in the battalion, B Company included a Headquarters Platoon, a 1st Platoon (town patrol) and a 2nd Platoon (highway patrol). While town patrol was responsible for law and order in Pleiku City, the highway platoon conducted armed patrols on Highway 14 (Pleiku to Kontum) and Highway 19 (Pleiku to the An Khe Pass). Strong loyalties developed within each group because they lived in separate quarters, had different equipment and outlooks, and also faced different risks. While town patrol was tied to the’spit-n-shine’ of working in Pleiku City, those on highway patrol found a totally different kind of war, full of excitement, danger and a sense of freedom.When the 504th MP Battalion was moved north in the latter part of 1968, B Company was relieved from assignment to the 504th and remained in Pleiku, attached to the 93rd MP Battalion. Highway duty continued, and the Roadrunners also became involved in prisoner-of-war evacuation. Then, on February 20, 1970, B Company was dropped from its attachment to the 93rd and reassigned to its parent battalion, with concurrent transfer to Da Nang.

Although the mission of a field army MP battalion in the combat zone had remained constant through the years, Vietnam’s weather and terrain, as well as the nature of the war, dictated the development of new operational techniques–specifically in route reconnaissance, convoy escorts and route security. B Company’s Roadrunners and the other 504th highwaymen helped write the book on these new techniques.

The distance from An Khe to Pleiku on Route 19 is about 55 miles, and B Company controlled most of that area (C Company operated the stretch of road nearest to An Khe). Typical of the Central Highlands, the terrain was mountainous and beautiful … and dangerous.

Convoys ‘kicked out’ daily from Qui Nhon on their way to Pleiku and beyond; trucks from the 8th Transportation Group were loaded with everything from napalm to ice cream, ammo to beer, gasoline to steaks. This supply route was considered to be one of the most crucial and treacherous in Vietnam, perhaps as tough a trip as had ever faced a trucker. Not only did they have to worry about land mines, ambushes and snipers, but the road conditions themselves were a challenge for the most experienced driver.

These morning convoys were most likely to run into trouble in Roadrunner territory, particularly near Mang Yang Pass. The climb through the steep and narrow pass was slow, making convoys an easy target. Although each convoy maintained its own improvised ‘gun-trucks’ (some armed with M-55 quad .50-caliber machine guns) throughout its line of vehicles, Roadrunners would position themselves in the pass, ready to react in case of trouble.

An essential element of escort assistance to these convoys was the liaison and communication capability of the Roadrunners, who could call in air strikes, ‘Dustoffs’ (the nickname for medical evacuation by helicopter), gunships and ground combat reaction (usually armor). They were also tuned to the convoy commander’s frequency, providing a vital communications link throughout a convoy, which might occupy up to 3,000 meters of road space. A favorite Viet Cong target was the 5,000-gallon tanker (often carrying JP-4 aviation fuel) that was hauled by the 359th Transportation Company. A well-placed B-40 rocket would result in a thunderous explosion and devastating fire. In a practice that some looked upon as suicidal, Roadrunners would position themselves within these convoys–an example of their confidence and desire to confront the enemy.

For the most part, though, the Roadrunners actively patrolled the road before, during and after convoys to evaluate conditions, assist disabled truckers and generally handle any problem that came up. In addition to the military traffic, the road was also busy with civilian vehicles–such as buses and lambrettas (motor scooters)–and pedestrians. At times, the highwaymen responded to the occasional collision between the war effort and the people’s effort to pursue their daily existence.

The basic Roadrunner vehicle was a modified quarter-ton truck (gun-jeep). Tops and windshields were removed (the latter in 1968), and armor plating installed. Sandbags were also used on the floorboards to add some protection against mine blasts. Each jeep mounted an M-60 machine gun that could traverse 360 degrees, and the occupants also carried M-16s, M-79 grenade launchers, .45-caliber pistols and various grenades. Occasionally, something exotic (such as M-72 light anti-tank weapons (LAWs) was added to the arsenal, but only when available. It seemed as if the ordinance sergeant would rid himself of aging explosives by outfitting the highwaymen with anything, whether they needed it or not.

In 1967, the patrols also used the infamous Cadillac-Gage V-100 Commando armored car, which required a three-man crew. Although C Company was reported to have had success with it (such as protecting the occupants from a mine explosion), B Company patrols never really took to this strange-looking monster. Because of the constant malfunctioning of the twin .30-caliber machine guns and difficulties with the engine starters, the V-100 (nicknamed ‘coffin on wheels’) never gained the confidence of the Roadrunners. By mid-1968, the use of V-100s was discontinued on B Company’s section of Route 19.

Flak jackets and helmets were required for road patrol, but during the dry season these were often found missing from the uniform. In their place, Roadrunners might don scarves or sunglasses as they sped down the road. Large goggles were supplied and used to keep dust or rain out of the driver’s eyes; they were mandatory if one was to see through a driving rain. Two other unofficial items rounded out the highwayman’s basic equipment–the Roadrunner patch and an ever-present paperback book to help relive the boredom of a long day on the road.

Of course, along Highway 19, there were times when it wasn’t safe to be reading a book. Just about everything in the U.S. arsenal was brought to bear at one time or another on this road. Besides the MPs and their firepower, armored units from black Hawk Firebase (situated between Pleiku and Mang Yang Pass) stationed themselves at key checkpoints.

The road was like a giant snake, winding its way through the red soil of the Highlands, for it seemed to have a life of its own and was constantly changing. Built during the French regime, Colonial Route 19 had seen many historical battles and was the site where the Viet Minh had savagely attacked Mobile Group 100 in June of 1954. Now, involved in yet another war, the road took on a different look. As they had done on Highway 14 from Pleiku to Kontum (a stretch of road also patrolled by Roadrunners), engineers used specially equipped Rome plows to clear the jungle for 100 yards on both sides of the road. And, in almost a year’s time, the two-lane dirt road of Highway 19 was paved.

Both of these improvements contributed to the well-being of the Roadrunners and truckers by making mining and ambushing more difficult for the Viet Cong. The part of the road at Mang Yang Pass had earned the foreboding name ‘Ambush Alley,’ and the defoliant Agent Orange was sprayed there in 1968 to make life more difficult for enemy snipers. Unfortunately, during one of these aerial sprayings, a Roadrunner patrol was also given a dose of the defoliant.

Perhaps the most imaginative change along Highway 19 was the construction of an above-ground pipeline that was being water-tested in July 1968. By September, petroleum products were being pumped more than 100 miles from Qui Nhon to the storage tanks in the Pleiku tank farm. Even though the VC sabotaged these pipes quite often, the success of the pipeline lessened the necessity to line-haul with the 5,000-gallon tankers. It also gave birth to new bases, called pump stations, that were spread out along the road.

The typical patrol (usually eight jeeps) on Highway 19 pulled out of the camp gate each morning at 7:00. Checkpoint 36A was the kickoff point from Pleiku onto Highway 19. The Roadrunners grouped there, waiting for the ‘big boys’ (the tanks and APCs) to clear the road of mines; then, with the words, ‘Highway one niner Echo is now open,’ all the gun-jeeps (except for one that remained at the CP to coordinate the convoys) sped off into the fate of another day. Responsibility on the road was divided: one patrol (two gun-jeeps) took one half of the road, while another patrolled the other half. In charge of everything was another patrol that included the leader (usually a buck sergeant) of all the Roadrunners in the field that day. This patrol would roam over the entire area, reacting to events and assisting where needed. Usually four convoys would make the hazardous trip down Highway 19 (two in each direction) each day.

At the end of each day came a mandatory operation known as ‘the sweep.’ After the last westbound convoy of the day had passed, a Roadrunner patrol would begin the sweep at Checkpoint 27 (the farthest point of responsibility for the Roadrunners) and double back west, over the Mang Yang Pass. At CP 30A (midway point), this patrol would join the rest of the highway patrols and together they would sweep back to Pleiku. If any allied vehicles were found stranded, the returning patrols stayed with them until the problem was fixed, and then escorted them to safety.

While a typical day of patrolling might be long and boring, the danger was always there. Death on the road could come suddenly in the shape of a mine explosion, a sniper’s bullet or a B-40 rocket. Accidents also took a heavy toll and were a constant frustration for the highwaymen. Roadrunners tried to convince themselves that the real targets for NVA (North Vietnamese Army) and VC gunners were the American convoys, and not the men in jeeps. As it turned out, the philosophy was probably correct; in any event, it helped control the fear of being so exposed and relatively small in number.

Although an ambush could involve an intense battle, the most dreaded enemy tactic was the land mine. Even with the daily road clearing operation, Roadrunners had all day to test their luck with mines. The VC used two types, pressure-detonated mines and command-detonated mines. Pressure-detonated mines–those that exploded when enough weight was applied–were most common. The Roadrunners had a philosophy that ‘if you drove fast enough [good drivers could hit 60-plus mph], the mines would blow behind you.’ With the more dangerous command-detonated mines, which had a wire running from the mine to a hiding spot in the jungle, a lone VC could pick his target at will. After destroying his prey, he would vanish, leaving a mess on the road for the highwaymen. Usually first to arrive at any scene, the Roadrunner patrol would radio for a medevac chopper (when someone was still alive) and the ‘big boys’ to help secure the area. The wire would be followed, but the odds of finding anyone home were slim. These types of mines could also be employed to trigger large ambushes, as a way of jamming and isolating a certain section of a convoy column.

The Roadrunners were involved in two major ambushes on Highway 19, one near the end of 1967, the other in late August of 1968. Both were bloody affairs and would forever take their place as central chapters in Roadrunner history.

The ambushers had concealed themselves very close to the road and had allowed many vehicles, including highwaymen, to pass before springing their 1967 ambush. When the violence erupted, the convoy came to a halt and NVA troops swarmed over the stranded trucks. A gun-truck (with a quad .50-caliber machine gun) was on hand, and although the gunner was eventually killed, he burned out all four barrels firing on the attackers before dying. His efforts, along with those of attacking armor and Roadrunners, succeeded in driving the enemy force away, but with severe losses to both sides.

Fortunately for one truck driver, a highwayman had brought his pet dog with him on this day’s patrol. Skeeter, the Roadrunner mascot, was used to loud noise and not afraid to accompany his friend on the road. During the mop-up operations following the ’67 ambush, Skeeter found his way to a driver who was pinned under a destroyed truck and presumed dead. Skeeter licked the soldier’s face, slowly reviving him, and the soldier’s moans eventually alerted Skeeter’s master. For saving that trucker’s life, Skeeter gained a reputation that kept him with B Company despite regulations prohibiting it.

The August 1968 ambush took place at Pump Station Eight, located at the base of the pass on the eastern side (not farm from Checkpoint 27) and the area of many earlier attacks. ‘Roadrunner 3’ and ‘3 Alpha’ were eastbound, escorting a military policeman to CP 27. Also in the patrol was an ARVN counterpart, who was working with B Company. A westbound convoy was making its way toward Pleiku, while an NVA force of about 40 men prepared for the attack. The convoy, the NVA and the Roadrunners met simultaneously.

The attack began with mortars and B-40 rockets, creating a kill zone within the convoy. The lead gun-jeep was too far ahead to provide firepower, but the second Roadrunner jeep was in the thick of the action. As the enemy swarmed over the damaged trucks, the gunner in 3 Alpha opened up with his M-60 and was a vital force in keeping the NVA at bay. When his gun jammed, he grabbed his driver’s M-16 and shot an enemy soldier off a nearby truck.

With the combined firepower of the convoy gun-trucks and the Roadrunners’ gun-jeeps, the attack was finally beaten back. The Americans suffered one killed in action, while the NVA lost eight men (five credited to the Roadrunners), and 12 blood trails were also found. For their actions, the highwaymen were awarded Army Commendation Medals.

B Company was fortunate to suffer as few losses as it did. The Tet Offensive in January 1968 saw the first serious Roadrunner casualty, when an MP from town patrol was wounded by a grenade. Also during Tet, a B Company MP stationed in Kontum survived being hit in the chest by a .50-caliber bullet. The darkest day for B Company came late in ’68 when two men from Headquarters Platoon decided to take their jeep for a joy ride down Highway 19. They came unarmed, and at Checkpoint 30A were ordered to turn around and return to Pleiku. They never made it. A mistake on the road was costly and the two men ran head-on into a civilian bus, dying instantly. Overall, however, Roadrunner casualties were kept to a minimum through skill and a great deal of unexplainable luck.

For many roadrunners, their faith was severely tested on Highway 19; for some it was lost altogether. Still others had their faith restored or reaffirmed by contact with children of the Montagnards, sometimes called the ‘Indians of Vietnam.’ The Montagnard villages along Highway 19 belonged to the Bahnar tribe. Dressed in loin cloths and carrying crossbows, the Montagnards sometimes went about their daily business as if the war was nothing more than a nuisance. There was no real reason for Roadrunners to enter these villages, and contact never would have been made if it hadn’t been for the children.

Checkpoint 30A was a gathering point, not only for MPs but also for Montagnard children from the nearby village. The children (ages 3 to 10) hung around the soldiers, waiting to beg for leftover C-rations that could help feed their families. Friendships grew between the Roadrunners and the children; some of the MPs made strong efforts to learn Bahnar. It was more than just a simple sharing of food. Both the Roadrunners and the children experienced love and trust, elements missing from the war environment.

It soon became evident that sharing Bahnar village life wasn’t enough–the Roadrunners wanted the Montagnard children to get a taste of American life as well. Children were brought back to Camp Schmidt to experience, for the first time, such things as hot water, television and electric lights. After completing their tours and returning Stateside, many highwaymen organized clothes drivers and shipped hundreds of pounds of clothing back to the Highlands. With boxes strapped to the gun-jeeps, patrols would deliver their cargo to a village chief, who was quite fair in distributing the garments. The village would soon have the best-dressed Montagnards in Vietnam. Not all the Roadrunners were caught up in this relationship, of course, but for those Roadrunners who did experience friendship and trust with the Montagnards, the names ‘Vietnam’ and ‘Highway 19’ sometimes conjure up other memories besides those of frustration, fear and failure.


This article was written by Michael Little and originally published in the June 1991 issue of Vietnam Magazine.

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109 Responses to U.S. Army’s B Company, 504th Military Police Battalion Patrolled Central Highlands Highways During the Vietnam War

  1. marv demilio says:

    Nicely written article. I didn’t know about the CIB time element.For three months in late 68, 5 of us in Charlie Co.which was in part moved from AnKhe to Camp Evans near QuangTri, lived in a tent on LZ Nancy and patroled daily and relayed radio messeges from Camp Evans to Quang Tri. I often thought we earned the CIB. We were out in the middle of nowhere, on our own, getting by as we could. Note: Charlie Co out of AnKhe ran convoys to Mang Yang Pass (top) and patrolled halfway to Quin Yong. Those jeeps had no “armor”, but we were loaded for bear. We were also called “Rat Patrol”. We alternated by the week and went out on night ambushes OFF base into the surrounding area. WE were called VC Hunters. Each night we would be briefed by MCV about ARVN units(who occasionally shot at us) and where they were. In September of 68, the “Dirty 30” left with jeeps, weapons and equipment for Camp Evans to start patrols there. The first Air Cav left and the 101st Air Bourne came in and we were attached to them. It was quieter than the Central Highlands. But not as much fun.

    • Don Fife says:

      Do you remember me, Don Fife? March 68- Nov 68. Spent some time in Ankhe but most of my time was in Bong Son. Was not spit & polish MP. Was on that C130 to Quan Tri with “Dirty 30”. Don’t remeber to many names just nick names “Kelly”-“Granny” TheBarber”. Did a litte of all you mention as duties.

      • Marv DeMilio says:

        Fife, I was one of the Dirty 30 and not one of Lt. McDonald’s favorite guys. He sent Greg Pike, Wally Gannon, Sammy Francis, Ken Sawyer and me to L.Z. Nancy for the last three months of 68. On Christmans Day, when he told us we could leave the guns in the tent w/the radio and join the rest of the company at the orphanage, we took the radio and guns to Wonder Beach for the day, got wasted, ran the batteries down and got back just in time to get busted. Actually, Greg got busted. He died a few years ago. Wally in the new vice-president of the 504th association and lives in Chicago.. I think Sam is still in Toledo and I’m in Marquette, Michigan. I have many photos with guys in them I can’t remember the names of. I have one of Nash behind an M-60 w/butterfly handles we traded a case of steaks for. Kelly weeks, and many other guys. We were 19 years old, and it seems like yesterday.

  2. Jimmie Gonzalez says:

    Looking for Donald E Robertson (MP) that was assigned to 41st Civil Affairs Company in Vietnam.

  3. SP4 Daniel R. Leonard says:

    I served with the 504th Co.B in VN all of 1967. I too was a RoadRunner and ran between Bong Son and LZ Dog in the North. I hope to link up with the men of the 504th through this website. I left VN one week before the TET offensive.
    My email address is available at (danoleonard@charter.net). I am a retired police lieutenant from Southern Calif. I was a draftee in 1966, did my MP training at Fort Gordon and returned to civilian life in 1968. My serial number was US56693902. I would very much like to hear from anyone who remembers me. I remember S/SGT Buddy Gray, Cpl. Grandish, SP4 Don “Junior” Falconer, SP4 Tom O’Neil (Statin Island, NY). Be safe and enjoy life my fellow friends.

    • Sp4 Daniel R. Leonard says:

      Just an update: I have a new email of (danoleonard@live.com). I have moved to New York City March 2010. I am currently a concierge/doorman at the Plaza Hotel Private Residences at 1 Central Park South. I am looking for two buddies I spent time with in VN. Joe Krachenfels (Brooklyn,NY) and Tom O’Neil (Staten Island, NY).
      I retired as a Police Lt. in 1998 from the City of West Covina, CA.
      Please feel free to contact me at my email address or thru this format.

  4. Jim Ellis says:

    I served with the 504th in Phu Bai in 1969, escorting 101 convoys into the Ashau Valley, and road patrol from Phu Bai to the Hai Van pass just north of Danang. I was in Phu Bai from April to August 1969, then was reassigned to the 146th MP Platoon in Chu Lai for the rest of my tour. Ran convoys for the Americal Division. Like to hear from any/all of you from the 504th. Really would like to hear from or about Big Dog Roberts out of Chicago.

  5. W.T.Maner says:

    I was with the 504th.MPBat.running convoy escort.for the Americal Div.at Chu Lai.I do not remember ever seeing an armor plated jeep.We also had the gun jeep with the M60.We were coming back from ,I believe hill 29 and when we started through a small village not very far from the front gate I got a call from some one in the convoy that the JP4 tanker had run over a civilian.We pulled over and let the convoy pass with the exception of the tanker.We turned around and went back.When we got there the driver and his partner were still in the truck.About this time an Arvon Lt. came up to me and stated that they were going to keep them until an investigation was completed.I climbed up on the truck to find out what had taken place.The driver told me that and old mamason had thrown a baby in front of the truck and they hit it and the baby was dead.I told them both to stay in the truck and keep those M16s ready.I got down and walked back to the jeep and told my partner to lock and load the M60 and should anything happen to kill every thing in sight.I picked up my M16 and told the arvon Lt. that we were going to wait for a team to come out from Chu Lai and the men in the tanker were going nowhere.I believe a CID came out with several others and took over at which time I was instructed to go on.I am not writing this looking for anyone to think that I was a Rambo or anything else.What I do know is that when I often think of the incident I wonder just how horified those soldiers would have been had I gotten back in the jeep and left with my partner.When I think of this and how it was handled I sleep better.I hope both of the tankers have lived a very prosperous and happy life along with my partner who was a true American.I also would like to say thank you for the men and women in uniform,before and after Viet Nam for keeping our ! country FREE.

    • Wayne Metcalf says:

      I was in C Co. 504th MP Bn.. We were patroling the area in a gun jeep.. I was behind the M60 mg when my plt sgt made a u-turn and it was all I could do to hang on. We went to the scene of an accident where a baby had been run over and mammasan was wailing on the ground ponding the dirt. My Sgt told me to protect the scene.. I don’t remember much about the village or the area. I do remember the scene. I was 19. I remember the truck driver was in shock and he had said the baby was thrown in front of him..it was very confusing and sad.

  6. David Swisher says:

    I was with the 66thm.p, co stationed at Phu Tai. I was on a V-100 and escorted convoys. I still marvel at what we did with such little training and so yong. I had never heard of a V-100 before I got to nam.Some of the situations that we had to take care of while running the roads were pretty nasty, let alone you had to do them in an hostile environment.
    The one thing that I did bring home with me was the wonderful comraderey of the men. I knew that if I or anyone was in an ambush that everyone would do all they could do to help get us out. A wonderful feeling when you are not sure of what you will get into.
    Nice article, I can really relate to.

    • Dave Peters says:

      Hey David,

      I was with the 66thm.p, co stationed at Phu Tai in July, August, September & and ETSed in Oct 68. I spent most of my year at LZ Uplift with the 66th living out of a tent. Wondering when you were there?

      • Dave Peters says:

        Hey David, yes I was there from October 68 until about mid Aug I think. You may have know a lot of the guys I knew Jim Fitzgibbons? Sorry I am about a year getting back to you. I never got an email alert that I know of.

        Anyway, the V-100 come in about two weeks after I was redeployed back to the Phu Tai Valley.

        Don’t know if you saw this but I just found it tonight.

        Service: Army
        Unit Name: 66th Military Police Company
        Date: Apr 26, 2012 – May 01, 2012
        Place: Rivieria Hotel Casino
        City: Las Vegas
        State: NV
        Person to Contact: Clark T. Hopper
        Comments: The 66th MP Company Association will hold its 4th Reunion at Las Vegas, NV. The Association currently has over 60 prior 66th troops as members. If you belonged to the 66th MP Co. while in Vietnam, please join us in Vegas April 26-May 1, 2012. E-mail Clark T. Hopper at cthopper@hotmail.com or call (501) 317-6889.

        Anyway, good to catch up with anyone from those days. Hope all is well.


        FILIAHO !

  7. Nick Lanpher says:

    I,too, served with the 504th MP R9oadrunners. I was the driver of the armored vehicle that lead the convoy along hwy 14. I would love to hear from anyone connected who remembers me or Ray Firestone who was the gunner. Nick Lanpher

  8. Terry Carlson says:

    I was with the 225th Surveillance Airplane Co. out of
    Phu Hiep/Tuy Hoa. I was TDY to Artillery Hill, Pleiku. I rode a “road closing jeep” from An Khe to Mang Yang pass in a driving thunderstorm. The 3 MPs in the jeep took it in stride, handed me off to a V-100 at the top and headed back to An Khe. Those guys had “brass”. The MP’s at the top got me dried off, warmed up and took me back to Artillery Hill. I did’t envy their job at all. The sign at Pleiku showed: Roadrunner Country. 560th MP Co. This was summer, 1970.

  9. William H Oliver SSG says:

    NCOIC Guntruck Cold Sweat 541st Trans 8th Trans Gp Ran roads with you guys thanks for the help An Khe- Pleiku-Dok toe and others 67-68 Later Wildman



  11. rip ratekin says:


    • norman says:


      Smiling Norman here; from Santa Rosa. Do you live in California and do you still surf?


  12. Sandy Lesnick says:

    As a MP in the 218th, on January 29,1968,we became part of the 504th MP’s who were reassigned from Cam Ranh Bay to Nha Trang. The first person I recognized was Rip Ratekin from MP school at Fort Gordon. The day started out like any other until nightfall when all hell broke loose. The guys from the 504th responded with no apprehension and did whatever was needed to fight back the TET attack. It took about 1 month for things to wind down. I saw firsthand that the TET offensive was a turning point for America and we thought we were well on our way to winning the war. I have taken part in the reunion from the 218th MP Company and would invite anyone to view our website..218th Military Police Viet Nam.
    Sandy Lesnick

  13. Jim Brannen says:

    The Roadrunners were fantastic. We at the 4th Inf Div took over the base at An Khe in March 1970. Most of my friends were 4 th MP’s and ran a lot of the Roadrunners and I made the run from An Khe to Qui Nhon several times. I was assigned to DTOC and worked for .Gen. Burke, Kendall, and Walker. Was not an MP. Just had a great clearance.

    I have a couple of photos of all the V-100’s parked on the base, all in a row. And a few photos of my buddy MP’s at the main gate. Wish I could find Jack D’Arcy and Ryan, and maybe Captain Maxwell . And I believe it was Capt Vest from 4th MI. Can’t find him either. Had to pass the ROK camp during the convoys, and that big hairpin turn. Sure beautiful though. I know the Air Cav guys probably hated leaving.

    Everyone felt bad about one guy. V-100’s coming onto the base one afternoon, and he was sitting at the rear position of the V-100. A B-40 rocket hit at the back and killed him. The 3 inch turret glass even broke. A new guy. Been there about 3 months. My friend had previously had that position, but got his own V-100 2 weeks before. He felt quite lucky. Not a whole lot is written about the Central Highlands. A shame. A lot happened from Kontum and Pleiku, and An Khe, Bong Son, and Qui Nhon. I like a lot of others was drafted. Spent Nov 69 to Jan 70 MACV Saigon, then 4 th Inf Div — Div Tac Oper Center (Pleiku and An Khe) until Nov. 70. So many other units with us after May 70-Cambodia..82nd and 173rd included. Great guys.

  14. J R Watkins says:



  15. John Demetrious says:

    Hey JR, I highly respect the (mos) of infantry , but to belittle the men and woman, other than infantry status, who traveled thousand of miles to an unknown land, their life on the line every single day is disgusting.You say we had a easy ride ? Tell that to the family of Jacob Babin and the other men inside their V-100 when an armor piercing round entered their vehicle.

    • manny or Junior Lopez says:

      Hey guy’s let’s keep this simple,bottom line I served I really don’t rememrmer which 504 MP bat I stared with 1st Co B MP BN usarpac Vietnam.Remember hit at THOU SO DOC AIRBASE by 4 sappers which was fine with when they drag body’s .Well that is war…What scared me was a large bug I step 3 time’s and didn’t even bent it’s skin friend from Misssouri John burke siad it was only a cockrouche. will screw that that bug turn around flip me off.I am from San franciscio never saw like.Lets me happy we all made it back.Also was 1st 60 gunner on roadrunner I was always there to back up my brothers. Any one ever here off Group call CONUS WHICH WAS ENG.WHEN I LEFT IN APRIL 72………

      • Sp4 Bobby Thomas/Phu Bai says:

        Bro I’m looking for anyone station @ camp Eagle 101st june ’71-72

    • manny or Junior Lopez says:


  16. John Lepore says:

    I drove for the 563rd heavy truck and would take Hwy 19 from Ahn Khe to Pleiku several times a week. Just to say thanks to the 504 for their escorts on this stretch. Once they escorted me while hauling a 55 ft white live in trailer which kept breaking down. We made it Ok thanks again.

  17. Michael Johnson says:

    I served with C Co 504th 67-68 in AnKhe. Ran highway patrol from AnKhe pass to top of Mang Yiang pass along Hwy 19. We turned over convoys to B Co there. Later was part of the original VC Hunters night patrol led by Sgt “Woody” Woodward. After he DEROS’d I took over that squad. The unit was a mixture of local Popular Forces and our own MP’s. We provided night time security to the (outside the wire)1st Cav hospital in the village, as well as ambush and patrol duties. Left ‘Nam in June 68.

    • Marv DeMilio says:

      Michael, Ditto VC Hunters. I got to AnKhe Feb 68 and went to VC Hunters first week. Ironically, 20 years latter, I became freinds w/Major at MCV who briefed us every night. Alternate weeks I was a Roadrunner. The August 68 ambaush started like he said, but the mortors, count them 8, came down on the LZ Hdqt bunker firtst. We called for air support and went into the ambush. One VC jumped on a running board and ripped the driver’s watch off before shooting into the cab. I ended up patching up several guys after coming back from the elephant grass looking for wounded enemy and our guys. Spooky! We didn’t hear anything about commendation meals. B company had a competition for that. We found that out March 7, 1968 when we inadvertantely, started an ambush on the entire road from Ambush Alley (AnKhe side) to Mang Yang. We lost an EOD Sgt E-7 and his new guy was wounded. My second day as a Roadrunner. All our jeeps going to Mang Yang had 3/16 armor, sand bags, and M-60, M-16s, M-79s and grenades. Those that went down AnKhe Pass had no armor. In Sept the Dirty 30 went to Camp Evans and lost our armor and M-60s. I would have liked to stay in AnKhe. Windy was out Sgt on the VC Hunters after the other guy went back to Texas.

    • Ray Sullivan (Silky) says:

      Can’t remember much about my first or second tour. Have you heard from anyone that was in An Khe in 67-68. Would like to hear from you.

  18. JIMMY JENKINS says:


    • Jim Brannen says:


      If you have an email address you can send me, I can send you some photos of your friends. Jack Darcy was one, and a lot of others at the MP barracks and front gate.. Most from An Khe. Lost the ones I had of Capt. Maxwell –4th MP. You will know the names better than me, It has been a long time. One of the MP guard we had at DTOC, just by the generals house. Betts was another MP you probably knew.

      Jim Brannen

      • Stan Ernest says:

        I was in a member of the 4th MP Company from Jan 1970-Dec 1970. Captain Maxwell was my CO. I would really like to contact him. I would like any photos, contact information and email addresses you may have of guys in the 4th MP Company. I never had contact with any of them after we came home. The 4th Infantry Division came home in Dec 1970 but I had extended, so I went to the 729th MP Batallion to finish my tour, came home in March 1971.

  19. Peter L. Cimelli says:

    I was with the 504th.M.P. Bat. Co.C Detachment 2 in Ankhe, from 66_- 67. Ran convoy patrols on Hwy.19. to the Mangyang Pass. My C.O. was Lt. Pitta. Worked with Randy Norris, Buck McKinney, Bob Eukan, Gary Greaser, Bob Farishon, and Sgt. Edwards amoung others. Started with bare jeeps and an M60 on a post, later we added armor plating. It worked extreemly well (saved my life). Was wounded on Ja. 10th, 1967 in an ambush on Hwy.19 West of AnKhe along with several other M.P.s. I am now a retired Police Officer in N.J.

    • Frank Gagliardi says:

      Pete, Frank here (the wop) I was with C co. 504th from 66-67. I remember when you got wounded. You said that you would picking metal grenade fragments from your arms and legs for years. I was also the M60 machine gunner on my jeep.

      Do you remember Lawson, Hughes, Melnick (killed), Tiny, Frump ? I would like to hear from you. Drop me a line or call.
      863-385-5667. Living in Florida.

      Frank Gagliardi
      5060 Strafford Oaks Dr.
      Sebring, FL. 33875

  20. James Blanton says:

    I was with 544th, Co. A, 2nd batoon in Nah Trang for 3 weeks when TET ’68 hit. We were mobilized prior to the offensive, and were the first sent downtown since we already had our jeeps and weapons. I was driving a “armored” gun jeep (with open top ) downtown past the Generals’ compound and had, what we thought were fellow MP’s, open up on us with machine guns. Unbenown to us the VC had taken the compond.
    With flattened tires on the right side, we managed to made a nearby intersection, where we received sniper fire which kept us penned. Our also green 2nd Lt. happened along and called for PUFF-the MAGIC-DRAGON gun ship, which leveled the villa containing the snipers.
    WELCOME to Viet Nam.
    2 days later we were “bugged-out” to Phu Bai.

  21. Curtis Fratamico says:

    Could I Have the Names of the two men that collieded with the bus
    I was the como Sgt. and know that they were sent out to check point 16 to change out a broken radio, to this day I can’t remember thier names no matter how hard I try, and I really need to know thier names if possible

  22. Spec 4 Fernando Hernandez says:

    Was at camp schmidt 1969 Co B (Roadrunner) 504th. Anyone remember SSgt Peterson or Petersen. Or the names of the 3 guys that hit the land mine in their V100. Sgt Andy Callas (Chicago) if you see this thank you for seeing my folks in LA when u came home. It was a comfort for them. Anyone remember duty sta in BenHet??

    • James Blanton says:

      Sorry, No, I never knew S SGT. Peterson.
      Do you remember S SGT. Morton? He was really a SPEC6 on his 3rd and final tour when he witnessed some troups beside the hwy get hit with mortar fire. He stopped his MP jeep and ran to render aid, and steped on a mine and was killed.This was mid December 1968, and he had like a week left in country.
      We had visited offten since we were both from Texas and sought each other out when we needed to hear a little southern draw occasionally, and both fully intended to go home and stay, out of Nam and the ARMY.
      His family asked for someone to escourt the casket home (which was sometimes granted then), and the privelege was offered to me by the CO, since I was from his state. I had to respectfully decline since I had 3 weeks left in country, and knew I’d never come back. Nothing on heaven or earth could ever have gotten me back to Viet Nam, and I knew it for a fact. We all did our jobs over there, because of our love and pride in the USA.

      The next week the CO had me come to his office for the required “RE-UP” pitch, where he guarenteed me a stripe, $10,000.00, and another tour in Viet Nam. I laughed in his face.When I left, I had been in country a year to the day, flown to Seattle and processed out.

      Would like to hear from anyone who remembers S SGT Morton, from the Houston area. He had lots of wild stories we all enjoyed!

      • Spec 4 Fernando Hernandez says:

        Thanks for your response. Unfortunately no I don’t remember that incident or Morton. Another name pops up in my recollections “Bobby Ratliff”. Did you serve in or around Kontum or Ben Het. I recall 5th Sp Forces being there but can’t remember what we were doing there. Thanks again this is the first time I have been able to share my experiences.

    • ken aalderks says:

      Mr. Hernandez:

      I was with the 504 > 560 as a roadrunner from July ’69 (i entered RVN the week man landed on the moon: thought how we [astronautsand i] were entering foreign situations at the same time, only they didn’t have a rocket attack the first night in their new ‘home’, through Seeptember ’70. After 41 years, i have forgotten many names, faces and places.

      I was on a run that day when the V-100 hit the mine. One of 3 was Dale (??Morevac). Really not sure on the name but i think he was one. He was med-vac’d out with a leg that was bent almost directly opposite from what it should have been. After a long rehab, i kept in touch with him for a bit. He came to see me at my home. Was driving a new (Camaro?). Had entered the Ohio Highway Patrol.

      SSgt Peterson: another forgotten face. If same one, he was maybe getting close to retirement, maybe a little on the heavy side ( a few beers may have added a little to his weight) but thought he was fair with the guys.

      Just found this sight. Amazing what comes racing back post reading some of this.

      • Spec 4 Fernando Hernandez says:

        Ken I have photos from that period I will try to e-mail you. See what you can recall.

  23. joe.h says:

    I served with 221th MP ,Danang from Aug71 to May 72., 1st.CO “B” Happy to hear anyone,WesleyParson, Sgt.Frank Kendall, James “Jungle Jim”Milller, Jerry Gomez…????

  24. Bill Lewis says:

    Hello, Fellow MP’s
    I was with 504th S2/S3 SP4,HQ from August 65 until Sept 66. Via USNS Barrett from Oakland AT. Under “harrassment” fire at basecamp,10 miles outside of Qui Nhon (The Original “Forrest Lawn”), I tore my right knee up and got evac. to 85th EVAC Hospital in Qui Nhon, then on to Clark AFB Hospital and then to Okinawa. After rehab, I was returned to unit. I was Secret/Crypto and made runs into Joint Forces/ARVN Hq in Qui Nhon to get docs that gave me the coord of VC and NVN locations due to conflicts or intel. Had large map that I plotted out these locations, that were passed on to many units in area. Map was used to brief Gen. Westmoreland once.

    I also made several runs to An Khe, and followed up runs to Bong Son, via Ben Cat during operation White Wing and Masher with “Gun-Ho” S2 Captain behiind M60, in Support of First Cav and Marines as well as ARVN Mechanized. This was first big multi unit engagement of II Corp.

    Still live in San Jose, Cal.

  25. Spec 4 Fernando Hernandez says:

    Ken A. Thks for yor response. Sounds like we got a match. SSgt Petersen was everything u mentioned. One night after all units were accounted for in camp, he got drunk, took off in a jeep heading down the highway as night fell. Three of us took off after him in our V-100. Luckily after several miles he came upon a blockade bridge. We caught up wit him and spent the night at Fire Base CrazyHorse (I think) not to sure of name. If u wish contact me at my e-mail hernandezfg@ymail.com look forward to hearing from you

  26. Marv DeMilio says:

    I have to wonder where Michael Little, who is the author of this article, got his information. Some of it is wrong (e.g. only B company ran the road), and some of it is close ot accurate, unless there were two Ambush Alleys. The August ambush is pretty accurate. Co. C had just handed off the convoy to B Co. at the last fire base when we were hit. He missed the March 7th ambush, which essentially started Tet in the Central Highlands. The entire road from AnKhe to Pleiku was lit up for weeks. On that day we ran out of ammo and when we went back for more, got our asses chewed for shooting too much. Later the Cpt wanted to give everyone a bronze star (to keep up with B co.). but the senior guys said no. Just doing our jobs. I was in one of the jeeps that got sprayed w/Agent Orange. We saw the plane coming and knew exactly what they were going to do. The town Mps had kicked a bunch of wing nuts out of Sin City the day before. We got our googles down with our heads and washed off in the creek at the first bridge on our way home. We had to deliver a guy to a villa where some of the B co. guys were living in Bamituit (sp). Wow! Did they have it made. We had heard the guy killed from B was directing trafic and a bus hit him in the middle of the road. (I’m looking for a guy named Wimpy, desk Sgt in Hue late 68. We went to Sydney for R&R. He was from Vegas.) One day before the convoy cammander was on the road, we drove to the top of Mang Yang, about 2 miles off road, to dig up a French soldier (500 buried standing at attention in rows), but we didn’t get deep enough before the Col. got his chopper in the air. Greg Pike was riding with him and warned us.

    • Michael Johnson says:

      The dates of major battles/attacks associated with Tet 1968 in the Central Highlands:
      Jan 30 – Ban Me Thuot, Pleiku, Kontum, Qui Nhon, Nha Trang, Ninh Hoa
      Jan 31 – An Khe, Bong Son, Phan Thiet
      Feb 1 – Dalat

      The last battle of Tet 68 in the highlands (Phan Thiet) was over on Feb 23rd most others being over by Feb 6th.

      For reason known only to the NVA planners they did not hit the towns at An Khe and Bong Son, just the military bases. Luckily it turned out, as we were in the village of An Khe the night of Jan 31 on night patrol. When the attack hit we fell back to the 1st Cav Hospital in the village and set up the best perimeter we could given the lay of the land. Mostly we were observers of the attack on the base that night.

      • Marv DeMilio says:

        Mike, The first night I was at Camp Radcliff, we had incoming over Hong Kong Mtn almost on top of the MP area. We scrabbled for the bunkers. March 6th was my first day on the highway. March 7th we stumbled on an ambush set up just before the blacktop ended. That lit up the entire road to Mang Yang. Many GIs and NVA were killed that day.Then the road calmed down for a few weeks accept for road side bombs and small ambushes. One night the VC Hunters almost ran a GI down at the old bridge in An Khe. He was histerical and had run through the bush from the first bridge on Hwy 19. We were just starting our morning on the road and went to the scene where we found 11 dead GIs from the bridge guard and several girls. One had been tortured badly and dragged 50 yards away. We found one women alive who said she was hiding when the bunker was blown up. We brought her in to CID, but she was later released. We all thought she was VC and told everyone in Sin City.

    • Mick says:

      Marv: I have a friend named Andy Pike, 42 years old, and I’m trying to help him find information on his dad, Greg Pike. All I know is the Pike family is from Massachusetts, Greg Pike was in Vietnam, he’s now dead, and apparently someone at sometime wrote a book that included stories about Greg Pike’s time in the war. If you or anyone you know might know if this could be my friend’s dad and any information or photographs at all, would you please email me and I’ll share the info with my friend Andy Pike. My email is mwadamsmail@yahoo.com.

  27. Michael Johnson says:

    Marv: I remember those(although I don’t recall the GI at the old bridge). I remember us (VC Hunters) picking up a GI past the old bridge down in the village one night. He was scared out of his mind. He was CID trying to infiltrate the local drug traffic and three VC came calling at the mama-san’s and he ran and we got a call to get him. I have no idea how he communicated his situation to base. I think that was while Sgt Woodward was still there because I was on the M-60 when we got him. We looked all over the village trying to re-locate the VC but had no luck. I recall an ambush near “Ambush Alley” that we were in, six VC dead, no Americans; another near the Pump Station with some American casualties from 1st Log. Another near the Firebase near the base of Mang Yang after the ARVN took over the base from 4th Inf, I think it was. There were several ARVN dead but no Americans. Another time, we were on highway patrol and the jeep behind my jeep hit a mine and we had three wounded. That was over toward the An Khe Pass. We ha dot have been at the same places at the same time but unfortunately my memory just can’t pull it together. Sorry.

  28. John G. Day says:

    I was the Platoon Sergeant, Co C, 504th MP Bn, at An Khe 1967/1968 during Tet. Four of my MPs discovered a 105 mm artillery shell in the middle of the road and were present when the EOD men were hit. That was the start of a wild ambush. I had four more MP gun jeeps respond. The 1st Bn., 69th Armor jumped in with two tanks and two M113s full of Infantry. The NVA Company (250 men) were never heard from again. Most are buried near the ambush site.
    Good description of the fight was written by 1LT L. J. Knepp, 69th Armor (Iron Horses) I have numerous pictures of the fight and the two EOD men that were hit and a copy of Lt. Knepp’s description of it all. Would like to hear from anyone there with Co. C. The one thing that troubles me most is SP4 Steven J. Melnick was KIA and his name is not on the wall. (HAVE GUN WILL TRAVEL)

    • Michael Johnson says:

      Johnny Day: I believe that I have a picture of you having some fun in a gun jeep, on an M-60. I recall you well, a damn fine NCO. Hope you are doing well.

      • John G. Day says:

        Mike, would like to hear from you again. reddragon31909@gmail.com

      • Johnnie Day says:

        Michael Johnson, Mike I would like to hear from you again. I have not heard from any of the men in that platoon. That platooin was close and was not happy when they moved Co C, HQ up to An-Khe.

    • chuck trumbo says:

      504th MP co C 1967-1968 ankhe The men of co c in ankhe were like family. The day we lost Steve Melnick was one of the hardest days of my life.
      I took many picture of the guys in Ankhe, but they were all distroyed in a fire. IF anyone has photos of the guys from Ankhe I would love to see them. my Email is poppyoffive@comcast.net.

    • Marv DeMilio says:

      John, We actually had three jeeps on the road that morning. It was my second day on the road, March 7, 68. Our jeep was ent down to the end of the new ashphalt where we encountered sniper fire from the woodline. We called in a tank, and he moved in. Just about that time the two other jeeps called to say they were under fire from a brush pile. A gun ship came in and got immeadiately shot down. We went back up the hill to help. They had found a 105 round on the side of the road and called EOD. An E-7 and a new guy had came out. The E-7 was posing w/105 as the new guy was looking down at a wire leading to the brush pile. A rocket came out of the brush and struck the E-7’s AR-15 blowing it to pieces, tearing apart his side. I was told to go get him. He was gone when I tried to wrap him in a blanket to get him on a medivac. The new guy was shot through the face and survived. Then the entire road exploded to the Pass. We shot off all our M-60 and M-16 ammo and had to go back to base to reload. A tank came in and crushed the brush pile, but i would think by the they wee all dead. We returned in time to support the 183rd as they moved in line to the woods. Later at the LZ Pump station we witnessed a pit full of NVA and VC dead. And many American G.I.s who were killed in the battle. Later that night we went to EOD and drank to the E-_7 who I didn’t know, but will remember for the rest f my life. We ahve pictures start to finish of the day. I spent 18 months at %th Army Hdqts At Ft. Sheridan, I.One day a guy comes in for a parking pass. The SGT of the tank who helped us that day. I remembered him because he had a grease gun and let me shoot it. For the next 6 months we had many ambushes andmartor attacks from our staging area to the bottom of the Pass. Everyother week I had to go out w/VC Hunters. Windy was our squad leader for many of those patrols. He took over when the SGT from Texas went home.

    • Ray Sullivan (Silky) says:

      Would like to hear from you.



  29. John G. Day says:

    Mike it was good to hear from someone who experienced securing that part of QL-19. When I took over our M-60 were well worn out. All I could get was some Huey door guns from the air cav. They had handles on them like the 50 cal. That was me acting goofey on one of those guns while were resting at the bottom of the An Khe pass before starting back up toward An Khe. Thanks for the good comment but it was the men that made me look good. They went out every day and did a great job, the RAs, US.s and NGs together. Most of the time I was far away from them but they would lock horns with Charlie at any point. Hope you are doing well also and hope to hear from you soon. (HAVE GUN WILL TRAVEL)

  30. Rodger Prater says:

    to all my brothers in the 66 mp co, wow 44 years later;found this site

    and im glad I did! served in the 66th dec 1968 to around june 1968,

    thats when they split our company to help out the 127th in qui nhon

    I was with the 66th during tet,was ambushed coming back from

    hospital guard duty at the de long pier,never forget my time with the

    66th would love to make it to the vegas re union any one with more

    information please contact me at rodgeralanprater@yahoo.com

    or call me at 210-896-0342 hope to here from any one in the 66th.

    Rodger Prater

  31. rodger prater says:

    arrived in country dec.1967 assigned to 66th mp co less than a month later all hell broke loose the tet holiday,we were ambushed coming back from hospital security,at the de long pier,lost a good friend that day. need more info on re union. please call me 210-896-0342
    or e-mail me rodgeralanprater@yahoo.com
    rodger prater

  32. rodger prater says:

    see you in vegas

  33. Char Buckley says:

    I am searching for Roger Croft or anyone who knows him or Patrick Dalbec. Both served 1963-???. My brother-in-law was Patrick Dalbec. Pat and my sister were killed in an airplane crash in 1969 and left a year old son. We have very little information on his service years. Their best man at their 1965 wedding was Roger Croft, who served with him as a MP in Vietnam. Thanks for any ifo..

    Char Buckley

  34. Jaclyn Jackson says:

    I am searching for my Dad. I was born in 1964 and never knew who my dad was. All I know is he was stationed in Nha Trang between 1962-1964. I don’t have his name or social, but I know for a fact that he knows about me. My family and I escaped Vietnam in 1975, and made our home in Alaska. I don’t know how to search for someone without a name, a face or social security numbers. Just curious as to who he is, what he looks like and most of all his medical background. I have a heart condition and I’m praying there isn’t anything else that will pop up later. Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated.

  35. Char Buckley says:

    Please help!! Searching for anyone who served or knew Patrick Dalbec ..MP in Vietnam sometime in 1964-1966…or anyone knowing Roger Croft who also served. Please contact me with information on service. Pat and his wife were killed in airplane crash in 1969 leaving a year old son. We have no information on his service. Roger served as best man at wedding in 1965 in Mt. Prospect Illinois. Thank you for any help.

  36. Vernon Casey says:

    I recently lost my uncle Paul D.Pennington. He served with 18th military police in the 504th battalion. He died from agent orange he was there 1967 to 1969. I know he was there during the tet offensive
    if you served with him or knew him i would love to hear from you.
    I know he was very proud of his service with you. he did not talk very
    much about it all i have is his uniform and a few awards. he leaves behind 4 great kids who need to understand what he went through.
    thank you. Vernon Casey

    • Spec 4 Fernando Hernandez says:

      Anyone who served with the 504th in 1969 It would be my pleasure to share photos with you. Send me your e-mail and I will forward.
      E-mail: hernandezfg@ymail.com

    • Frank Gagliardi says:


      My name is Frank Gagliardi. I served with C co. 504th MP Bat.
      in 1966 and ’67. I was shipped home in August of ’67.I was with the 1st
      squad, 1st platoon. I may or may not have known your uncle, depending on the time he arrived in country. The name sounds
      familiar but after so many years, I can’t be sure. I am sorry for your
      loss and a piece of me dies too. Because we were all brothers in arms.


  37. Spec 4 Fernando Hernandez says:

    Vernon I served with Co B 504th MP Bn 1969. Your uncle’s name Pennington sounds familiar, however, my mem
    ory of those times are rather cloudy. If you have a photo of your uncle from 1969 I maybe better able to recall. I will send you some, perhaps you will recognize your uncle.
    My e-mail: hernandezfg@ymail.com

  38. Spec 4 Fernando Hernandez says:

    Vernon, my sympathies to you and all who may have loved your uncle. I served with B company 504th Bn 1969. “Pennington” sounds very familiar, however my memory is a little cloudy of those days when we were young and proud. I was able to save and bring home a lot of photos of the guys in our company. I would be happy to share them with you via e-mail. I don’t know if your uncle is in any of them. But we could get lucky and you may recognize him. At the very least you may get an idea of what your uncle experienced during his tour of duty.
    Fernando G. Hernandez
    E-mail: hernandezfg@ymail.com

    • LAM NGUYEN says:

      Hi, Fernando Hernandez

      I hear your name very familiar, I’m Lam Nguyen has served with B Company 504th Bn.1968-1971 as an ARVN NCO/Interprester as you said that you still hold a lot of photo on this unit, so could you send me some photos that have taken with any ARVN Interpreter of us, thanks
      Email: lamnguyen222@Gmail.com

      Best Regard

      Lam Nguyen

      • Marv DeMilio says:

        Lam! You rode with us most days when we had an interpreter. I spent many days with you in the right front seat when I was on the M-60. I have many picture because I used to carry a small Kodak. Ironically, I would buy rolls of film at the ROC base at the bottom of An Khe Pass. Back in the late 80s a visiting professor from Korea came into my offic to buy insurance. Hiis name was Nguyen. After a year he went back to Korea but sent me Christmas cards for several years. My nick-name was mop-wop.

      • Lam Nguyen says:

        Marv DeMilio
        I regret that I did not visit this site for long time i should not know that you still remember me, I hope you will send me some pictures of mine or any my friend’s interpreter which you have shooted. Pls send them to my email address: lamnguyen222@gmail.come

  39. LAM NGUYEN says:

    Hello, I am very glad to found this website, I was moved to see the images of the young guys came to the highlands Pleiku to help protect my homeland I really pround because I also was one roadrunners I was in 2nd platoon [highway patrol] B Co 504th [68-71] as an ARVN NCO Interprester, I remember those days traveling on the gunjeeps, I remember Mang Yang Pass was named Ambush Alley, I remember the ambush on Highway 19 late August of 1968, I remember the checkpoint 36A which every morning often gathered there to wait for the ‘Big Boy’ I remember Camp Schmidt, I remember CO Capt. Tyner, Capt. Robert E Conner I remember a lot of my friends such as Ssgt William Wilson, Sgt Underwood Spc 4 Boyko, E5 Adam, Spc4 Tully ect… .IT’S NICE TO HEAR SOME ONE STILL REMEMBERS ME

    Lam Nguyen [former Ssgt. ARVN Interprester].
    Email: lamnguyen222@Gmail.com

    • Stan Ernest says:

      I was a member of the 4th MP company, 4th Infantry Division at Pleiku and An Khe from Jan-Dec 1970. Our interpreter was Sergeant Phong. Did you know him? Do you know what happened to him? He was my friend, as well. I would like to contact him. If you have any information please forward it to me.

  40. Char Buckley says:

    I am searching for Roger Croft..he was with the 504th MP..he was on loan to the 545th MP Co at Camp John F. McDermott. I have a picture of him with David Heck, “Ace” Acinger, Buddy Miller..if anyone knows any of these men please contact me. Roger Croft was best man at my sister and brother-in-law’s wedding. My sister and her husband were killed in 1969 (Carolee & Patrick Dalbec) leaving very little information about Patricks servive in Vietnam. Pat Dalbec was an MP in Vietnam around 1964-65. After he and my sister were married in 1965 he was sent to White Sands New Mexico.

  41. Junior Lopez Youngest of 6 Lopez. says:

    No one has mention the special groups of Roadrunner’s with Marine’s and Mp’s.Some when to retrived fallen pilot’s, in Lao’s and Cammodia some drove at night to help keep road’s clean and to drawn out the nva for the arvn’s to engage when the Marine’s were being send home in 1970 to 1974.US patrol’s felt they had no back up.Or I am just thinking what was going on.

    • Fernando Hernandez says:

      Jr Lopez I would be interested to share with you some of my recollections of that campaign. I was for a time working out of BenHet near the borders of Laos and Cambodia with Co. B 504th.

  42. Adriana says:

    I am searching for anyone who served in the war with my uncle, Jessie Morales. This is the only info I have: SGT CO B 8 INF 4 INF DIV.

  43. Thomas Leo Briggs says:

    I was the platoon leader in An Khe from May-Sep 1967. SSG John Day was the platoon sgt. Buck McKiney, Abe Tomlin, Clint Pazdera, Stephen Melnick, Eric Schaefer, Carmine DeSena, Ray Sullivan, Frump, Woodell, Pete LeClair, Chuck Trumbo, Sgt Davenport, Buford Cox and more I can’t remember just now were in the platoon, then. I’d be happy to hear from anyone from that time. briggs@redpeach.net

  44. Robert Evans says:

    I was XO of \B\ Co from Jan-Jun ’66, serving under Capt Ron Sperber. We were the originals from 504, having landed in August ’65 as a battalion at Qui Nhon. It was an amazing first year!

    Anyone know of Capt Sperber or my old bunk mate Lt Russ ___??? (from Texas). I have seen Lt Tom Lake in recent years.

    \B\ Co was an A++ organization from top-to-bottom in those days.

    Bob Evans

  45. Pam Kelsey says:

    Anyone having information on Co B 504th MP BN during 1967-68 and served with PFC Donald Robert Shine MP,CID in Pleiku;
    please contact pamkelsey5@gmail.com.

  46. Dan Leonard says:

    Hey Frank… Nice talking to you this evening from NYC. We were together 46 years ago in Co. C 504 MP BN. I retired from law enforcement in 1997. I moved here to NYC 3 years ago.

    All is well. Here is my contact information:

    Dan Leonard
    301 E. 48th Street Apt. 3D
    New York, NY 10017
    (646) 370-6504

    Best to you and all the folks from the 504 MP BN (1967)

    • John Day says:

      I also served with C Co, 504th at AnKhe as Platoon Sergeant. Lt. Thomas Briggs was the Platoon Leader. I can remember every mile of QL19 all the way to the Mang Yiang. The Montenard Tribe was a great help to us. We had a V100 and the best MPs the Army could muster. I am still very proud of those men. I left 15 June 1968 after Tet.

  47. Gene Petrowski says:

    Bob, E-mail me at gpski@juno.com. I have info on Ron Sperber and Russ McGoodwin. Gene Petrowski

  48. Tony Brandys says:


  49. Jolene O says:

    I am wondering if you ever knew Jerry Perkins? He was in the 504th in 1965. I am his daughter and am looking for any information I can find about his unit. I am not sure which one he was in, just that he was an MP in the 504th Roadrunners.

  50. Bud Syme / Bob Duncan says:

    Hey Rip,

    Bud Syme here!! How ya doin’? Bob and I are sitting here and we thought, I wonder what Rip’s doing these days? The last we heard, you were up in Mendocino Co., somewhere along the coast…which certainly made sense!!

    Anyway, I’m in Santa Rosa and Bob is living in Eureka. We stay in touch and always talk about how cool it would be to see you.

    Hey Rip…Bob here, I’m ready to go NOW…just give me an address! Once I get there, the timing should be just about right for us to hitch-hike to the Winter-Nationals!!

    Let us know what you’re up to, Rip; hope you’re doing well.

    Bud Syme

    Bob Duncan
    707 497-6164

  51. John Lepore says:

    I was with the 8th trans. Group , 563rd heavy truck hauling the Qui Nhon to Pleiku route in 1967 I had the 504th as escorts many times.
    we picked up our trailers from Delong pier and broke every electric line in town on the way out.. The most memorable was when I hauled a house trailer from Qui Nhon to Pleiku. On the leg from Ahn Khe to Pleiku my trailer hitch broke and the MP’s from the 504 stayed with me for a few hours waiting for a welding truck.
    Thanks 504

  52. Mike Little says:

    Thanks John, we always had high respect for what you truckers had to do. Every night, we conducted the \sweep\ of hwy 19 (Mang Yang to Pleiku), and never left a downed truck on the road. We stayed with it till the problem was fixed, or the truck was hauled to a strongpoint. Lots of late nights on that road. You wouldn’t recognize Pleiku today; went back again last March and had a great time. Recommend it. Take care.

  53. Terry Carlson says:

    I was TDY to Artillery Hill, Pleiku, July, 1970. One of our pilots took ground fire and was in the Evac at An Khe. I rode with a convoy from Pleiku to An Khe to see him. By the time I got ready to return, the only thing headed West was the Road Closing jeep. I rode with 3 MP’s who were crazier than me. We drove through a thunderstorm with rain falling so hard we couldn’t see over the hood of the jeep. Got to the top and xfered to a V-100. Soaked and freezing, the great crew of the V-100 got me a towel, warm blanket and some C’s. Took me all the way back to Artillery Hill. I have some pictures of the 504th. Where do I post them?

    • Mike Little says:

      Hi Terry,
      I came home in August of 68, so I wasn’t one of the guys who escorted you. AS for the pictures, you can email them to me or check out the Pleiku MP Association (B Company, 504th) on Facebook or our web site.
      My email is:

  54. Sgt Jim Calkins, C Co 504th says:

    Nice to see some people have remembered us in a favorable fashon. It would be nice to hear from some guys that served during the tet offensive when it turned into a real war. Looking forward to hearing from some of the guys especially now after 46 yrs

  55. Ray Sullivan (Silky) says:

    Sgt. Day

    Would like to hear from you. 717-475-5237

    Was in Nam 67-69.


  56. Sgt.Gerald Gray says:

    I was at Camp Schmidt after moving from Camp Holloway. I remember when the 2 guys from HQ Plt. were. killed when they hit a civilian bus. I was in B Co. 504th MP BN June ’67 to June ’68. I was mostly in Town Patrol but had a Security Plt. (bunker) for a while and filled in sometimes on convoy runs. I would like to hear from anyone who was there during that time. I had a bunch of pictures from my tour but my Ex. took care of that. I would like to obtain duplicates if possible. My E-Mail address is as follows: graysgalaxy@comcast.net
    Would like to hear from 504th people.

    • Dan Leonard says:

      Hey Buddy Gray,
      This is Spec4 Dan Leonard. I served with you in 1967 at LZ Dog on convoy escort between Bong Son and LZ Dog. We both took care of Don (Junior) Falconer along with Sgt. Grandish.

      I returned to California and retired from the West Covina Police Dept.
      just East of Los Angeles in 1998. I celebrated my,70th birthday last week. I believe you used to live in Gary, Indiana if my memory serves me. I am currently retired and living in New York City.

      I would love to hear from you “Sarge”. My email is as follows:


  57. Joe says:

    1 of the 2 Duster squads from pumpstation 8 would go into the Mang Yang everyday on strong point ,, there were 2 positions called strong point 14 and 15– usually a Tank ,Duster or Apc — that strip between the Mang Yang and LZ Action was very hazardous especially pumpstation 8 at the bottom of the Mang Yang and strong point 12 was always ambushed when the convoy passed — big battle was at pumpstion 8 march 21 , 1969 — story on line type in pumpstation 8 ambush — author RJ Rajnor

  58. LEN FULLER says:

    Hi Jim, I served with the 4th MP Co. Aug 68 to May 70. I was in the 1/22 infantry 4th Div. Crushed in the jungle north of Dak in June 68. After I recovered I transferred to the 4th MPs in Aug 68- Road Runners.

  59. steve gray says:

    Looking for information regarding Luther Sowards. We are presenting his widow his medals this months and I thought someone might remember. He was in the Phu Bai region in Jan through May 1970.
    I was at Monkey Mountain from Mar 72 to Feb 73

  60. Gary Clendennen says:


    I was an MP in Qui Nhon in all of 1970; rode up to Pleiku twice as a hitch-hiker; am writing a book.

    Would welcome input.


  61. David McDonell (Sydney) says:

    Dear Bill,
    I have been trying to locate the address of a member of the USA military forces who spent his R&R in Sydney. At the invitation of my sister he stayed with our family for most of that period.
    Your name is very similar so I thought that I would contact you in case you are the Bill Lewis who I am seeking to find to renew friendship.
    You and your buddies did a magnificent job despite being attacked by the left wing of politics and the restrictions imposed by politicians.
    Kind Regards, David McDonell

  62. sandy says:

    I have question , was you station in Quy Nhon Bong Son in Vietnam from 1967-1975? im looking for my dad, he is a soldier GI.

  63. sandy says:

    im looking for my GI American Soldier station in Quy Nhon, Bong Son, during Vietnam war. please email me. my mon name vo kim sa. I was born in quy nhon bong son in 1968 Vietnam. I am amerisian.


  64. Nathan Backhaus says:

    hello all. I am currently in the 66th MP CO and am trying to find out some information about our history. We are trying to find out why we are called the War Eagles. everyone elkse in our Battalion is a Dragon something.

    Any information would be great. Thank you

  65. Juan Alvarado aka Amigo says:

    Served in Pleiku from Dec. 1968 to Jan. 1970. I was town patrol. Just wondering if anyone made friend with the young girl that worked at the gate of Camp Schmidt? I used to call her my little sister. Wondering what became of her?

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