Firebase Barbara was located southwest of Saigon. It was located on a canal with access to the Song Vam Co Dong. The only
way in or out was by chopper or boat. It was here that I caught back up to the unit after I returned from "Recondo"
training in Nha Trang. The base had a battery of 105's and some 81 millimeter mortars. We worked from Navy Patrol Boats
most of the time from this base. I remembered a blown up bridge we used as a diving board. It was the end of the line for
the patrol boats. There was an old fort or outpost next to it, with some milita stationed there.
We were supplied by a variety of choppers at this base. The most interesting of which was what we called the "Flying
Crane". It had great carrying capacity. When carrying a full load, the prop wash from one of these could knock a man
off his feet. Especially if he wasn't leaning strong into the wind. This photo wasn't taken at "Barbara", but
this is the only photo of a "Crane" I have. A crane like this once dropped a cargo sling of 105 rounds in the mine
field right next to the perimeter of the base. The pilot got a little confused and set it just over the wire. Everybody jumped
for cover expecting helicopter and pilot parts to rain down on us for hours! Nothing happened. The prop wash of one of these
did detonate some captured chicom mines once. The mines were near the LZ and the big bird set them off while bringing in
supples! Nobody got hurt.
We lived in bunkers like this at Barbara. Since the
base was right next to a canal, we didn't dig bunkers. Steel
culverts with dirt filled sandbags and ammo boxes, served as home. Terrell and Wolf getting out of the sun.
Charlie Hunt and Terrell Ross with an M-1 and AK-47 we took from "Charlie" Christmas day 1968. The VC didn't have
any fun with the LRRPs that day.