Mike Bedwell

1964 – 1966 – with the 450th OMS at Minot AFB, ND., on H-19’s, UH-1F’s.

1966 – at Matagorda Island, TX., on a H-19.

1966 – 1967 at Udorn, Thailand, on CH-3C’s then at NhaTrang AB, South Vietnam as a UH-1F, crew chief/ door gunner.

All others mechanic on flying status. I worked on H-19’s at Minot (450th OMS) in 64 then we replaced them with UH-1F’s. I was on flying status on both ships and got some stick time over the prairie during missile crew changes. Went to Matagorda Island, TX. in late spring 1966 and took care of the single H-19 they had there…actually supported out of Carswell AFB in Ft. Worth. Went to CH-3C school late summer and then off to Udorn, Thailand in November 1966. Transferred to Nha Trang in February 1967 and was crew chief/door gunner till discharged on 29 October 1967. Ten months and 26 days overseas and 3 years 9 months 26 days in service. I wasn’t interested in reup so they gave me an early out. Got a DFC for some action in Laos when an insertion went bad. Also Air Medal, Good Conduct, National Defense Service Medal, VSM, RVCM. I think my last AFSC was AZR 43170. Made E-4 in June 1966. A1C at the time then changed to Sergeant when they thought second and third class was demeaning… We were supposed to go in as a unarmed slick on my DFC mission but the Army guys we were flying with insisted on us having armament….good thing….they loaned us an M-60 and some kinda air cooled .30cal? We ended up putting them to good use. After the second load was on the ground ‘Charly’ cut loose and we had to go back in and make a pickup then go back and pick up an Army crew that got shot down and transport them to the hospital at Da Nang…their helicopter was on fire when it crash landed. Typical hours of boredom followed by moments of shear terror. Never flew without guns again.

Integrity, Honor, and Respect
Some of the best things cannot be bought, they must be earned

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