Hist 68

From Stars & Stripes 20 Jun 1968 (provided by Leslie Hines, historian for the Americal Division)

(photo) Troops are dropped into a valley to assess damage from B52 bomber strikes on a 700-bunker North Vietnamese stronghold. At right the troops move through the valley, guided by an OH6A Cayuse helicopter. The valley is located north of Pleiku in the central highlands.

Cavalrymen Ruin 700 NVA Positions
DRAGON MOUNTAIN, Vietnam (Special) – A North Vietnamese complex of about 700 bunkers and foxhole positions was destroyed in a valley north of Pleiku by helicopters and men of the 17th Combat Aviation Group supported by artillery fire and saturation strikes by B52s.
Doubling its record destruction of 350 NVA bunkers near Ban Me Thuot, the 7th Sq. of the 17th Air Cav. Regt. climaxed nearly three months of reconnaissance in the valley by destroying over 200 hastily abandoned bunker and foxhole positions, many of which were still under construction. After nearly a week of concentrated B52 and artillery strikes, the 7/17th “Ruthless Riders” returned to their area of operation with seven Huey “Slicks,” escorted by OH6A “Cayuse” light observation helicopters under fire cover by four gunships. First Lt. Richard A. Levasseur of ST. Paul, Minn., a scout pilot for A Troop commented, “Charlie” must have been right in the middle of his building project when the Big Birds dropped their calling cards. Their positions will require a lot of field expediency before being used again.” The valley area and nearly every other sector of the Central Highlands from Dak To to Ban Me Thuot has been the frequent target for the 7/17th during its past six months of reconnaissance support for the 4th Inf. Div.

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