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Subject: 131st Aviation Company


Author:
Bill Bellinger
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Date Posted: 05:48:15 11/20/07 Tue

When we (85th Maintenance Co.) arrived in Da Nang on New Years Day 1967, I was assigned to MACV quarters in downtown Da Nang. Actually we lived in an old French Villa compound at Number 1 Yen Bai Street. My roommate was an Army Warrant Officer pilot. He was with the 131st Aviation Company which operated out of Hue-Phu Bai. The 131st was a ‘Surveillance Airplane Company’. It was part of the 223rd Aviation BN which was headquartered in Qui Nhon. If you flew Army aviation out of Qui Nhon in 1966-1967 you probably flew with the 223rd. My roommate flew OV-1 Mohawks. I didn’t know much about them other than they were high altitude surveillance craft. Much of what they did was classified and my roommate didn’t say much about it and I was smart enough not to pry. I have since learned that they flew nighttime surveillance using infrared sensors and side looking airborne radar. Many of their missions were flown along the Ho Chi Minh Trail and in Laos. It was very hazardous duty. The 131st lost 11 OV-1s during 1966-67. They had 14 KIAs and 10 WIAs during the same period. There are still 4 MIAs listed from the unit. The pilots would spend their down time when not flying back in Da Nang. It was kind of like an in-country R&R for them. So I didn’t see my roommate over half the time. When I left Vietnam to come home my roommate was up in Hue-Phu Bai flying missions, so I did not get a chance to tell him goodbye. I hope and pray he made it home O.K.

Bill

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Replies:
Subject Author Date
Re: 131st Aviation CompanyTom Wells11:02:28 01/04/12 Wed


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