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Date Posted: 11:59:52 08/16/10 Mon
Author: Jesse James ( J.J. ) Bell (COOL MO DEE ( Happy) Fochissel on the Diszzel)
Subject: Looking for... ANY ....Ton Son Nhut A.B. Crash Rescue Fire Station Crew members or CES Members ( 1972 - 1972 ) + - 2 Years
First of all I like to say Hello to all the Vietnam Vets ! From the Marines, Army, US Navy, USAF, Merchant Marines,CIA,& to all others that served for that cause !
I'm J. J. Bell, Black Kansas born Soul Man! Joined the USAF in 1969 Sep 3708 MBTS, Flight 1410 T.Sgt Batella Hispiaic or Phillipino. That man was a the neatest man sorta had Robot manuvers marching making turns!
Pressed Starched fatiuges and was Precision all the way! Military creases that could cut ya ! And Staff Sgt. Johnson ( Black) who put the C in Cool and I believed retired after that stint as a Drill Sgt.
One mention to our first Asst Drill Sgt. He was white can't remember his name but he was removed because he was a bit on the mean side! Must of been a Marine D.I. before he joined the Air Force because he was tough as nails and cut you no slack ! I salute you where ever you're at !!!
Well in Feb 72 we landed at Cam Run Bay on a Boeing 707 charter. We had to land at Diego Garcia because of Engine problem and my Military and Vietnam experince would have never happen but we fixed it and was off to Nam !
Once there we where loaded on a Army Green bus and off the road we went on a scary bus ride down to different bases along the way dropping off passengers and picking up as we went along to Ton Son Nhut AB!
I was 19 like most Vietnam vets and went through the in processing like we all had to do! I was met by my sponser a dark skin brother ( black guy) his name was Sgt. Jones
( Jonesman )!
He was the hustler of the squadron ( 377 CES )could find you anything you wanted !
All nubies supposed to go through 2 weeks of Vietnam orientation before going off base downtown Saigon! Jones was from the Dirty South I think ?
Well Jones got me processed in and down town Saigon my first day in Vietnam ! LOL what a blast I had with my welcome to Vietnam Party! Thank you Jones. That was one Cool Ass Brother Never duplicated but often imitated ! Some Special Dapp to ya !
He and all the Fireman that served on A shift and B shift I would like to find ! The crash station was across the ramp from the C-47 Snoopy's ! And to the left of a taxi way was the flying Boxcars C-119 Shadows.
Across from the Fire Station and behind the C-47's was the fortified Arched Revetment hangers with the F4C!
Photo Recon they would fly through the target areas before and after snapping pictures at Supersonic speeds and return the pictures to intell !
We had almost every aircraft on that base C-123, C-130, CIA Birds, F-4, A1E; B-57, OV10 Bronco /OV-11, Sky Raiders, F-100,Helos, and every cilivian aircraft from 707,737,747,DC10,L1011, kc135, C-141, C-7 Caribo c131 Ch54,C-5a Gallexy and many many more from the supporting countries of the Vietnam war!
With planes taking off and landing every 15 to 20 seconds we where busier that Chicago O'Hare Air Port at that time!
Don't and can't forget the Air Vac Flights C-9 and the C-141 at 0445 AM !
Loading up the injuried on strechers and the walking wounded, and the Siliver Bullets, yes the sealed coffins returning to their home town for their last ride home to their families!
We also had the Army's Macvey Anex and a Army Hilo base with Cobras and Huey's and other choppers as well!
We had many alarms for battle damage air craft that where all shot up, I recall the Vietnamese A1E Ski Raiders would always come back shot up!
The big explosion of Napalm after lighting hit it! The Grass Fires, The Helio Pad Chopper Crash! The Flat bed truck full Drop Flares caught on fire that was one hell of a fire!
I remember all the Hot Brake Fires we responded to. Also remembering the Wheel fire on the C 119 Box Car that we had to be careful on because of the brillium in the wheel or the breaks!
The Trailer fire where we found the Full Bird Col. dead !
Also rembering all the Full Spills on them dang C-130's....All the time! The sun beats down on wings and the fuel tank heats and contracts and out comes the overflow!
And always during dinner time or lunch time, ask any Fire Fighter in the World tring to enjoy Breakfast,Lunch or Dinner !!!! LOL
Soon as you sit down to eat off goes the Alarm !
Also not to forget the Food service guys Vietnam and state side! The USAF Cooks that took care of feeding us and one in particular Sgt. Williy Williams ( Big Boy ) ( Black Brother from LA,CA )station at Malmstrom AFB, MT he was our Fire Station Cook!
I salute all the Fire House Cooks Military and Non Military !
One guy Sgt. Lambert White guy from St.Luis the Fire Fighter that drove 18 Wheeler Water Tanker truck to re-service the crash trucks fighting a big crash fire!
He could back that thing up on a dime, he was cool as winter he gave me some great training on that Tanker and I used that skill when I joined the Navy and became a Plane Captain! He may have drove 18 wheelers after the Air Force ??
Also trying to find ( SP ) Dog Handler Security Police Airman Taylor from Tyler Texas ( Black Guy ) small in stature 5'6" ! He spoke seven different languages and spoke fluent Vietnamese! May be a Cop in TX now ??
There was one Staff Sgt. White guy that had done 5 to 6 straight tours of duty in country!
He was a Crew chief on one of the Crash trucks another cool guy that loved Vietnam, some thought he was crazy staying in country so long!
No one knew his story why but all we know is he was one cool ass Staff Sgt! Can't remember his name but everyone knew his story of 7 tours of duty before they made him return to the states!
We had a Black Station Captain he was a Chief Master Sgt. he was like the father figure and never lost his cool another good soul and I wished I could remember his name but he was a great Station Captain / Chief !
And then the other Brother my age Airman Redux I think he was from Louisiana he was a nice guy and we had lots of fun off hours and in the Hooch ( Barracks area ) and the Airman's Club !!!!!! Oh yes the Airman's club!
That was one hell of a great place to keep you on base, but we all had to go down town to ( Soul Alley and Plantation Road )! Hey I didn't name them but it sure sounds like a black thing ! LOL
One mention to the cutie French Vietnamese Girl name( Awn )! Girl where are you at! Our Picture is still on my wall !
To see some pictures of me in the Air Force and Navy days Also me and Awn go to and Cut and Paste my FACE BOOK address !
If it's not published please write me at ( BLKACE1@aol.com ) or write to the web master for the address( http://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=1221166093 )
If anyone thinks they know any of the people in this letter please tell them about this post and or give them my address Please!
If they are no longer here Please write me I would like to know their family members because they will always be in my heart !!!!
Or if you where in country Fire Fighter at any other Crash Rescue Air Force Fire Fighter I'd like to be friends with you as well!
One more thing Oct 71 Ton Son Nhut got attacked (3.) MK122 Rockets and a small ground attack!
I was off Shift and there where some Crazy ass Guys in the barracks that was not taking cover and climbing the Blast walls hollering at the APC that where zipping around the base to secure areas! Any of you guys remember that ?
Seams that after 911 all the Fire Fighter got this big boost in love but us that where Military Fire Fighter never seen that love even in Vietnam! Hell my family didn't seam to know what I did while in the AF. LOL
One mention of an Army award I never got! I was pulling fire guard on a Rocket Storage area that was over grown with elephant grass! The Army was dumping disel fuel on the perimeter !
Well the wind picked up and the fire jumped the birmm and all hell broke a lose and started burning it's way tworads the Rockets which I had to drive the truck to each area and fight the fires trying to engulf the rockets
Well after some intense Fire Fighting I got the fires out!At this point in time the Air Force had turned the controll of many of the base functions to the Vietnames Air Focre and the crew was not up to speed on the fire fighting so I did most the hustling!
Well this Army Captian took my name down and told me I was being put up for a medel.... Well I never got it and but I knew I saved the day that could have went very wrong like that rocket fired off a parked jet on the USS Enterprise!
But this would have been a very bad time if that fire had gotten to them Rockets! Over 30 stored in their racks!
Oh well !
Well I send my love to all that served USAF Fire Fighters / Crash Rescue and don't forget Pedro Crews and the Pilots of that Husky Egg Beater Helio Rescue Chopper !
Love to you all!
Jesse James Bell Sgt.USAF / PR1 USN Retired 1993
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