560th Lt Maint Co DS
The 560th Shop Office
The 560th was formed at FT. George G Meade MD in 1966. I was assigned there right
after Tech Supply School FT Belvoir Va. This was springtime 1966. I was one of the
early arrivals. The buildup of personel started very quickly. They were coming in almost
everyday. We were also getting our equiptment. I don't think any of us knew when we first
got there we were destined for Nam. For most of the Summer and Fall we were the Post's
detail company. Anything that came down the pike, the 560th was tasked with it.
burial details, retirement ceromonies for Generals , a 4th of July Parade in Delaware,
guard mount, KP and more KP. Sometime in late fall we got deployment orders for NAM.
Well, our equiptment went to Baltimore and was loaded on a ship months before we left.
In Feb of 1967 the 560th went to Baltimore Airport and got on plane for San Francisco.
We were after landing, bussed to the Troop ship USS General Gordon and we set sail on February 12th.
That date became our rotation date for end of tour. I don't know how many troops there
were total but it was in thousands. Seemed like we had at least a thousand Marines on
there with us. If my memory is right we were on Uncle Sam's cruise ship 20 some days.
The Marines got off in Da Nang and as luck would have it, we were the last
outfit off that ship. We got off on Army Docks in Qui Nhon and were trucked to the 5th
Maintenance area out in Phu Tai.
Anyway somethings are fuzzy in my memory like I said. Maybe one of my old Bro's will
chime in and add to this.
We started getting ready for our mission of Direct Support Maintenance.
I was in Tech Supply and my primary job was truck driver
during my tour. Capt. Whelan was our CO and Top Sgt was 1st Sgt Craig.
There was Sgt. Henry NCO Tech Supply, Spec.Rotruck and De Leon,
Poole, Villet, Champaign, Mc Carthy, Gulley, Moore and others in Tech Supply.
I did some convoying to the LZ English, Bong Son area in support of our Contact teams
working in the field. I remmeber a Task Force Buno we were supporting that had high
priority on everything. I happened to be at LZ English the nite the Ammo and POL dump were blown up.
Real big fireworks show and I still have piece of shrapnel that landed in bed of truck. Stuff went off for
hours and hours. I can't remmeber the month though maybe someone will. We stayed in 5th's area till TET
then we were ordered to Ahn Khe. TET started Jan 31st 1968 and alot of our guys were down to about
2 weeks on tour. I had considered extending to get that 150 day drop on ETS but
TET kinda changed my mind. Anyway the whole outfit went to Ahn Khe short timers and all.
After a day or so they sent the real short guys back to our old area till we rotated
out. We did guard at nite till we left. When 560th went to Ahn Khe, that left 5th to cover
our old guard posts. That left them kinda thin with TET and all going strong and they were
glad to see us take up some slack at night for them. I saw the mountain on other side of
valley pounded quite a few nights with choppers. We never got hit while I was there and I
feel dam lucky. The day we left there was still fighting going on around Qui Nhon and it
was more then a little tense getting to airport. Went to Cam Ranh and flew back to States.
NO PARADES for us. I had 30 days leave and then went to Germany for 10 months
and was promoted to Spec 5. Some of my old crew would be amazed I got out an E 5.
My first year in Army was very rocky to say the least. But I finally got it together and
did my duty. And Glad I did. I Hope SFC Williams is still around he was a good NCO he
never held my past trouble against me. .....................Christopher Barwick