Thursday, August 20, 2009

Friday night
7 Nov. 1969

I received a package of goodies today. I used up my last bar of safeguard today!

Well, they finally caught up with me and I’m going to have to go to work. I’m the ODO all night tonight, 1800-0600, which means I’ll get little sleep. Plus I’m working for S-4 now, with Russ Fyke, and we have to do an inventory of all the wall lockers in the squadron to see how many are serviceable and how many aren’t. So that’ll take up tomorrow morning. Then I’ll probably fly tomorrow afternoon. But I don’t mind the flying! In fact I love the flying over here (I don’t love being here). There’s no “Mickey mouse” training. It’s all work and we’re all aircrews! There are absolutely no students. It’s really great. The flying is the only thing that makes this place bearable. If I were a grunt, I’d go out of my mind.

The thing that is so disappointing is that we fly a lot and drop a lot of bombs costing a lot of money, but we’re really not doing any good. Take today, I flew a CAS mission and our BDA, bomb damage assessment, was one trail cut and two structures damaged! Big deal, huh! Two airplanes, four people and twenty bombs just to destroy what may have been out-houses for all we know. It’s just costing to much to keep F-4s here for what little good we do. I know all this sounds like blasphemy coming from me, the great supporter of our President, but that’s the way it is. I’m only being realistic.

I’ll be going to the Philippines on the twelfth, if the plans don’t change. Of course I won’t get mail there. I sure would be pleased to find a whole stack of mail waiting for me when I get back. I’m supposed to be down there for four days, I believe.

Russ Fyke and I are tied, at the present, with the most missions this month in the squadron. We have eight each in the first seven days. Of course I’ll fall behind when I go to the Philippines. I have fourteen points now toward my air medal. I’m told that after the first air medal, it all becomes old hat and you don’t even worry about how many points you have.
The weather continues to be cloudy and rainy here. The only good thing about this weather is that it keeps the temperature fairly cool and comfortable.

There are no Marine ground troops in this area. This province is the responsibility of the army’s Americal Division. They use a lot of helicopters to move their troops around this area and the army has a lot of their planes here at Chu Lai. They also have a large, well stocked PX, but it’s so far from our area that we can’t walk to it, and it’s hard to get a ride.

Photo - Headquarters building of VMFA-122, Chu Lai

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