Michael Henry 1st Reconnaissance Company

1st tour RVN 1966-1967. Initially assigned as a Communications/Crypto Officer at HQ 3rd MARDIV. Re-assigned as Communications Officer 1st Force Recon, due to requirement for Parachute Qualified officers. Designated as Platoon Leader/Team Leader 1st Platoon, 1st Force Recon. Participated in 3 major operations and led 16 long range patrols into NVA/VC controlled areas. WIA June 1967.

Class: 1965 Degree: BBA Service: USMC

Years of Service: 1965-1972     Years in Vietnam: 1966-1967, 1971

Rank/Position while in Vietnam: lieutenant/Platoon Leader/Patrol Leader 1st Force Reconnaissance Company; Captain/Company Commander C/1/1

Medals/Ribbons related to Vietnam service: Bronze Star Medal w/”V”; Purple Heart Medal; Combat Action Ribbon; Presidential Unit Citation; Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal; Vietnam Service Medal

Are you willing to record an oral history of your time in service? Yes

Your Vietnam Story: 1st tour RVN 1966-1967. Initially assigned as a Communications/Crypto Officer at HQ 3rd MARDIV. Re-assigned as Communications Officer 1st Force Recon, due to requirement for Parachute Qualified officers. Designated as Platoon Leader/Team Leader 1st Platoon, 1st Force Recon. Participated in 3 major operations and led 16 long range patrols into NVA/VC controlled areas. WIA June 1967.

In between RVN tours, 1968-1970, assigned as Communications/Crypto/ Command Center officer at HQ Fleet Marine Force Pacific, Camp Smith Hawaii. USMC authorized and paid for attendance at MBA Program, University of Hawaii; graduated 1970.

2nd tour RVN  1971. Assigned as Commanding Officer Charley Company, 1st Bn., 1st Marine Regiment. Participated in 2 major operations and daily counter-insurgency operations.

Following withdrawal of  1st Bn, 1st Marines back to US, reassigned as Communications Officer 3rd Reconnaissance Bn. in Okinawa. Trained and supported Reconnaissance teams assigned to Marine forces afloat in western Pacific, including off coast of RVN.

Any exceptional or interesting anecdotes or incidents:

In preparation for or in connection with service in RVN attended the following schools/courses: US Army Airborne Course; USMC The Basic School; USMC Communications Officer School; USMC 1st MARDIV Sniper School; USMC Amphibious Reconnaissance Course; US Army  Combat Intelligence Staff Officer Course; USN Jungle Environment Survival Course.

When I departed Quantico in 1966 en-route RVN I received a full battery of inoculations including Gamma Globulin. One week later the medical team at the ladder into the aircraft in California taking me to Okinawa determined that the appropriate entries into my medical record had not been made in Quantico. Over my protests I received another full battery, including Gamma Globulin. One week later departing Okinawa en-route RVN, the medical team planeside could not verify my medical records because they were in my seabag under about 300 other seabags in the hold. Again over my protests/explanations I received the full battery including Gamma Globulin. I never once while in country suffered any of the prevalent diseases, infections, Stomach ailments etc that so many did. I swam in, drank, filthy water, was cut sliced by Elephant grass, bitten by various small creatures, etc. etc but never once suffered from anything. Since then various medical persons are unanimous that this is not a recommended procedure and in fact could be dangerous. In this instance, ignoring the possible post hoc propter hoc fallacy, it worked for me.