Mark Mills -- Carto -- aug/66-aug/67

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Mark Mills -- Carto -- aug/66-aug/67

Post by admin » Sat Mar 08, 2008 6:14 pm

On 2004-10-04 at 12:01:47,
The following information was submitted:
LAST_NAME = mills
submit_by =
TIME = aug/66-aug/67
PLATOON = carto
Nam_Rank = sp4-sp5
Final_Rank =
ACTUALLY_DID = photomaps/montages/ riding shotgun to Cam Rahn Bay
HOMETOWN = santa clara, CA
MOS = map compilation: 812.20/81D30
ETS = 25aug67
BIRTH_DATE = 2oct46
LIVE_NOW = Rolla, MO
PROFESSION = mapping with USGS
EXPERIENCE = Five things stand out:

1. The poker game on the back porch when I mentioned that someone was "sandbagging": I had to explain what I meant. I probably coined the term.

2. The night the boys raided the PX beer dump: We were called out on an alert about 2230. These were usually quick things, over in about 30-45 minutes. this time we were out for 4 hours. About midnight, the clouds came and by 0030, it rained for about a half hour. finally the "all clear" came about 0230. Since from our part of the line to camp went past the beer dump, some of the guys (read: most) felt that we needed some reparations for getting wet and being out so late. All I heard was "Here, Mills, take this" and 6-8 guys handed me their rifles and went into the beer dump. Somebody got a 3/4 truck and drove it in, too. (That's probably how the Vietnamese guard fingered us for it.) As I was going to the orderly room with the weapons, Capt Stanton tried to get the guys to take the beer back, but the sirens from the MPs made him change it to "Hide it and don't get caught with it." So it was a strange sight with a trail of guys hauling in cases of beer at one end of the billet area and Capt Stanton fast-talking the MPs at the other. Rumor had it that there were 20-30 cases of beer buried in the motor pool someplace. The rest were under the tent floor boards.

3. The Major. I can't remember what the Hell his name is, but he was a loser for the 6 months that he was our CO. One time in particular, he was the OD on a night that I had CQ. So what does he do? He heads off into town with a bunch of the other officers and senior NCOs. About midnight, he shows up at the orderly room, drunk as a lord, and quizzes me on the alert procedures. He couldn't even stand up straight and almost passed out before the quiz was over. I told the driver that if the stuff hit the fan that night, wake up Lt __ (his names escapes me, too, but he was the post OD the night before and didn't go to town)first ,and then, the Major. I wanted someone giving orders who knew what was going on.

4. The weekly runs to the trash dump across the bridge and to Group HQ at Cam Rahn Bay: I never had a driver's licence the whole time that I was in the Army, but I was assigned as an assistant driver of a deuce-and-a-half. Where the driver went, the truck went and where the truck went, I went, in that order. There were some adventures on that trip and some adventures that didn't happen because the people at Cam Rahn Bay kept us overnight because we wouldn't get back before dark.

5. Te cancelled trip to Saigon in June67: We had printed some map books for The Brass in Saigon and there was a need for people with security clearances to go as armed guards for the trip. The return trip was a week later, so it meant a week of in-country R&R. Ben Hannebrink, company clerk asked me if I wanted to go. I said "Yes." About a half hour later, Sgt Hardin says, "Mills, you can't go." So I was pulled and Frank "Rags" Ragusa (slotted for the third flight [of three]) was moved up to take my place, with Andy Shimp. The plane never got to Ton Son Nuht; somebody zapped it with a small SAM. Rags had 11 days to go in the Army. 9June67; They are listed on the Viet Nam Memorial Wall on panel 21East, lines 79 and 81, listed alphbetically with the other 12 people on the plane.

AFTER_NAM = Picked up degrees in History (BA, San Jose State '86) and Geology (BS, University of Missouri-Rolla '95), working on MS (Geology)and BS (Education).

Travelling a lot, especially to Canada and Spanish-speaking countries; (my first two hours in Barcelona [2003] were a hoot).

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