The following audio sample was sent to me by Ed Griffith. Ed was the artillery forward observer for D company 1st Battalion 8th Cavalry 1st Cavalry Division during most of the time I was in country. I had the privilege of working for him for a short time as his radio operator. Ed was kind enough to share the following audio file along with over 100 photos he had taken during his time in Vietnam. All of the rights to the audio and photos belong to Ed Griffith and are not for reproduction or redistribution. Please contact the webmaster with any questions.
The following "wpa" files are playable by Windows Media Player and a number of other programs. You should be able to just click on the link and the appropriate player will open and start the audio. If you have questions or problems, please email me and I will assist you.
These audio files were taped in the Fire Direction Center located on LZ Nguyen Trai. During the month of April of 1970. The activity was a "Contact" fire mission from C Battery 1/21 Field Artillery in support of D company 1st Bn 8th Cav (my unit). Best I can determine this would have been for the fire fight that took place on April 23rd of 1970. (See Story). Ken Streible was our "new" FO RTO at that time. This was his "baptism of fire". The aircraft that "29 Sierra" was in did take hits this day, however it did not go down. One round came up through the seat he was sitting in and was teased a lot about sitting on a flak jacket after that. The audio accurately depicts how hectic it got in the Fire Direction Center with firing a contact mission. The sound of all the radios, the 4 guys in there were monitoring as well as computing the firing data could get pretty nerve wracking. They computed all the data by hand rather than by computer. There was a rudimentary computer available but they could compute it by hand faster than they could input the data necessary to do it by computer.
Call Sign used
"Beater 77 lima" inbound to contact area.
"Get your stuff together" Conversation between "24 Hotel" and "23 Charlie".
"Battery Fire" Sound of each of the guns confirming settings, then the call to "fire" and the sound of the artillery.
"Rolling in" Conversation between "24 Hotel" and "23 Charlie".
"Commanders Initials required" Conversation between "24 Hotel and "23 Charlie" advising that because they would be bringing in fire so close to troops that it would require the "ground commanders" initials for approval.
"Line 2s" Conversation between "29 Sierra" and "23 Charlie" advising of 2 wounded and "24 Hotel" and "23 Charlie" to add 50 meters to next firing.
"End of the Battle" Conversation between "24 Hotel and "23 Charlie" advising the condition of the wounded and the fact that the Medivac helicopter would be going back to refuel and come back to pick up the wounded.
"Calling for ammo" This is the only portion of the audio with Ed Griffiths' voice. He is calling for all off duty personnel to assist.
Thanks again to Ed for the audio!
(Email received from Ed Griffith 1/22/2005)