38. I Did It! By Name Withheld

Well, let's see, it was a warm humid night right near the middle of my tour and things were looking real good at that point, very few bullet holes and had only crashed twice so I felt pretty lucky. As all gunners in the gun platoon we were a proud bunch but this particular day was to rival none other. This particular day I was to get the honor and distinction of actually wounding our pilot. You must remember that I liked the guy and this was totally an accident but it has weighed heavy on me for years. I don't remember his name and have not had the opportunity to apologize but someday we will meet and this burden will be lifted.

While sleeping in the foul smelling scramble hooch that we called home on the flight line one night we got THE CALL. Everyone headed to their ships and prepared for what turned out to be friendlies getting their butts kicked near an unnamed town. Hell they all looked alike to me even in the daytime. I loved to fly but even more so at night because you knew where you stood as far as the enemy tracers were concerned - they were easy to spot targets, I just didn't like them coming too close. Anyway, the pilots were given coordinates for our gun run and, correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't they tell us gunners which way they were going to bank after the run so we could at least squeeze our cheeks?

Well, as we finished the run with our M-60's blazing to the max we take a hard left hand bank with the nose being pulled up some. It caught me by surprise while I was still firing and my weight and the weight of the gun and ammo literally pulled me back inside my door and I popped 2 maybe 3 rounds into the floor behind the right seat sending some shrapnel from the floor into the back of the pilots legs. Well, you would have thought I pinched the poor guys nipples because he screamed like a little girl.

The flight back to Tuy Hoa was quiet as they all thought that they were incoming rounds and heaven forbid outgoing and I never had the heart to tell them. My crew chief knew what happened but we weren't talking so if you're out there still sporting a couple of Band-Aids, I'm sorry, I really am.

Name withheld as I entered the witness protection program soon after the incident.

AM Def Ser Cam

Last modified: Monday June 27th, 2022