1st Battalion, 6th Infantry
198th Infantry Brigade
1/6th Home Page
Americal Home Page
The contents of this site are copyrighted and may only be used if authorized by the contributors. Educational facilities and students are welcome to use this information to learn and show others that the combat infantryman is not everything that the movies or the press have made them out to be. We are the Vietnam Veterans. Most of us have been successful in business since returning from our tour in Vietnam. Most of us have families. I am aware that Ray Mendez is currently with Southern California Edison, Gene Arnspiger is the Postmaster in Prescott, Arizona, Dennis Linn has his own business in Decatur, Georgia, (LT) Henry Schutz III is an attorney in Falls Church, Virginia and I am lucky enough to be a retired Engineering VP at the age of 52. So don't believe everything you hear or see! We are not the pot smoking, drug addicted, baby killing psychos depicted in the movies and in the press. We fought an unpopular war with dignity and continue to contribute to society in peace.
Sierra Madre, California
October 29, 2000
Since the creation of this site on October 29, 2000, I have since discovered, through direct contacts by platoon members or their family members, that Gordon Magalis runs his own farm in Shenandoah Valley, Virginia, George Leger operates his own business in Las Vegas, New Mexico and Darrell Kibbee is still residing in Idaho. I will update you on Darrell at a later date. I wish to give credit to my partner in creating this web page, Colonel Wayne Johnston who retired from the Army in June of 1999. Without his help and direction this site would not exist. We bounced ideas off of each other and have created sites that others have enjoyed. As of today, we each have had hits in excess of 30,000. I would also like to thank the wonderful comments by the Kurtenbach family who will always remain a part of my heart since meeting them in 1973.
August 3, 2002
The People - The 3rd Platoon of Bravo Company, 1/6th, 198th, Americal Division was known as the self described "Dirty 3rd". Typical infantry platoons will have one or two personnel rotate in and out each month allowing new troops the benefit of having experienced soldiers around them. In the Spring of 1970, 3rd Platoon hit a mine field that took out most of the platoon. Because of this, the 3rd Platoon was rebuilt with almost all "green" troops. These FNG's (*#% new guys) as we were know then, were Karl Arnold, Gene Arnspiger, Ray Mendez and Ray Tyndall from California, LT Henry Schutz III from Virginia, Dave Underwood and Dan Hawley from Michigan, George Leger from New Mexico, Billy Jackson from Arkansas, Dick Kurtenbach from Nebraska and Dennis Linn from Georgia. In the picture above and in order, Kurtenbach, Tyndall, Mendez, Arnspiger, Arnold, Leger and Underwood.
There were a few transfers who spent a short time with us due to the closing of several other divisions or new guys who transitioned into country during the end of my tour. Some of these people were Gus Prisciandaro from New York, "Kid" Ridgeway, Gordon Magalis from Virginia, Dwight Syverson from North Dakota, Tim Sullens from South Carolina, Darrell Kibbee from Idaho and Tom Schrock from Louisiana.
About 160 of these pictures are from my slide collection and the rest are from negatives that were shared amongst several of us. I have included some of Dennis Linn's collection and will soon add Ray Mendez's collection. If any of my fellow platoon members visit this site and would like to contribute, I would really appreciate it. Email me and I will arrange to have your pictures copied, enhanced and returned at no cost to you. But more importantly, we would love to hear from you.
Batangan Peninsula - Our primary AO (area of operation) during this time was the Batangan Peninsula. It is along the coast, south of Chu Lai and is well known due to the My Lai massacre that took place during 1968 and was investigated in 1969. The Batangan Peninsula has a long history of brutal warfare. The following are a series of pictures of patrols and missions from that area and is intended to keep alive the experience this platoon had. For a thorough story of this period, refer to the 1/6th Home Page that is managed by Colonel Wayne R. Johnston, Ret., my first platoon leader in Vietnam. The web page can be reached at 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry, US Army, Vietnam.
Hill 43 - Located at BS 685 916. Hill 43 was formerly the location of the Headquarters for the legendary 48th Viet Cong Local Force Battalion. In 1965 the area near Hill 43 was the location of Operation Starlite, the first regimental size battle for the US Marines since the Korean War. From August 20, 1970 to September 22, Hill 43 served as a Night Defensive Position (NDP) for the land clearing operations by the 59th Engineering Company. Hill 43 was adjacent to the "Athletic Field", an area that was identified in the June 1970 issue of Playboy magazine as one of the toughest places to stay alive on Earth. I have recently found out that a school mate of mine by the name of Richard Karger was killed there in 1966.
Bravo Company was airlifted by Chinook helicopter from Fire Support Base (FSB) Dottie to Hill 43 to provide support for the Land Clearing Platoon where Hill 43 became a forward support facility for the land clearing efforts. Many "Eagle Flights" and ground patrols originated from this location during our stay there. The full story on Hill 433 can be found on the 1/6th web page at 'They been fighting around here for a long time" - The Legacy of Hill 43.
Fire Support Base Dottie - Located at BS 630 855. FSB Dottie was the Headquarters and Tactical Operations Center (TOC) for the 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry from March 22, 1970 to June 14, 1971. FSB Dottie was also known as LZ Dottie, Hill 102, and Dui Dong De (apparently an alternate pronunciation of the name of the adjacent Ville of Xuan Yen De). For additional information and photos of FSB Dottie, visit the 1/6th web page at Fire Support Base Dottie.
The Beach - The 3rd platoon patrolled the pristine coast line of the Batangan Peninsula. These pictures were part of the story that had a direct affect on Colonel Wayne Johnston. The first two pictures were taken within an hour of the event mentioned in the story, "Noisy Squad pays the Penalty" and "The rest of the story" on the 1/6th web page. The third picture was taken by me while I awaited the 3rd platoon to move behind the enemy. It is hard to believe that such a serene and quit place can become such a bloody and deadly area just minutes later.
Pacification Ville An Thinh (1) - Located at BS 693 805. An Thinh (1) was a pacification village secured by members of the 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry as part of a plan that assisted the South Vietnamese Popular Forces (PF) in defending against Viet Cong attacks. Bravo Company rotated this mission with other Infantry Companies in 1970. A month prior to the TET offensive of 1968, An Thinh (1) was the location of significant fighting where 83 Viet Cong were killed in action and 34 weapons were captured. The first and second picture show the difference 24 hours can make when the monsoon rains come.
The last picture in black and white is our claim to fame. It is picture SC660645 from the National Archives in Washington, DC and has LT Schutz, Underwood, Tyndall, Mendez and an unidentified PF leaving on patrol from An Thinh..
Pacification Ville Van Thien - Located at BS 700 806. One of the larger Combined Unit Pacification Program (CUPP) villages, and the site that was a showcase for visiting U.S. Officials.
Highway 1 - The only paved highway that ran the length of Vietnam.
Chu Lai (The Rear) - The main US military base and secure area.
Dennis Linn's Photo Collection -
Dick "Kurt" Kurtenbach - After serving his country and surviving the Vietnam War, Dick Kurtenbach, while traveling with girlfriend and another couple was killed in an automobile accident shortly after returning home.