Mike & H&S Companies
Third Battalion, Fifth Marines
Mike Company Biographies
A - L
Frank J. Ambrose, I was in country 1967 & 1968. As most of you who were in the
bush know exact dates are hard to remember. I got in Nam during the later part of
Operation Union II, was there during operations Cochise, Swift, Hill 43, and Houston. I
remember mostly about an ambush we walked into in February 1968 on Hwy 1 while on a patrol
search and destroy mission south of DaNang. I was an 0331 (machine gunner) at the time. I
remember several of the guys getting killed in that fight and I was wounded my 2nd time.
Every time we tried to look up out of the road side ditch we were in, it was like a sand
blaster blowing in our face from the NVA rounds hitting the ground in front of us. I
remember one NVA very distinctly. He had been shooting an AK-47 at us and threw a grenade
at us. The grenade went off in front of the ditch but I did see him move behind a hut. I
opened up on his feet and bottom half of his legs with my M-60 as that was all I could
see. When he fell forward I nailed him and he went to where ever dead gooks go. In a later
conflict I was wounded my third time in a 8 month period and was medivacked to DaNang and
then to the hospital in Okinawa. From there I was sent to the Philippines. I never was
able to recover any of my gear and/or pictures that I had taken. They were all lost by the
USMC. Even though every thing had my name and military number on them. I still haven't
figured that out! When I got back to the states I got my honorable discharge and went into
law enforcement for 25 years before the scar tissue that had formed around an AK-47 round
in my back started causing serious problems. I had to have surgery and have it removed and
was forced to take early retirement. I now look back at those days and realize how fast we
all grew from young boys to hardened Marines. I can be contacted at email@example.com .
I came into country (Vietnam) in July 1969 and was assigned to the BAS in AnHoa
until my daughter was born in Sept. As soon as I had word of her birth the Chief sent me
to Liberty Bridge to join up with Mike Co. The Senior Corpsman, 'Doc' Tony, placed me with
a 'Doc' Buzzelli to learn the ropes. I spent time with each platoon before becoming the
Senior Corpsman of the company. Lt. Clair and Gunny Washington were in charge of the
company at the time and most of the time I was with the company. I welcomed 'Doc's Toner,
Kemple, Evans, Wicken and a few whom I can not remember their names to the company. I
stayed with the company until March of 1970 at which time I requested Hill 65 for my rear
area time. There I met Doctor Mahoney, 'Doc' Rick, Pee, Fish, Crews, Toner and Lee and
Lynn. I left
Gary Lee Bolen
I trained at Camp Pendleton with M/3/5. I was a machine gunner, 0331. I think we as a unit left for Vietnam Aug. '66 (?) until Aug. '67 (?). It may have been earlier in the year. I'm confused by heavy training in the jungles of Okinawa and Philippines. My first of 18 operations were Deckhouse I, II (which were launched off of a US Navy ship LPH 5-USS Princeton). We stayed ashore after Operation Hastings. My unit never really stayed anywhere very long, although I spent time on separate occasions in Chu Lai, Khe Sahn and a hill top #69 outside Chu Lai. Toward the end (last month) of my tour, they rotated most of what was left of the original I, K, M 3/5 to other companies. Most of L company were killed or wounded. I went to C 1/7 and RR. As I left Vietnam, it looked as though the US Army was taking over Chu Lai air base. I'm looking for others of the early M 3/5 group, specifically Eric Hubbell, Jim Madden, Jacque Cote and Jim Danner.
What an honor to be a part of the Fighting Fifth again! I was in
country from April 68 to May 69. My MOS at the time was Radio Telegraph
I'll tell you a little about my Marine Corps history. I started out as an 0311 and after recruit training my first duty station was Charlie Co. 1/3 at Quang Tri. My second tour as a young Corporal I started out with Golf Co.2/7 until they left Nam. I was then
transferred to Mike Co 3/5 where I was a squad leader. As for which platoon I couldn't tell you until I check my records. I also spent time as an S2 Scout until 3/5 pulled out of Nam I then
transferred to Lima 3/1. When they pulled out I went with them to Pendleton. I was with them when they broke us up and sent us to the winds. Since I
knew how to swim they said Sgt. you are now an Amtracker 1833. I sort of enjoyed Amtracks as it sure beat running across the hills. Then when I reenlisted 4 months later I ended up as a recruiter in Brooklyn, N.Y. I ended up getting out for four years then went back in and retrained
Served as Platoon Commander MCo 3/5, after transferring from !st Force Recon..where I helped Capt. Burns bring back 3 from Mike Co who made the ultimate sacrifice. Would love to hear From Earl Meeks my radio man, Tom Mahlum fellow LT and roommate back in the world as Company Commanders at ITR. Remember "trick or drink?" S/sgt Freddie S Blackman, worlds shortest Texan, Pat Nappi fello Plt Commander and a hot shit, Jim Treadwell plt Commander
The staff in Da Nang assigned me to Mike/3/5 in September 1968 and assured me that "you are being assigned to a fine unit". Upon arriving in An
Hoa, they put us through a week of intense training (sitting stationary while baking in the hot S. Vietnam sun) before assigning us to a rifle team and platoon. The fire team that I was assigned to consisted of 3 very experienced Marines who looked like hell warmed over. They showed me the ropes and told me what to expect. Based on what they said, I concluded that my life was over.
I just returned home with my family from watching the new movie We Were Soldiers. My wife Linda, my two sons Adam and Chris and Chris's wife Joy also went. After I went to bed I could not sleep because I kept thinking of my marine friends ,dead and wounded when I was in Vietnam. I was lying there thinking when I remembered a fellow officer at work told me about the
search engine Google, so I got out of bed and came downstairs to the computer. I tried different times to bring up my old outfit on the computer with negative results. I tried this Google and thanks to your efforts after 36 years of wondering and thinking , there it was M co. 3/5 1st Marine Div. right in front of my face. I got so excited I just couldn't
believe it. There was a picture of Charlie Greene, the last time I seen him is when he got shot in the leg and Cpl. Perez got killed right next to me. I was too dumb to write down my friends names and addresses and left Vietnam with nothing. My Name is Norman D. Carr Jr., Email firstname.lastname@example.org. I served with M. Co 3/5 3rd Plt. since we departed Long Beach by ship in 66. Could you please get Charlie Greene's new email address for me or
forward this one to him. You may post or use in your book anything in this message. I have only two pictures , one is a company picture taken on Camp
Schwab in Okinawa, and another is a small black and white photo taken in the Sampagita Club in a
Subic Bay Naval Base club. In this photo is Doc Braiser and Doc Hunter, Steve Staley , Don Reardon, myself and Charles Greene, we are sitting at a table in our khaki uniforms drinking San Maguil Beer. I'd like to post this picture if I can get a better one made. All these guys signed the back of this picture. I think it was on
Deckhouse I or Nathanhale when Charlie got shot in the leg and Cpl. Perez got killed. We were sweeping towards a village and the gooks opened up on the right from the village. Mike you keep seeing the the word "Hastings" posted by different marines on this site,
believe me, it was terrible. I've been a Police Officer most of my life and I've
seen some bad things happen but not like the events that occurred on "Operation Hastings". The first bad event was we were in a
staggered column going up a creekbed, I was in the 1st squad of the 3rd plt. I was the m-79 man, my squad leader was Sgt. Ortiz , Plt. Sgt was Mickey Finn and a wonderful man Lt. Lindbloom was our Commander, but for some reason I can't remember , he was not on this operation but a nice Lt. by the last name of Marigold took his place. A army spotter plane called the Headhunter spotted NVA in the creek washing clothes directly in front of us. He did not know our company was down there and called in an air strike. I don't known exactly, but that dam HE bomb hit the ground right next to us and the shock of it nearly knocked every one on the ground. The marine in front of me (Collyott) got the back of his leg blown out and a
Cpl Craft a wonderful black marine from Phila. Pa. got hit in the ankle and til this day I don't know if he lost his foot or what. It was a foot long
piece of green shrapnel from the bomb that hit Collyott's leg. I saved this and the members of our plt. all signed it. Collyott was older than us and enlisted because his brother got killed over here. I hope I'm spelling his name right and I wonder where he is now. They grafted skin off both of his ass cheeks to fill the gaping wound. When he was hit I said its your right leg and he said no its my other leg. When he moved the meat fell off his right leg , it was blown out of his left leg and was sticking to his right leg like two pounds of hamburger. The next and most terrible event was 22 July 66 on Hastings. It was sometime in the afternoon when shit hit the fan, it was either 1st or second plt. who was ahead of us in a column made contact with the NVA in fortified positions. The fire fight lasted a while and toward the
evening hours our plt. got called to move up. I'd seen dead marines and NVA while moving up the hill. They told our squad we had to go to the top of the hill to set up a lp (listening post) from the main perimeter for the night. We kept very close intervals because it was thick brush and darkness was setting in. I really think most of us , including me , thought the fighting was over and al the gooks split but it wasn't that way. Posewanti , my close Indian friend and my other close friend Juan
Sanchez were killed instantly right in front of me. There were still NVA dug in and we walked right into them within 30 feet. Coleman , a big tall marine was behind me and Sgt. Ortez and he got shot in the leg. Sgt. Ortez and myself got minor shrapnel wounds from I think a Chi com grenade. At this time I heard some yelling "I see them, I see them"it was Lt. Marigold running up the hill to help us. Everyone was shouting get down, but the NVA shot him in the chest either two or three times . The Lt. fell almost on me and I held my hands on his chest
until the corpsman came. All these years I've never learned of his condition, can you help me find out. I think
SSgt. Mickey Finn also took a load of shrapnel in the arm he was a good marine, I wonder where he is. I was medivaced to the USS Princeton and later had to identify Sanchez and Posewanti and also Bell who was KIA later that night when more NVA hit the
perimeter. I also have a copy of an article about M Co. on Hastings. it is in the Sea Tiger and it is different than the one someone else has posted, it
specifically talks about M. Co. I'll also send a copy. I'm going to send this message to Doc John Braiser, we all loved him , he took care of us. Thank you very much Mike Mcferrin and any one else who made this site possible. Respectfully Submitted , Norman D. Carr Jr. SSgt. USMC serial # 2174248 (1965-1969) PS
Steve Cottrell Mike Company, 3/5 November 1966 - December 1967
probably one of the only people who joined the Marines planning to serve with
Mike Company. My best friend, Bill
Mulcrevy, was six months older than me and joined the Marines when he turned
eighteen. A couple days after I
turned eighteen I was at MCRD in Platoon 266.
I knew that Bill had been assigned to M/3/5 so I requested an 0311 MOS
and hoped I could catch up with him somewhere.
finished ITR Bill had been wounded on Hastings and medevaced back to the States.
I got to see him at Oak Knoll Naval Hospital just before I shipped out.
Even though I couldnít do it with him, I still wanted to serve with the
outfit I had heard so many great things about.
out sometime in late October 1967 from El Toro.
I figured out how units were being assigned and stood in the right lines
to get to the 1st Marine Division, then the 5th Regiment,
then the 3rd Battalion, and begged for Mike Company.
I spent my first night in country with Jim Johnson, a friend of Billís
that I had met when Bill brought him home to visit.
Jim really should have been sent home after being wounded severely on
Hastings. We were assigned a bunker
overlooking the South China Sea. It
must have been at Division or Regimental HQ.
I remember them serving us coffee and sandwiches at around 0200.
That was the last time that happened.
finally got to Mike Company I was assigned to be a company radio operator.
I spent most of my tour two steps behind Skippers J.R. McElroy and J.D.
Murray and got to see first hand what it takes to be a great Company Commander.
the NVA ambushed us on Essex Capt. Fretwell,
Mike Callahan, myself and about fifteen other guys got caught on the
trail below the village we were trying to take. Mike was carrying the company radio and crawled up next to me
trying to get to Capt. Fretwell. As
he did, he was killed by the machine gun fire that was raking the trail.
If he hadnít of been next to me I feel certain I would have got it.
Mike was a great kid and will always be in my heart.
night, within minutes after Mike got hit, the NVA rolled a Chi-Com grenade down,
from the village above us, which landed on my back and the Marine behind me
knocked it off into the rice paddy below us.
I would sure like to know who he was and thank him again for that.
I served with in Mike Company were the best of the best. Iíve never regretted my choice.
Vietnam has been great. I went back
to school when I got home and then became a National Park Ranger.
I worked in Olympic, Grand Teton, Death Valley, Carlsbad Caverns, Lake
Mead, Point Reyes, and then back again to Lake Mead.
In 1985 I left the Park Service and started an environmental consulting
I have been married for almost twenty-five years to a great lady named Nancy (who I met while leading a hike at Lake Mead), we have a beautiful daughter, and a ten month old grandaughter that lights up our life.
I served with subject unit from 6 Sept.66 till 8 Nov.66, med-evad.to Yoko till
1/67 re-assigned to same unit served under Sgt.Barlow till 4/67 re-assigned to Kilo-1 CAC unit at Ky Kuoung vill. by AnTan vill till 10/67.
Frank E. Clark
My name is Frank E. Clark. I was with Mike Co. from Dec. 1966 until Nov. 1967. I was a Sgt. serving as Machine Gun Section Leader, Weapons Plt Sgt. and 2nd Platoon Sgt. I was on Operation DeSoto, Union I, Union II and several others. In Nov. 67 I was transferred to Security Platoon, Hqs. Co., Hqs. Bn. providing security around the Command Bunker at Freedom Hill. I rotated back to the states in Jan 68. SEMPER FI
Estill Fugate 2150750 Mike 3/5 July 1966 I was wounded during the first days of operation hastings so my memories are mostly from camp pendelton, hawaii, okinawa,and the philippines. I remember several names and nearly all the faces of the men in first platoon.Jim Johnson,If you read this I knew you,Hockrack, and Mulcreavy well.I finished my tour on okinawa and returned to quantico.After a few months I returned to rsvn for another tour plus an extension.I was discharged July 1969.
Rocco (Rock) Giambrocco
I served in Mike 3/5 as an o311 and as an S-2 Scout during 68 and 69. I was wounded with them on Hill 1192 in May (9&10) 1968.
Greetings to all my fellow warriors from "Mike"3/5!
I was the second platoon leader from December 1967 to sometime in May 1968, when I received my third Purple Heart. Capt Jim Mitchell was my CO until after Tet 68, when he was relieved by Frank Pacello. Art Miles was one of my squad leaders. Another was Keith Rounsville. We also had a great squad leader named Robinson until he became Capt Pacello's body guard. I also remember "Preacher" who took a round in the helicopter and died while we were landing in a hot LZ during Operation Houston (I think) on Go Noi Island in December 67.
I was in-country 66-67. Our first assignment was called SLF (Special Landing Force). We were a Battalion Landing Team, but assigned to Helicopter Insertions off of the USS Princeton. HMM362 and HMM364 Helicopter Squadrons were assigned on the Princeton with us. My first operation was Operation Nathan Hale, and then we rolled in to Deckhouse I, and then I believe Operation Prairie. I was on the first part of Operation Hastings. I was dinged a couple of times, spent time in Subic Bay in the Hospital, then to Guam and finally back to the States to Great Lakes Naval Hospital in Chicago. This was the closest to my home as I am originally from a suburb of Detroit, Michigan, a little town called Southgate.
I remember the training at Marguerita, the trip from Long Beach on the Renville,
the one night stop in Hawaii. Then on to Okinawa to pick up the Princeton. First OP off of
the Princeton was Nathan Hale. I was shot on that OP and then again on the next OP
I was with Mike 3/5 from March '69 to March '70. My main role my first six months was to walk point. (Remember those times you cussed out the point man for taking you through crap?) Then I became squad leader of Mike2Bravo and my squad waliked point!
My name is Steve Haygood, although I was named Steve Walker when I served in the Marines. I was a member of 1st Plt. Mike 3/5 for almost 8 months, ending when I got hit on Operation Essex Nov. 7, 1967. This was in Antenna Valley, and I was radio operator. We walked into an ambush about 2-3 days out on the operation. The gooks sprung it too soon and only caught 1st platoon. We had a new boot 2nd Lt. incountry 8 days, and he got killed and our plt. grenadier, Bill Little also got killed. Myself and a guy named Nichols (son?) from Detroit was wounded also. I was lucky and on incountry R & R when the company got caught on Operation Swift. I was on the last part of that operation. I was also on Union I, Union II, Adair, Calhoun, Pike, Cochise, Shelbyville, and Swift. (Steve was Sgt. Sullivan's radio man. Brad was on same ops).
Served as Forward Observer with Mighty Mike from March through September 1967. Then served with 3/5 Hdqtrs until January 1968. Was proud to serve with Captain McElroy; Gunny Denny Dinota and a bunch of other great Marines during Operation Union; UnionII; Cochise; Swift; and several smaller operations.
Cpl Jim Johnson 66-67 2126163,. 0311. I can't remember the platoon or squad but next time I'm in the attic I'll look it up and update the roster. I'll also provide VN pictures if you want them. I was an automatic rifleman in a fire team, 3 purple hearts, Operation Hastings, USS Repose, LPH 5 Princeston, malaria, Chu Lai, Monkey Mountain, Pineapple valley, The Rockpile, Phu Bai, remember like it was yesterday. Have found some of the guys in my squad, but I am still looking for Lcpl Hockrack and Cpl William Mulcreavy both severely wounded but survived.
How the hell are all you jar heads after 34 years?? I'm like
the the rest of you guys I can't remember names or faces. If anyone remembers me, please give me an email. I think I
remember Bowers, not sure. I was one Operation DeSoto Union I/II and patched a lot of you grunts up. I remember an ambush I
went on just outside of Hill 69. I carried a 12 gauge shotgun and accidentally shot it off while trying to remove a rock from
under my butt. We had just set in and I had given off our position by discharging the shotgun. The squad leader called in
to get permission to return to base but was refused because we had just got out there. The rest of the night was a little on
edge. Give me a shout. When I can scan my pictures, I will.
My name is Jerry Lomax. I am a proud Confederate Southerner from
Tennessee, who can shoot straight and hit what I aim at. I could hit a tank turret from
900 yards (trouble is, I never saw one. I had to be content with blowing up houses,
snipers, and water buffalo). I went to boot camp at Parris Island beginning in Aug. 1967,
Platoon 1032. I carried a 3.5 rocket launcher which is basically a bazooka from the Korean
War. I was with Medevac Mike 3/5, 1stMarDiv beginning the first of February 1968. As a
matter of fact, as soon as I got in-country, they loaded us on trucks and they told us we
were headed for Hue. For some reason, we turned around on the way, and returned close to
Haivan Pass. I think 3/5 was to guard this area and Highway 1 around Lanco and Truoi
Bridge. I especially remember on one dark, night hump, I was very green and got half of
Mike Company, maybe even the whole battalion, lost in the boonies by going the wrong way
at a split in the trail. It was really hot and muggy, and my glasses fogged up. Nobody
called me a dumbass, even though the short-timers really wanted to. They just told me I've
got to be more careful. From then on, many called me Climax. Why? I was afraid to ask.