Operating Reports
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31 Jan 1968 31 Oct 1968 31 Jul 1969 30 Apr 1970 30 Apr 1971
30 Apr 1968 31 Jan 1969 31 Oct 1969 31 Jul 1970 31 Oct 1971

APO San Francisco 96269

5 February 1969

SUBJECT:Operational Report of 8th Battalion (175MM/8 Inch) (SP) 4th Artillery for Period Ending 31 January 1969, (RCS CSFOR-65)(R-1)(U)

See Distribution

1. Section 1. Operations: Significant Activities.

a. (U) General

(1) The 8th Battalion, 4th Artillery arrived in the Republic of Vietnam on 12 August 1967. The battalion has been continuously engaged in combat operations since 15 August 1967.

(2) This is the sixth Operational Report submitted by this organization.

(3) Organization Chart (See inclosure 1).

b. Historical Data

(1) Deployment and status of the 8th Battalion, 4th Artillery and its subordinate elements at the beginning of the reporting period ( 1 November 68) were as follows:

HHB/8/4 ArtyYD223587 (Dong Ha)
SVC/8/4 ArtyYD223587 (Dong Ha)
A/8/4ArtyYD210674 (Fire Support Base C-l)
C/8/4 ArtyYD231589 (Dong Ha)
B/8/4 Arty1st Plt/B/8/4 AT985719
(Da Nang Hill 34)
2nd Plt/B/8/4 AT876574
(Da Nang Hill 65)

(2) On 1 November 1968 Battery A was completely non-operational for 23 minutes from 0702 to 0725 due to deadline of guns.

(3) On 1 November 68 at 1145 hours received official notification that all fires into the DMZ would cease at 2100 hours.

(4) On 1 November the Dong Ha Combat Base area received incoming enemy artillery on 4 separate occasions: 0855 hours, 1132 hours, 1306 hours and 2107 hours. No damage or casualties in the battalion.

(5) On 2 and 3 November no rounds were fired by either Battery A or C except for registration.

(6) On 9 November at 1800 hours Battery A at Fire Support Base C-1 (YD210674) received approximately 25 rounds of enemy 82mm mortar rounds resulting in 4 minor WIA and light damage to six vehicles. Combat operations were not affected.

(7) On 9 November at 1800 hours Battery B received one sniper round (small arms) at Da Nang Hill 34 (AT985719). One minor WIA resulted to a perimeter guard. No other action occurred.

(8) On November Battery C was converted from 175mm guns to 8-inch howitzers. The first gun was ready for action and fired on this date. All guns were retubed and operational by I8 November.

(9) On 19 November Battery B moved the two guns of the 2nd Plt back to Da Nang (AT985719) No change in mission.

(10) On 24 November Battery C displaced to Fire Support Base C-2 (YD1164) to support 3d Marine Division recon elements in the southern portion of the DMZ. incoming enemy mortar fire was received within 3 hours after the battery closed the new area. There were no casualties.

(11) On 9 December Battery A displaced from Fire Support Base C-1 (YD210674) to Dong Ha Combat Base (YD231589) and occupied temporary firing positions.

(12) On 10 December Battery A displaced from Dong He Combat Base to Fire Support Base Elliott (Rockpile-XD9854) to support operations of the 3d Marine Division.

(13) On 10 December Battery B displaced 2 guns from Da Nang (Hill 34-AT985719) to An Hoa (AT8647) to support, Operation Taylor Common by, the 1st Marine Division.

(14) On 10 December Battery A incurred one fatality from a vehicle accident st Fire Support Base Elliott (Rockpile-XD9854).

(15) On 20 December at 1415 hours at Fire. Support Base C-2 (YD1164) the Battalion Commander, LTC Harry W. Brown, fired the 50,000th round fired by Battery C since arrival in country. Surveillance indicated an enemy bunker destroyed. (16) On 19 January 69 Major Curtis F. Hoglan assumed command of the battalion from LTC Harry W. Brown.

(17) Between 19 and 27 January the battalion minus Battery B received CMMI inspection from the XXIV Corps CMMI inspection team.

(18) On 28 January LTC Frank M. Kulik Jr. assumed command of the battalion from Major Curtis F. Hoglan.

(19) Missions and rounds fired during the reporting period.

A/8/4459 msn
823 rd
194 msn
1522 rd
210 msn
2247 rd
B/8/4388 msn
1313 rd
430 msn
1638 rd
391 msn
1429 rd
C/8/4142 msn
146 msn
2378 rd
222 msn
2145 rd
Total689 msn
3434 rd
770 msn
5938 rd
823 msn
5821 rd

(20) The cumulative total rounds fired by this battalion since arrival in country through 312400H January is 149,355.

c. (U) Training: The battalion conducted n toto1 of 132 hours of scheduled training or all personnel. In addition, special training programs were conducted for FDC personnel and for cross training within sections.

d. Observation: The two battalion air observers during the reporting period fleer in support of the 12th Marine Regiment and 108th Artillery Group. Air observers control fires of artillery end naval gunfire. The battalion provides one ground forward observer and radio telephone operator to the Mai Loc Special Forces area of operation on a semi-permanent basis.

e. (U) Logistics: Average daily deadline rates for the reporting period.

SP Arty 175MM and 8-Inch34.26%
Other Tracked Vehicles32.2%
Wheeled Vehicles10.9%
FADAC Generators18.6%

f. (U) Civic Action: The battalion was active in a number of projects during the reporting period.

(1) Quang Tri National Prisons Assisting in the rehabilitation of approximately 350 former Viet Cong. Scrap materials are donated to be used in making furniture, kerosene stoves, and household articles.

(2) Two (2) MEDCAPS at Gio Ha and Dong Luong: Initiated during September and August 1968 respectively and treated a total of 2256 patients of which 1287 were during this reporting period.

(3) The Bao Loc School project in Ha Thank Village was suspended on 9 Dec 68 when Battery A displaced from Fire Support Base C-1 (YD210674).

g. Personnel and Administration:

(1) Strength at end of period (31 Jan 69):


(2) Significant Shortages:

31 Jan 69
13Z50 E-8Opn Sgt.10
13B40 E-6Chief of Section167
13E40 E-6FDC CMPT33
13E40 E-5Recon Sgt61
71T20 E-4TAERS Clk52
76S20 E-4PLL Clk5

(3) Casualties: Four minor WIA in Battery A from enemy mortar and one minor WIA in Battery B from a sniper round. One killed not as a result of hostile action in Battery A.

2. Section 2 Lessons Learned: Commander's Observations, Evaluation, and Recommendations:

a. (U) Personnel: None

b. Operations

(1) Splitting the firing elements of heavy artillery batteries.

(a) OBSERVATION: It is not desirable to split the firing elements of a battery.

(b) EVALUATION: Battery B has been required to operate from from separate firing positions for almost the entire period of this report. Initially the positions were close enough to allow a single fire direction center to control a11 the fires, however a later move separated the firing platoons to such an extent as to require operation of two complete fire direction centers. In addition the requirements for increased communications, maintenance and transportation of ammunition severely overloaded the battery.

(c) RECOMMENDATION: It is recommended that when an over riding requirement exists for operating a battery from separate positions the supported or re-inforced unit be taxed for support in the form of additional personnel, communications equipment, and transportation.

(2) Fabrication of temporary gun pads for heavy artillery.

(a) OBSERVATION: A requirement exists for fabrication of temporary gun pads for heavy artillery Pieces for use upon initial occupation of position.

(b) EVALUATION: This unit has experienced numerous difficulties in employment of the 175MM and 8-Inch (SP) weapons due to the nature of the local ground conditions. Even a small amount of rain causes the bearing capacity of the soil to decrease thereby resulting in the gun becoming mired to the extent as to make it extremely difficult to fire. In one unit a wood platform was constructed of 3 inch thick lumber and 3 feet engineer stakes. A sketch of this pad is attached is inclosure 2. This pad has served surprisingly well for a period of approximately one month.

(c) RECOMMENDATION: That heavy units he issued a reserve stock of lumber suitable for such pads and that such pads be built for use as soon as possible after occupation of position.

c. Training: None

d. Intelligence: None

e. Logistics: None

f. Organization: None

g. Survival Escape and Evasion: Negative Report

h. Other: None

2 mcI
5 - HQ. 8th Bn, 4th Arty, ATTN: S3
7 - CO, 108th Arty Gp. ATTN: AVGL-C