After Action Report for River Assault Squadron 11

16 JUNE 1968


1. Concept of operation directed to lift the Vietnamese 999th Regional force Co. and insert them at 0800: at YE038779 and backload them at YE0387791.

2. Directed to lift US-VN Commandos and insert them at 0832 at YE037792.

3. 0815: Entered Rach Ong Keo with LHFT overhead for cover; commenced reconning the East and West banks with .30 caliber,; .50 caliber, 20MM, 40MM, and 40MM Grenade.

4. 0820: Began receiving automatic weapons fire from the West bank and rocket fire from the East Bank at approximately YS039774. M-91-1, A-111.5, A-111-4 B-40/RPG-7 rounds and several other large rounds were observed hitting the water throughout the column. T-131-8 was struck with small arms, 0830: The Vietnamese 999th Regional Forces company was inserted at YS038782. The troops met immediate resistance at a base camp by a reported force of two companies. The Viet Cong moved to the East and the VN troops commenced their sweeps North along the Rach Ong Keo. TE remained beached at the insertion point and continued to receive sporadic sniper fire. LHFT continued to work over the East and West bank. 0900: Medevac helo arrived to pick up five personnel (3 US, 2VN) wounded during the ambush and the initial insertion.

0930: Retracted and underway to inset US-VN commandos.

0940: Beached and inserted US-VN commandos at approximately YE037791. Commandos met immediate resistance and got a body count of three Viet Cong five meters from insertion point.

0945-1100: Remained beached at YE037791 units continued to receive sniper fire; LHFT were called in to work over the Southwest bank. T-131-8 beached farther to the South reported seeing Viet Cong moving in the brush YS036790; LHFT was called in on reported sighting-results of strike unknown but no other movement noted. TE fired periodic M-79 and M-19 to the opposite bank.

1100: TE backloaded both regional forces company at approximately YS038791.

1115: TE backloaded US-VN commandos at approximately YS037792.

1130: Medevac helo arrived to pick up two army personnel. (1 US 1 VN)

1200: TE retracted and commenced moving South on Rach Ong Keo to clear way for fixed-wing air strike. LHFT reconned both East and West banks of stream in from of column.

1215-1300: TE came under heavy ambush fire at approximately YS035755. Fire was emitting from both banks and consisted of B-40 rockets, recoilless rifles, heavy automatic weapons and small arms. TE immediately returned fire but was unable to surpress the fire and was unable to beach at approximately YS36780 as previously planned. TE continued South on Rach Ong Keo and continued to receive heavy fire from all weapons. LHFT continued to work over the East and West banks with rocket and mini guns. LHFT stayed in extremely tight over the boat column attempting to surpress incoming fire. Heave automatic fire prevented TE from beaching at YS038761 and column continued West on Song Dong Tranh to approximately YS01775. It should be noted that throughout this ambush and particularly at YS038761 and YS035755 enemy .50 caliber machine guns were heard and tracers seen.

1330: Medevac helo arrived to pickup three personnel (VN)

1415: Air strikes completed, commenced reinsertion of troops. No contact was made.

5. Results noted in CTG 116.4 161300Z Jun 68:

a. 26 structures burned, numerous bunkers, 500lbs. Rice, 1 sampan destroyed by regional force company 999, 2 US claymores, 1 SKS-50, 1 M-26 Grenade, 3 sets of web gear, assortment of medicine and vitamins, 1 kilo of clothing (male and female) ½ kilo documents captured by commandos.

b. Casualties: Friendly, 10 USN WIA, 3 USA WIA, 3 VN WIA; enemy, 3 VC KIA, 1 VC KIA (probable) by USN LHFT.

6. Additional results not previously noted:

a. T-132-3; fired M-79 grenade at suspected VIC position at YS037780 and observed a secondary explosion.

b. A-111-5 observed 2 secondary explosion VIC of YS037777 while returning enemy fire.

c. T-131-3 Battle damage to port screw and port shaft indicate possibility of VC using a VT fuse. Underwater explosion bent 2 screw blades forward and left burn marks on blades. Cutless bearing was forced forward. Water mining is ruled out as stream was swept twice and under constant observation.

d. T-131-6 Observed underwater explosion at stern.

e. T-131-11 Dud round put 4 inch hole in Styrofoam and knocked off 1 horizontal strip of bar armor starboard side.

f. M-91-1: 1 radio handset destroyed; hole in STBD side Styrofoam below mortar pit and damaged bar armor; damaged to superstructure on port side amidships near coxn flat; radar antenna damaged by shrapnel and small arms.

g. A-111-4: 2 rocket entry holes port side-one exit hole STBD side; coxn flat canopy destroyed; minor fire damage.

h. A-92-5: RPG 7 round entered STBD side amidships-damage to fuel tank and filter; STBD side after port gear locker destroyed with loss of some personal gear by fire.

i. All boats except T-131-7 suffered varying degrees of small arms and shrapnel damage.

As a result of operating in Vung Tau area and this action the following ammunition supply critically low:

20MM Linked 28,000 Rds.
40MM M-79 9,248
This in effect casrepts 4 ATC’s

Closing comments:

This was an after action report that I received from the Navy. The reason you see 131 boats is because we were chopped to RAS 11 in the beginning before all of our boats were in country. Ralph Bigelow T-131-8