Tag: Little Bird Dog and the Big Ship
There was little deliberation and almost instantaneous action by Captain Chambers who ordered that all of the arresting wires drawn across the deck in order to reduce the speed of the landing jets be removed. He did not hesitate to order every available seaman on deck to move as many helicopters as possible to one side of the ship. Any aircraft impeding the ingress of the little Bird-dog and its invaluable cargo would be pushed overboard and into the sea.
I was a eight, just a few months shy of nine at the time my oldest brother was killed and my parents’ hearts were intractably broken. I am the youngest of their seven children, my only sister was the oldest, with five brothers in-between. Don was born on my sister’s first birthday, March 6, 1948.
The words “Operation Babylift” had a muted familiarity to me. I was 13 years old at the time the United States Military was forced by the 94th Congress to pull out of Southeast Asia. But my interest grew and Bob described to me an event which would come to be known as one of the greatest humanitarian efforts of the 20th Century.
The unit went about another 1000 yards and came upon a complex of caves. While exploring these, we found a complete hospital unit and the medicines that were stockpiled where from Berkeley College in California!
Lanh, I am getting old now, and it’s been many years since that dreadful war in your homeland took your precious life. I remember the times we had together (too few), in between patrols and missions, when we talked about getting married.
There are no other patriotic books for young children written about the Vietnam Era. Emerging generations need to know the stories of heroism and honor that came out of the Vietnam War.
Bung Ly, the heroic pilot of the little Cessna O-1 Bird Dog, stood once again on the deck of the USS Midway and recounted the tale of his escape from Con Son Island and rescue by Captain Chambers and his exhausted crew.
The true story of Bung Ly and the amazing rescue of his family on the USS Midway is captivating children of all ages.