The 1/92nd Field Artillery
Association - Vietnam



Operational Reports/Lessons Learned

1 Nov '67 to 31 Jan '68

APO 96318

AVGG-BJ-C                                            4 February 1968

SUBJECT: Operational Report for Quarterly Period Ending 31 January 1968
(Reports Control Symbol CSFOR-65


1. (C) General

a. The 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery is attached to the 52d Artillery Group. This battalion has provided timely and accurate artillery support to all elements in the central highlands. Units supported by this battalion include the 4th Infantry Division, the 173rd Airborne Brigade, 11th Ranger Battalion (ARVN), 3rd Cavalry Squadron (ARVN), 23rd Ranger Battalion (ARVN) and Le Trung District.

b. In supporting the various units in the central highlands, the 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery has moved to numerous firing positions by motor convoy and has expanded the artillery support in the highlands by moving the 155mm towed howitzers five (5) times by CH-54 Skycrane helicopters during the reporting period.

c. The 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery meteorological section has provided meteorological support to all artillery units in the Dak To area of the central highlands. The meteorological station normally computes four meteorological messages in a 24 hour period. These messages have been used by units from the 52d Artillery Group, 4th Infantry Division and the 173rd Airborne Brigade. These messages have been used by as many as twenty nine field artillery units and an unknown number of Army and Air Force units.

d. The battalion has had elements moving on thirty days of this reporting period. Each battery spent a minimum of one day a week conducting refresher training in those areas deemed most important by the battery commander. Every day of the reporting period was spent on operations with training and movement conducted concurrently.  

2. (C) Intelligence

a. Intelligence information has been obtained by the battalion through the 52d Artillery Group; II Corps; 5th Special Forces; 11th ARVN Ranger Battalion; 23d ARVN Ranger Battalion; 3rd ARVN Cavalry; 2d Squadron, 1st Cavalry; 4th Infantry Division; Le Trung District Headquarters; Pleiku Sector, visual reconnaissance by battalion air observers and forward observers.

b. A target information center has been established at battalion headquarters. This center continually gathers information from all sources throughout the Pleiku area. This information is placed in the intelligence cycle to assist in discerning that information which will lead to possible targets in the future. This method of target analysis has proven successful in destroying a potential rocket site on 29 January 1968, during a critical time for the Pleiku area.

c. The battalion has established forward observation posts in the central highlands on Highway 19E and with the batteries of the battalion. These observation posts have been used as intelligence sources primarily for an on-the-spot study of the terrain in their particular area. In addition, should an element in their area come under rocket or mortar attack, the observers are able to locate the enemy mortars and rockets with excellent accuracy.

d. All intelligence gathered during a 24 hour period is compiled at battalion headquarters and disseminated to the batteries and passed to higher headquarters. A thorough briefing is conducted every morning.

3. (C) Operations and Training Activities:

a. Plans: No significant reports.

b. Operations:

(1) The battalion is presently participating in operation MacArthur, an operation it has participated in the entire reporting period. The current mission of Battery A, located at ZA228536, is General Support to the Pleiku Defense Sector. Battery B, located at YB909121, and Battery C, located at ZB006217, have the mission of General Support, Reinforcing the 6th Battalion, 29th Artillery.

(2) An organizational chart is attached as Inclosure I.

(3) Numerous displacements of battery size units were made during the reporting period. If the element moved by road the convoy was provided road security from the unit assigned to secure the road. In addition the air observer from the battalion flew cover for the move whenever possible. All personnel were thoroughly briefed in ambush procedures and machine guns were mounted for such use. Pre-planned fires were used whenever the move occurred within range of an artillery unit. When the units moved by air, both the landing zone and pick-up zone were secured by infantry units prior to landing or after leaving a position. The unit SOP has proven to be excellent for moves by air using the CH-47 Chinook and the CH-54 Skycrane.

(4) The following is a chronological listing of the most important operational activities during the reporting period. This listing was compiled from 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery daily SITREP and Daily Staff Journal.

03 November 67: Two 105 howitzers moved from Battery D, ZA226535 on Artillery Hill, to ZA188633 to conduct an artillery raid on planned targets. An air observer which watched the entire operation observed no significant result of firing due to double canopy. The howitzers returned to the battery area at 1430 hours.

04 November 67: Two howitzers from Battery B, at BR123552 on highway 19E, displaced by road to AR981653 to conduct an artillery raid in area AR8875. Intelligence indicated that this could be a VC resupply area. During the firing of 106 HE rounds two secondary explosions were observed. The howitzers returned to the battery at 1630 hours.

05 November 67: Battery B, which had two howitzers at BR036537 and four at BR123552 on highway 19E, displaced the entire battery (six howitzers) by road to ZB053218 (Dak To area). The battery closed at 1815 hours with the mission of General Support to the 4th Infantry Division. In order to insure the security of highway 19E the two remaining 155mm howitzers from Battery A attached to Battery D moved to BR123552. Two howitzers from Battery C, YA922270, moved by road to BR036537.

09 November 67: The four howitzers from Battery C (-), YA922270, moved by road to ZA058312. Battery C (-) received the mission of General Support Reinforcing the 3rd Battalion, 6th Artillery.

13 November 67: Battery B moved from Dak To, ZB053218, to LZ Hambone at YB90851207. This move was accomplished through the use of CH-47 Chinook helicopters and CH-54 Skycrane helicopters. The move was prompted by the large enemy buildup southwest of Dak To near the Cambodian border. Battery B began almost immediately to play an important role in the up coming battle of Dak To. The mission of Battery B was General Support, 4th Infantry Division.

17 November 67: Intelligence data again indicated a large enemy buildup in the area of ZA2370, north of Pleiku. Two 105 howitzers from Battery D moved to ZA193673 to conduct an artillery raid in the area. Battery D expended 184 rounds with no significant results observed by the battalion air observer. The target area was in double canopy jungle. The battery was preparing to return to Artillery Hill at 1000 hours when they were attacked with automatic weapons fire from the north. The air observer, Captain Charles M. Dean, spotted the enemy fire and adjusted the howitzers fire on to the target. The firing continued and Captain Dean coordinated an attack on the enemy by three Headhunters (01 aircraft), two Sky Raiders and one platoon of the 2d Squadron, 1st Cavalry. There were no friendly casualties and enemy casualties were unknown.

20 November 67: Two howitzers from Battery C (forward at BR036537 moved to BR003619 to support an operation by the 2d Squadron, 1st Cavalry. The cavalry and a company of engineers covered an anti-tank ditch in the area and conducted search and destroy operations.

22 November 68: Two howitzers from Battery C (forward) returned to BR036537, closing at 1120 hours. The 2d Squadron, 1st Cavalry operation ended.

25 November 67: All four howitzers from Battery C (-) ZA058312 returned to Cavalry Hill, YA992270 because the maneuver forces moved further west. Mission was still General Support Reinforcing 3rd Battalion, 6th Artillery.

03 December 67: Battery B, which was involved in the Battle of Dak To, continued to fire in support of that operation. Battery B fired over 10,000 rounds since 13 November 67. Much of the firing was at night with some missions lasting 42 hours.

08 December 67: Battery B moved by Chinook and Skycrane helicopters to LZ Satan, YB853188. The Battle of Dak To was officially over and Battery B moved to a position to better support the infantry.

09 December 67: LTC Alfred J. Cade assumed command of the 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery. Out-going commander was LTC Joe B. Myers.

12 December 67: Battery C (forward) at BR036537, moved by road to BR090607 in support of the 2d Squadron, 1st Cavalry operation. Battery B moved by CH-54 Skycrane and CH-47 Chinook helicopters to ZB13523597. Battery B;s mission remained General Support 4th Infantry Division.

30 December 67: Battery C (forward) at Br090607, returned to BR036537. No change in mission.

01 January 68: Battalion Observation Post was established in the vicinity of AR994524. From this observation post, highway 19E can be viewed from Suoi Doi to Le Trung District Headquarters. It is believed that this observation post caused significant reduction in incidents occurring on highway 19E between Le Trung, AR885491 and Suoi Doi, BR036537. Both Battery A and Battery C (forward) were able to fire in support of the observation post.

04-06 January 68: Battery B began an air move by CH-47 and CH-54 helicopters to new Fire Support Base at ZB158468 on 4 January 68. The fog became too thick and the firing battery remained split until 6 January 68 when the move could be completed. The battery SOP had allowances for such an event and both the old and new Fire Support Bases could deliver fire. Battery B's mission remained unchanged.

07 January 68: Battery C (forward) at BR036537 moved by road to YB992270, rejoining the battery. Battery C's mission was General Support, 4th Infantry Division.

08 January 68: Battery C moved from YA992270 by road to ZA0588435. This move was in response to request for fire support west of Pleiku. Mission of Battery C was General Support Reinforcing 4th Battalion, 42d Artillery. Battery B assigned mission of General Support Reinforcing 6th Battalion, 29th Artillery.

14 January 68: Battery B moved by Skycrane and Chinook helicopters to YB909121, LZ Hambone. It appeared that there was an enemy force in the area southwest of Dak To. Their mission was unchanged. Battery A (forward) at BR123552 rejoined Battery A at Le Trung and moved to Artillery Hill. Battery A assumed the mission of General Support Pleiku Defense. Battery D, 105mm (provisional) was deactivated and men and equipment returned to various units in the 52d Artillery Group.

17 January 68: Battery C moved by road to Plei Mrong, ZA113676. The move was in anticipation of enemy activity northwest of Pleiku. The mission of Battery C was General Support Reinforcing 4th Battalion, 42d Artillery. A 105mm training team was established by the 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery and sent to Bu Prang to train individuals (ARVN) in the use of the 105mm howitzer, Fire Direction Control procedures and observation. Training is expected to last for two weeks.

18 January 68: The mission of Battery C was changed to General Support Reinforcing, 3rd Battalion, 319th Artillery. The 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry moved into Plei Mrong for operations.

20 January 68: Artillery Hill, ZA228537, was attacked by enemy rockets (122mm). The rockets landed in the 71st Evacuation Hospital south of Artillery Hill. Battery A and Battery C were able to mass on the suspected rocket site under the control of the battalion Fire Direction Center. 375 rounds were expended in assisting to halt the attack. There was good coverage of the rocket site.

23 January 68: Battery C moved by road from ZA113676 to Artillery Hill, ZA228537. Battery C, 5th Battalion, 16th Artillery and recent intelligence indicated that Pleiku would be heavily attacked between 25 January and 29 January 1968. The 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery, Battalion Fire Direction Center assumed fire control over all batteries on Artillery Hill. The 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery assisted in establishing communications with all the firing batteries.

24 January 68: 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery air observer and Battalion Fire Direction Center controlled the registration and firing of the four batteries on Artillery Hill and Battery B, 6th Battalion, 14th Artillery at Soui Doi (BR036537). Two time on target (TOT) missions and three preparation missions were fired in support of the 1st Battalion, 22d Infantry entering an area of operation north of Pleiku.

25 January 68: Battery C moved by road to Dak To, ZB005218 and closed at 1215 hours. Battery C joined Battery B in mission of General Support Reinforcing, 6th Battalion, 29th Artillery.

26 January 68: Installation in the Pleiku area came under ground and mortar attacks. Battery A, 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery and Battery A 3rd Battalion, 6th Artillery fired from Artillery Hill under control of the 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery Fire Direction Center. Battery A 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery expended 214 rounds, firing primarily at exfiltration routes since the enemy could not be exactly located.

27 January 68: The Army airstrip at Camp Holloway near Pleiku, came under rocket attack. Battery A 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery and Battery A 3rd Battalion, 6th Artillery again fired in defense of Pleiku. A possible rocket site predetermined by the Battalion S3 and Assistant S3 was ordered fired by the howitzers. This area was the rocket site and only minor damage was caused by the enemy rockets. Battery A 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery expended 147 rounds during the attack and suppressed the enemy rockets.

29 January 68: 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery S3 and 52d Artillery Group S3 conferred on areas of likely rocket positions for an attack on Pleiku and Artillery Hill. At battalion request, a Headhunter pilot initiated a mission on the possible area at ZA187599. Battery A 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery and Battery A 3rd Battalion, 6th Artillery massed fires on the area, received a secondary explosion, and possibly one casualty. The air observer said area had foxholes under trees and was covered well with fires from both batteries.

30 January 68: Installations in Pleiku area again came under rocket and mortar attack. Six minutes after flash was spotted, Battery A 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery and Battery A 3rd Battalion, 6th Artillery were firing on the rocket site. These targets were pre-planned and data already on the guns. Rounds landed right on enemy rockets, confirmed by "Spooky" pilot and ground observation. 2 KIA (Body Count) confirmed at the rocket site by D Company, 1st Battalion 503d Infantry, killed by artillery. Batteries shifted to interdiction targets. Battery C, using intelligence and sound gunnery procedures, fired on a suspect mortar location at BR301305 and killed 63 enemy. This is the largest confirmed enemy killed in any single action by a battery from the 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery.

c. Training: The training program within the battalion is conducted at battalion and battery levels. Replacement training, focusing on weapons zeroing and familiarizing the individual with his new environment, is begun at the battalion and completed at the battery field location with on-the-job training. The batteries conduct additional refresher training which allows the battery commanders to emphasize those areas he feels must be refreshed. Although only a few hours are scheduled for formal training, on-the-job training is a never ending process due to the rapid personnel turn over. Cross-training of personnel in all MOS fields is conducted at battery level. The battalion sent a training team to Bu Prang on 17 January 1968 at the request of the Special Forces company at Pleiku. One officer and seven enlisted men conducted training for US Special Forces and CIDG personnel in 105mm howitzer gunnery and fire direction procedures.

d. Chemical: No significant activities.

e. Psywar: No significant activities.

f. Other: No significant activities.

4 (C) Logistics: The logistics areas have presented no overbearing problems. Supply for the batteries during the period has come directly from Pleiku by vehicle or has been flown to the batteries by CH-47 Chinook helicopters. Currently, all classes of supply for all batteries are handled by the battalion by vehicle from Plieku with the exception of Classes I, III, and V for batteries B and C which are drawn at Dak To. The battalion has used it's vehicles on many occasions to resupply the ammunition resupply point at Dak To in order to keep pace with the high demands for ammunition in that area. The CH-47 Chinook helicopter has been the only way to resupply Battery B during most of the reporting period. As a result of having Battery B in relatively inaccessible areas (by vehicle) the battalion has used 472 CH-47 Chinook sorties. The five airmoves by Battery B has necessitated 33 CH-54 Skycrane helicopter sorties. Three of the CH-54 Skycrane sorties were for rotating the float howitzer.

5. (U) Civil Affairs: No significant activities.

6. (C) Personnel:

a. Casualties: 2

b. During the period the following personnel actions occurred:

(1) Personnel losses: 138

(2) Personnel gains: 203

(3) Present for duty strength as of 31 January 1968: 589

(4) Promotion allocations:

(a) E4: 88

(b) E5: 43

(c) E6: 9

(5) Mail: Support is adequate.

(6) R and R quotas: 103

(7) Pay has been timely and accurate.

7. (C) Artillery: Rounds expended during the period:

155MM Howitzer HE 30480 PD 31872 99,656
ILL 608 MTSQ 348
SMK 2855 VT 371
  M501A1 1029
  M565 323
105mm Howitzer HE 4176 PD 3517 13,663
ILL 99 MTSQ 103
SMK 205 VT 815
  M501A1 19
  M565 26

8. (U) Other: No significant events.



Part 1. Observations (Lessons Learned)

1. (C) Persil: No observations

2. (C) Operations:

a. Item: Observation Posts and Firing Batteries

Discussion: Observation posts for general support artillery battalions are used to increase and improve observation within the area of operations (AO). General support observation posts are normally fixed in the same location for a period of days rather than constantly shifting. Security and facilities for a battalion observation post are available if the observation post is located with a firing battery. This also gives rapid response to the observer for fir requests. In addition, the forward observer gives rapid target information when the fire base is attacked by rockets to include recoilless rifles, and/or mortars, especially with prior planning. As an example, one battery of the battalion in a remote fire base lays tubes on possible enemy direct fire and indirect fire positions for "counter fire" when not firing missions. On two consecutive days that battery was attacked by recoiless rifles, once by direct fire, once by indirect. The observer gave an exact azimuth and distance both times. The battery fired direct fire within 28 seconds of receiving the initial incoming round on one attack and fired indirect fire within 22 seconds after receiving the first round in the other attack.

Observation: General support artillery observation post can be located with general support batteries (or any battery) in remote areas to provide increased observation within the AO.

b. Item: Air Mobility, 155mm Towed Howitzer

Discussion: Batteries of the Battalion have been moved by CH-54 Skycrane sixteen times. On all moves the howitzers have been suspended by four points. This gives increased stability in flight and less strain on the slings. Less strain on the slings is important because sand and dirt gets ingrained in the sling and cuts and weakens and the rated capacity of each sling is lessened. The ideal method of rigging is one-twenty foot sling looped around the trails through the lifting handles, one-nine foot sling looped around each axle and a nine foot sling looped around the forward portion of the recoil system. All slings meet over the howitzer's balance point and are joined by a heavy duty clevis. If nine foot slings are not available, double twenty foot slings can be used, giving even greater strength. Slings are looped around the axles to insure all slings meet over the balance point.

Observations: Four point suspension for the 155mm towed howitzer is the best method of rigging.

c. Item: Operations Codes

Discussion: Operations codes contained in SOI's of different units within one area of operations (AO) should be the same. In the area of Pleiku, for instance, there are units using five different operations cods. Passing information and receiving information of a classified nature to and from some units within range of our artillery is impossible.

Observation: All units within an AO should use the operations code of the unit responsible for the AO.

d. Item: Vehicular LMG Mounts

Discussions: This battalion moves over unsecure roads often and no vehicular mounts for the M-60 LMG are authorized. The fire power of the LMG while in a convoy is restricted for quick employment in any direction without a mount. The battalion experimented with mounts which came straight up from the floor of vehicles. This type of mount was unsatisfactory because it could not be interchanged between 5 tons, 2½ tons, ¾ tons and ¼ tons due to vehicle construction and configuration. For instance, a mount which would fit in the rear of a ¼ ton would not work for a 5 ton ammunition truck cab. Nor could it go in the cargo bed with the ammunition. Also, in a ¼ ton the LMG could be fired to the rear only if the gunner stood on the gear shift due to the length of the LMG shoulder stock. Similarly, in a 5 ton the gunner could fire to the rear only if he sat on the hood. In an ambush no time exists for such scrambling. The battalion designed a mount which would go in any vehicle and allow the gunner to fire in any direction by shifting his feet around the pedestal base. The mount, when tested, proved to be steadier than the straight shaft pedestal in that it absorbed shock better. Two swivel joints are used (see inclosure 2). The mount can be made from easily obtainable pipe and right angle pipe joints. It can be sandbagged and bolted down for a steady base, yet moved from vehicle to vehicle as necessary. This means only one LMG mount per LMG is needed. Test firing has proven that the gunner can fire with equal ease in any direction without contorting his body or trampling on the driver. The double swivel is essential for 360 degree rapid swivel.

Observation: LMG field expedient vehicular mounts can be made by a unit which allows rapid firing in any direction and which can be used in any vehicle to tailor requirements to an entire battery move or a resupply run.

3. (U) Training and Organization: None

4. (U) Intelligence: None

5. (U) Logistics: None

6. (U) Other: None


1. (U) Personnel: None

2. (U) Operations: None

3. (C) Training and Organization: None

4. (U) Intelligence: None

5.(U) Logistics: None

6. (U) Other: None

                              Alfred J. Cade
2 Incl                        LTC, Artillery
Organizational Chart          Commanding
LMG Mount          

AVGG-CO (4 Feb 68)         1st Ind
SUBJECT: Operational Report for Quarterly Period Ending 31 January 1968,
Reports Control Symbol CSFOR-65 (1st Bn, 92d Arty)

HEADQUARTERS 52d Artillery Group, APO 96318   14 February 1968

TO: Commanding General, I FFORCEV Artillery, APO 96350

1. (U) Forwarded.

2. (U) Concur with contents of basic report except for Section 2, Part 1, paragraph 2 C, item: Operations Codes. The observation is valid and has merit, however it is apparent that general support artillery must keep current and use the operations codes of supported units. Group units may operate across many Areas of Operation. It is not advisable to have an overall operations code because any advantages would be offset by the increased possibilities of compromise and the communications difficulties in making rapid changes to codes.

                        Hal E. Hallgren
                        Colonel, Artillery

AVFA-AT-D (4 Feb 68)         2d Ind
SUBJECT: Operational Report for Quarterly Period Ending 31 January 1968,

Reports Control Symbol CSFOR-65 (1st Bn, 92d Arty)


THRU: Commanding General, I Field Force Vietnam, ATT: AVFA-GC-OT, APO 96350

TO: Department of the Army, Assistant Chief of Staff for Force Development, Washington, D.C. 20310

Concur with observations contained in basic communication and preceding indorsement.

                        Louis W. Mitera
                        2LT, Arty
                        Asst Adjutant

AVFA-GC-OT  (4 Feb 68)             3d Ind
SUBJECT: Operational Report - Lessons Learned for Quarterly Period Ending 31 January 1968, RCS CSFOR-65  UIC WA2NAA  1st Bn, 92d Arty (U)


TO: Commanding General, United States Army Vietnam, ATTN: AVHGC-DST, APO 96375



                           Robert C. Gabbard
Copy furnished             1LT, AGC
1st Bn,, 92d Arty          Asst Adjutant General

AVHGC-DST (4 Feb 68)               4th Ind (U)
SUBJECT: Operational Report for Quarterly Period Ending 31 January 1968,
Reports Control Symbol CSFOR-65


TO: Commander in Chief, United States Army, Pacific, ATTN: GPOP-DT, APO 96558

1. This headquarters has reviewed the Operational Report-Lessons Learned for the period ending 31 January 1968 from Headquarters, 1st Battalion, 92d Artillery (A2NA) as indorsed.

2. Concur with report as indorsed. Report is considered adequate.

3. A copy of this indorsement will be furnished to the reporting unit through channels.


                   C. S. Nakatsukasa
                   Captain AGC
                   Assistant Adjutant General

Copy furnished:
HQ, 1st Bn, 92d Arty

GPOP-DT (4 Feb 68)                     5th Ind (U)
SUBJECT: Operational Report for the Quarterly Period Ending 31 Jan 68 from HQ, 1st Bn, 92d Arty (UIC: WAZNAA)(RCS CSFOR-65)


TO: Assistant Chief of Staff for Force Development, Department of the Army, Washington, DC 20310

This headquarters has evaluated subject report and forwarding indorsements and concurs in the report as indorsed.


                     K. F. OSBOURN
                     MAJ, AGC
                     Asst AG

1st Battalion, 92d Artillery

Inclosure 1

Inclosure 2


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