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Last updated on 9/17/22

Site established on 3/22/01


"WO1 Steve Shepard, wearing his prized Stetson and "Ray-Ban" sunglasses, points to a bullet hole in the tail boom of his Cobra" Steve Shepard
Image courtesy of Steve Shepard

"Original invoice from the Stetson Hat Company for Steve Shepard's Cav Hat". Interesting to note the price ($17.50) and Stetson's nomenclature - "Air Cavalry Hat".
Image courtesy of Steve Shepard

"30 years later and Shep is still wearing the hat"
Image courtesy of Steve Shepard

Class "B" summer uniform shirt with Vietnamese hand embroidered insignia & 1st Aviation brigade patch on hanger tab attached to right chest pocket. Pocket hanger patches were against regulation but popular and widely worn among pilots and crewman in country.

Field grade army officer's visor cap for Aviation branch dress blue uniform

Officer's dress blue uniform reflecting a career in Army Aviation. Note that the branch color is aviation blue yet collar devices and home unit crest are Cavalry. Only 2 Cavalry regiments are entitled to Aviation branch colors: the 1st & 17th

ARVN issue Tiger stripe shirt traded to Captain Hugh Mills (Darkhorse 16) while scout platoon commander with C troop, 16th Cavalry, 1971. The shirt was exchanged with Captain Mills by a Montagnard tribesman for a short hover flight in the OH-6 #17340 "Miss Clawd IV". Miss Clawd now resides in the Army Aviation museum at Fort Rucker

Armor Officer's Mess jacket worn by then captain Hugh L. Mills shortly after his tour with D troop, 3rd Squadron, 5th Cavalry regiment. Of interest are the 3/5 Cavalry devices on cuffs and the miniature aviator wing and medal group on the left lapel of the jacket

Hugh Mills, wedding day, wearing Mess jacket as featured on this page
Image courtesy of Hugh Mills

Navy uniforms of Vietnam

Army uniforms of Vietnam

Air Force uniforms of Vietnam

Tiger Stripe shirt with insignia for recovery team member with the 335th Transportation Company. Patch features callsign "Gunsmoke Recovery"

Steve Shepard, C troop, 7th Squadron, 17th Cavalry wearing  flame retardent "Nomex" shirt. Note 7/17 "Ruthless Riders" pocket patch. Circa 1972
Image courtesy of Steve Shepard

Survival vest Manual

ARVN troops operating with the 121st AHC. Note Tiger Stripe uniforms & hats, black scarves, etc.
Image courtesy of Lowell L. Eneix

ARVN troops in Tiger Stripe field uniforms at a popular strip just south of the triangle. About the middle of Feb. 68
Image courtesy of Lowell L. Eneix

Typical flying attire prior to Nomex. 3rd Pattern Jungle Fatigue shirt with trousers and leather Combat boots to prevent fire related injuries to feet. Also the Hot weather field cap with rank insignia applied to the front. Note 121st AHC "Soc Trang Tigers" patch on right chest pocket.
Image courtesy of Forrest L. Webb

Early international Orange flight suit

Early K-2B flight suit worn in the pre-nomex days. This example worn by Jerry Kolb while participating with the 82nd Airborne in the Dominican republic. Kold was also active with the 3/17 Cavalry in the formation of the 11th Air Assault Division at Fort Benning in 1963 and this is reflected by the "Air Assault" patch on the right chest pocket.

Special Thanks to Pat Derifield

Government spec. label in Jerry Kolb's Flught dated March, 1962

Stetson Cav hat with original 2/17th Cav crossed sabre device & 'locally made' headband over the ribbon.
Image courtesy of Doug Kibbey

2nd of two original 'boonie hats' I wore there (first one worn/rotted out). Band frayed for 'leafy' effect, grenade ring in band at front and crossed flechettes around the peak (anti-personnel projectiles from 152mm canister rounds, probably similar to what was in some rockets and arty rounds). Didn't really wear that bright "screaming eagle" in the bush
Image courtesy of Doug Kibbey

L-R... Nomex, 'locally made' tiger stripes, 'Leaf Pattern' camo, VN jungle fatigues...patch on camo pocket is 'Dirty Delta' (D troop, 2/17th Cav) standard patch. 'Screaming Eagles' in the bush were generally subdued in the white area with pencil lead or something. Subdued patches were probably available, but I don't recall ever seeing one in the 101st in RVN
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Image courtesy of Doug Kibbey

Private purchase Hot weather field cap with rank device and Aviator's wing applied to stiff front panel.

Image courtesy of Rick Schwab, C troop 2/17 cav.

Army Field grade officer's (Major, Lt. Col. and Colonel) visor cap

Image courtesy of Jim Newman, Condor 6, C 2/17

Darkhorse 16 Hugh Mills (D troop 1/4 Cav.) with a "Clown" Huey at LaiKhe, January/Feb 1969 Mills is "clowning" for the camera with his Gerber knife, western gunbelt and stateside fatigues.

Image courtesy of Hugh Mills

Members of the 101st Airborne were known to prefer color patches on their flight uniforms as evidenced by this photo. The mixture of Nomex clothing and standard Jungle fatigues was not unusual as the flame retardent Nomex flight suits were both difficult to obtain in the early phases of issue, and somewhat unpopular for many reasons. Note the "Cobra" pocket patch. Can anyone identify any of these men?

Image courtesy of John Jones

MA-1 Flight jacket Courtesy Bill Russell. "We had ascots that were vetically split and were half red and half white like a cavalry flag. We wore the ascot's in the states prior to deployment to RVN... I honestly can't remember wearing them once we got in country.... They probably wouldn't have looked as sharp with jungle fatigues or nomex flight suits as they did stateside with khaki's or standard fatigues... The entire troop(at least the pilots) had ascots... Personalized platoon patches came sometime after I left B troop around Dec 1, 1969... When I was there, most of the Cobra pilots at B troop had their Cobra school patch sewn on their flight jackets. Prior too our departure to Vietnam, B troop went under the moniker of F/15th Cav to confuse the enemy

Image courtesy of Bill Russell, B / 2/17th Air Cav 101st Abn Div 1969, 334th Atk Hel Co 1st Avn Bde 1970

The "GRIFFIN" dates back to WWII with the 377th Field Artillery.  The folks in the 11th Air Assault [11th Airborne Division Air Assault]  early 60's at Benning did their homework.  The Griffin went to RVN with the CAV [2/20 ARA] in 65' and came home with the 101st [4/77th ARA] in 72'.  
Images courtesy of Ed Miller, C btry 4/77 ARA

The Quentessential Air Cav Stetson hat - brimming with character and individualism. This example being worn by Aero Scout Pilot Captain Bob Newman, C troop Condors, 2/17 Cav Image courtesy of Rick Schwab, Condor 47

W.O. Byron 'Crash' Grubbs" in nicelt personalized "Stetson" and MA-1 aviator's flying jacket adorned with C troop,  'Condors' 2/17 Cav patches
Image courtesy of Rick Schwab, C 2/17, Condor 47

D.U.I. (distinctive unit insignia) for the 13th Combat Aviation Battalion to which A 3/17 was attached to
Image courtesy of Gunnar Schalin

Don Callison, D troop, 3/5 Cav in classic Attire for the "Light Horse" troop. Many of their frontier inspired traditions carried over into other units but only D troop wore light colored Stetsons.
Image courtesy of Don Callison, "Chicken Little" D 3/5

This is what was called a "Blood Chit". It is made of silk and was sewn on the back of our flack jackets. However, many of us thought it to be too much of a "bulls eye" if one were running in the jungle; so we cut them off and carried them in our jacket pockets. The wording is written in eight languages (English, Burmese, Thai, Laotian, Cambodian, Chinese, Chinese (Modern), and Tagalog) and reads: "I am a citizen of the United States of America. I do not speak your language. Misfortune forces me to seek your assistance in obtaining food, shelter and protection. Please take me to someone who will provide for my safety and see that I am returned to my people. My government will reward you." Also shown in the display case are the dog tags and St. Christopher's Medal that I wore on that first RVN tour.
Image courtesy of Charlie Dexter

LLDB Beret made by a company from Saigon as the label indicates.
Image courtesy of Piotrek Kolasinski

Obverse and reverse of the Army Air Crew wing as worn by crew chiefs and gunners. Reverse shows 2 small prongs with retainers for applying it to the uniform. This is still the method for attaching metal insignia and was first used in the 1920's.
Image courtesy of Jim Prine

A metal plate pocket patch I have from the 1st aviation brigade. The patch is a metal plate with the patch colors baked on it.
Image courtesy of David Green

This example of the widely issued M65 Field jacket was personalized by a member of the "Pink Panthers" and features a large, Vietnamese machine embroidered likeness of the famous Feline on the back. Personalization of this type of garment was not unusual with Flying personnel as many these units rarely came under close scrutiny for what they wore. The M65 Field jacket was a welcome commodity for those stationed in the Highlands.
Image courtesy of Leighton Longhi

L-2B Flying jacket worn by Lift Pilot Rick Schwab. This example is a good study of personalization featuring both authorized and unauthorized insignia. The Condor Troop patch for C/2/17 can be seen on the upper right chest. The lining of these jackets was bright orange for recognition purposes in a rescue effort.
Image courtesy of Rick Schwab, Condor 47, C/2/17 Cav.

Larry Brown - Charlie Horse 19 sports a private purchase hot weather field cap adorned with Lt's rank. Note also Larry's much worn yellow Cav scarf, "Nomex" flier's shirt and trace of a bullet laden shoulder holster on his left side.
Image courtesy of Larry Brown

Jungle fatigue shirt worn by Lou Barber as an assault helicopter flight leader in C Company, 227th AHB, First Cavalry Division 1966 - 1967.
Image courtesy of Lou Barber

Unlike many things produced in country, the hot weather field cap was greatly preferred over G.I. issue examples. This one was worn by Lou Barber while a flight leader in C company of the 227th AHB. It features an Army aviator wing and captain bar embroidered directly into the front. "Color" rank and badges were common prior to the introduction of subdued insignia in 1968.
Image courtesy of Lou Barber

Image courtesy of Greg Windsor - 240th AHC

Image courtesy of Greg Windsor - 240th AHC

2 piece "Nomex" flight suit ust as they were when I left Vietnam in 1973. I flew in the Nomex up until the cease fire on Jan 27th 1973 and beyond with the ICCS until April 15TH 1973. The night before the cease fire I removed the M60?s from my UH-IH and I flew with a Army issue shoulder holster 45 CAL.
Image courtesy of Bill Pecknold

Richard Duley in 2 piece nomex flight uniform - 196th ASHC - 1970
Image courtesy of Richard Duley

Richard Duley in dress blues - fresh out of flight school - 196th ASHC - 1970
Image courtesy of Richard Duley

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