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Last updated on 4/7/24

Site established on 3/22/01

18th Aviation Company

18th Aviation Company. Equipped with U1A (Otter) airplanes, it arrived in Vietnam in Nov 1961. The HQ was in Nha Trang, but the company had airplanes scattered throughout the country-Danang, Pleiku, Banmethouot and Saigon. The primary mission was support of the Military Advisory Group and every place that had a little airfield. Airfields (really little dirt or PSP strips) from Quang Tri in the north to CaMau in the south were our area of operation. I joined the 18th in Nov 1962 as one of the first replacements. My in-country check out consisted of a flight of about 15 minutes and two landings at a short strip!!! The pilots were rotated from city to city about every three months to give you a better perspective of what was going on. Plus it increased/decreased your chances of survival. In Danang it was all mountainous flying except for the 5 airfields on the coastal plain, with literally no place to go should you have engine problems. But none of the Otters were shot at in at area, while I was there. In Saigon, it was all Mekong Delta flying with plenty of places to "land" in an emergency. But it seemed to me that every village had someone who liked to shoot at Otters, although my aircraft was never hit. In Aug 1963 JUSMAG Thailand ran out of airplanes and asked for a U1A and a Caribou to be sent on temporary duty. I ws lucky to be selected as one of the Otter pilots and spent 30 wonderful days flying in Thailand (No one shooting at us) I was in Saigon in Nov 1963 when the Coup against President Diem took place. We were living in a hotel 2 block from the Presidential Palace and there was all sorts of shooting going on. I spent the night on the floor and was glad when it finally ended about 5 in the morning. - Courtesy of Bill C. Walton

Image courtesy of Bill C. Walton

I am looking for some one that knew my dad. His name was John A. Robinson. He was a sp4 in the 18th aviation company & served in Vietnam from 7/71-4/72.
Image courtesy of Shawn Robinson

18th Aviation Company (Otter) maintenance hanger at Qui Nhon. I was the stand down officer and the last member of the 18th Aviation Company (Otter) in Qui Nhon Vietnam. We turned in the equipment, aircraft and retired the colors in the spring of 1971. Since I was a 1LT and still had about six months left in my tour, was reassigned to the 17th Aviation Group HQ at Tuy Hoa as the Engineering Staff Officer and general Fixed Wing pilot to complete my year in country. To my knowledge, everyone else in the 18th returned to the US during the company stand down.
Image courtesy Richard (Rick) A. Pazderski Sr.

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