The 9th Infantry Division in Vietnam: Unparalleled and Unequaled

By Ira A. Hunt | Go to book overview

Chapter 10
A Total Division Effort

This discussion has focused primarily on the combat capabilities of infantrymen and their direct support organizations: the artillery, air cavalry, assault helicopters, Air Force, and Navy. Many other units not specifically mentioned—such as the 45th Infantry Platoon (Scout Dog), the 65th Infantry Platoon (Combat Tracker), the Air Cushion Vehicle Platoon, the 1097th Transportation Company (Medium Boat), and the 15th Engineer Combat Battalion—also participated in ferreting out and destroying the enemy.

For example, on 26 April, while en route to conduct a cordon and search
operation, B/2-47 Infantry received very heavy fire from a large enemy
unit which was fortified in bunkers. The company occupied a blocking
position while air strikes and artillery were brought to bear on the enemy
until they could be reinforced by other units. When the reinforcement ar-
rived, which were C/2-47 Infantry and two platoons of D Company, 15th
Engineer Battalion, the assault was renewed. Sixty-three enemy of the K-6
Battalion, 1st NVA Regiment were killed.

Yet, all units of the division contributed to its combat success. The importance of the medical battalion needs no explanation. Not only did the doctors, nurses, and corpsmen maintain the health of the troops, but they were instrumental in the humanitarian efforts on behalf of the Vietnamese people, thus fostering pacification. The 9th Signal Battalion provided outstanding communications, so essential to combat effectiveness. The aircraft and other equipment were maintained and repaired by the 709th Maintenance Battalion. Its mechanics were often called upon at night to fly over enemy territory to repair radars. The 9th Supply and Transportation Battalion kept an average of thirty-eight

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