Jump to content


FAC & TASS Patches - Vietnam

Started by River Patrol , Feb 14 2007 09:34 AM

  • Please log in to reply
60 replies to this topic

#26 gwb123

gwb123

    ADMINISTRATOR

  • Administrators
    • Member ID: 1,506
  • 11,819 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Omaha, Land of the Free

Posted 20 October 2007 - 08:07 PM

ALO FAC F19 patch -- This one is unknown to me, so if you have information about it, please share. I believe ALO is an acronym for Air Liason Officer (but could also be Aircraft Light Observation). So maybe this was a SVN Officer patch that acted as a Liason to the Army FAC units. I don't know...I'm just guessing. I'm unsure what the F-19 represents but it is also used on the companion patch (small diamond patch). The moto under neath the plane "Mot Minh Khong So" translates to "Alone and Not Afraid", which fits a FAC pilot's mission, flying alone in a single engine prop plane high above the jungles of Vietnam.


I believe I have an explanation for the "F-19" designation that you see on this patch.

The 0-1 Bird Dog observation planes were originally designated L-19 when the planes were first purchased by the US Army for the Korean War. According to an entry on Wikipedia "The Defense Department ordered 3,200 L-19s that were built between 1950 and 1959. The planes were used in various utility roles such as artillery spotting, front-line communications, medevac and training. In 1962 the army L-19 was redesignated the O-1 (Observation) Bird Dog and entered its second war in Vietnam."

The website that DaveP provided gives a further explanation with the history of the 505th Tactical Control Group:

"By April 1963, 32 PCS Liaison Officers in Vietnam were assigned to each Corps and Division with regiments covered on an "as needed" basis. The VNAF provided L-19 FAC vehicles at division level until the arrival of the 19th TASS with 22 O-1Fs in July 1963."

The ALO were USAF pilots serving as Air Liason Officers. This unit provided the beginnings of Tactical Air Control during the early stages of US involvement in the War.

Now for the "F-19" designation.... Many of these pilots were fighter jocks. They weren't quite thrilled to be considered anything less than a fighter pilot, so they unoffically renamed their aircraft with the "F-19" designation! This is further borne out by the "Mach .2" speed rating, as opposed to "Mach 2"!

This has always been one of my favorite patches, both for the history and dry sense of humor.

See:

http://en.wikipedia....ki/O-1_Bird_Dog

http://www.squawk-fl...5th_history.htm

#27 rje71

rje71
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,222
  • 19 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 01 January 2008 - 05:19 PM

Hello .... I was currious if you had any pic's of the whole suits for these 2 ... And if there was any idea about what time frame they may have been used ...

RJ


Two different party suit paches. 20th TASS.

The left on is thai made, the right one japanese.



NTS



#28 CCKen

CCKen
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,148
  • 18 posts

Posted 17 January 2008 - 01:24 PM

Posted Image
Steve, here is a picture of your second unknown patch worn in Vietnam. I do not remember where I found it, but the file name says 19th TASS.


Beezman,

That photo is of A1C James Meade receiving the Air Medal. Jim was a Forward Air Control radio operator with the 19 TASS station at Song Be in support of the 5th Special Foprces. The photo was taken c. 1966.

He says that VNAF used to wear this small F-19 patch but I haven't been able to substatiate that. I will let you know the history of the F-19 patch...if I ever find it out.

The larger F-19 patch was designed by a 19 TASS Forward Air Controller, Vandy Powell, in 1964. He said he was given one of the small F-19 patches but thought a FAC patch should be more than that so he said he designed a new patch. He said He added the O-1 (L-19) with bent wings and Mach .2 (about 120 mph). He said the people he arrived in VN with, April 1964, were all designated Air Liaison Officers/Forward Air Controllers (ALO/FAC) so that is why he put ALO/FAC VIETNAM on top of the patch. He said they seldom had anyone going (flying) with them in the back seat-that they mostly flew alone, so on the bottom he put MOT MINH KHONG SO, the Vietnamese for "Alone amnd Not Afraid". This larger F-19 patch was worn by 19 TASS FACS.

Ken Hinks
O-1 Crew Chief
19 TASS
Bien Hoa/Lai Khe
66/68

#29 River Patrol

River Patrol

    MODERATOR

  • Moderators
    • Member ID: 364
  • 2,172 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Baltimore, MD

Posted 18 January 2008 - 09:50 AM

Ken,

Thanks for the great information.

Beezman,

Thanks fo rthe photo. It's always good to have photographic evidence of a patch "in wear, in country".

Steve

#30 CCKen

CCKen
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,148
  • 18 posts

Posted 18 January 2008 - 12:52 PM

Ken,

Thanks for the great information.

Beezman,

Thanks fo rthe photo. It's always good to have photographic evidence of a patch "in wear, in country".

Steve


Beezman,

I just talked to Vandy and says he had the (larger) patches made in Saigon. He only had six made so if anyone has an original it is very rare.

Cheers,

Ken

#31 River Patrol

River Patrol

    MODERATOR

  • Moderators
    • Member ID: 364
  • 2,172 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Baltimore, MD

Posted 18 January 2008 - 01:24 PM

Ken,

Did you look at the one I show on the first page of this thread?

Steve

#32 CCKen

CCKen
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,148
  • 18 posts

Posted 20 January 2008 - 07:53 AM

Ken,

Did you look at the one I show on the first page of this thread?

Steve


Steve,

Here's a pic of a patch I got from Jim Meade. I haven't confirmed that this is an original patch yet, but take a look at the differences between this patch and yours. I will check on this patch with Vandy Powell and see if it's an original.

Ken


F_19_20Patch_jim_meade.jpg

#33 CCKen

CCKen
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,148
  • 18 posts

Posted 21 January 2008 - 04:20 PM

Steve,

Here's a pic of a patch I got from Jim Meade. I haven't confirmed that this is an original patch yet, but take a look at the differences between this patch and yours. I will check on this patch with Vandy Powell and see if it's an original.

Ken
F_19_20Patch_jim_meade.jpg


Here's a pic one of the original patches in Vandy Powell's collection of two. Only four more floating around.

Finished beating this issue to death.

Cheers,

Ken

#34 Howard Kelley

Howard Kelley
  • Members
    • Member ID: 389
  • 662 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Texas

Posted 21 January 2008 - 05:12 PM

Great thread!

Here are a few from my collection.

Howard

Attached Images

  • c123.jpg
  • c123a.jpg
  • 23rdTASS1.jpg


#35 Howard Kelley

Howard Kelley
  • Members
    • Member ID: 389
  • 662 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Texas

Posted 21 January 2008 - 05:19 PM

Here's another FAC patch....unknown to me but was in a VN vet's grouping.

I got tired of looking for information....and sold it!

Enjoy,
Howard

Attached Images

  • daffy.jpg


#36 River Patrol

River Patrol

    MODERATOR

  • Moderators
    • Member ID: 364
  • 2,172 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Baltimore, MD

Posted 21 January 2008 - 06:59 PM

Hi Howard

I remember the show when you sold that patch because I almost bought it. I think I know where it lives now! Nice stuff Howard!

Steve

#37 River Patrol

River Patrol

    MODERATOR

  • Moderators
    • Member ID: 364
  • 2,172 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Baltimore, MD

Posted 21 January 2008 - 07:07 PM

Finished beating this issue to death.

Cheers,

Ken



Hi Ken,

I don't see any NEW picture. And the picture you show of your patch matches the patch I show at the start of this thread (on Page 1).

Take a look again and please clarify.....

Thanks,
Steve

#38 Howard Kelley

Howard Kelley
  • Members
    • Member ID: 389
  • 662 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Texas

Posted 21 January 2008 - 07:17 PM

Hi Howard

I remember the show when you sold that patch because I almost bought it. I think I know where it lives now! Nice stuff Howard!

Steve



Hello Steve,

Still wish I knew what the insignia represented! It was (and IS) a wierd piece.

Look forward to seeing you at the SOS, or other shows! :D

Best Regards,
Howard

#39 CCKen

CCKen
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,148
  • 18 posts

Posted 22 January 2008 - 01:05 PM

Hi Ken,

I don't see any NEW picture. And the picture you show of your patch matches the patch I show at the start of this thread (on Page 1).

Take a look again and please clarify.....

Thanks,
Steve


Steve,

here's Vandy's original patch. There's some differences in most patches I see.


Vandy_Powell__s_original_patch0001_compressed.jpg

#40 CCKen

CCKen
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,148
  • 18 posts

Posted 22 January 2008 - 02:20 PM

Here's another FAC patch....unknown to me but was in a VN vet's grouping.

I got tired of looking for information....and sold it!

Enjoy,
Howard


That, I believe, is the U.S. Army Starcom Facilities Control. I don't know what the "FAC" signifies.

Ken

#41 CCKen

CCKen
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,148
  • 18 posts

Posted 22 January 2008 - 02:23 PM

That, I believe, is the U.S. Army Starcom Facilities Control. I don't know what the "FAC" signifies.

Ken



It just dawned on me that FAC stands for facilities. They were with the Signal Corp.

#42 River Patrol

River Patrol

    MODERATOR

  • Moderators
    • Member ID: 364
  • 2,172 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Baltimore, MD

Posted 22 January 2008 - 03:29 PM

Hi Ken

Now THAT one is made differently! It has nice machine embroidered top and bottom rockers or scrolls, if you will, and some hand embroidered details in the center of the patch. The other one I show must be a hand-made "cheap charlie". This adds to my theory!

Thanks for clarifying! A very rare patch indeed!

Steve

#43 CCKen

CCKen
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,148
  • 18 posts

Posted 23 January 2008 - 06:45 PM

Here are two nice FACs.


A little trivia about the 23rd TASS patch.

http://aircommandoma...d.com/id18.html

Scroll down a ways - there's talk of a Capt. Taylor getting Walt Diseny to develop the patch.

Ken
19 TASS

#44 Howard Kelley

Howard Kelley
  • Members
    • Member ID: 389
  • 662 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Texas

Posted 31 January 2008 - 02:18 PM

Found another piece in my photo archives.

I have no recollection of ever owning this piece....? Old age?

Enjoy,
Howard

Attached Images

  • sundog.fac.jpg


#45 Howard Kelley

Howard Kelley
  • Members
    • Member ID: 389
  • 662 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Texas

Posted 31 January 2008 - 03:35 PM

Here's one from my VN Army Aviation collection.

The Forward Air Controller's Association has the following information on their Web site:

With the 1st US Infantry Division and attached units there were FACs assigned at five locations. At Di An, there were an ALO, an airlift operations officer, a reconnaissance operations officer, and a fighter operations officer. Their callsigns were Sidewinder 1, 2, 4, and 3 respectively. With the 1/4 Cavalry at Phu Loi there was an ALO/ FAC with the callsign Sidewinder 10. With the 1st Brigade at Phuoc Vinh there were two ALOs with the callsigns Sidewinder 11 and 12. With the 1/28th Battalion, 1/26th Battalion, and 1/2nd Battalion at Phuoc Vinh there was one FAC each with the callsigns Sidewinder 13, 14, and 15 respectively. With the 2nd Brigade at Bien Hoa there were two ALOs with the callsigns Sidewinder 21 and 22. With the 2/18th Battalion, the 2/16th Battalion, and the 1/18th Battalion at Bien Hoa there was one FAC each with the callsigns Sidewinder 23, 24, and 25 respectively. With the 3rd Brigade at Lai Khe there were two ALOs with the callsigns Sidewinder 31 and 32. With the 2/28 Battalion, the 1/16th Battalion, and the 2/2nd Battalion at Bien Hoa there was one FAC each with the callsigns Sidewinder 33, 34, and 35 respectively.

Cheers,
HK

Attached Images

  • 1st.Avn.Bde.FAC33.1a__Small_.JPG


#46 rje71

rje71
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,222
  • 19 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 31 January 2008 - 05:54 PM

21st TASS and the patch is from the late 71/72 time frame ..

RJ

Found another piece in my photo archives.

I have no recollection of ever owning this piece....? Old age?

Enjoy,
Howard



#47 Mike Tucker

Mike Tucker
  • Inactive
    • Member ID: 405
  • 238 posts

Posted 01 February 2008 - 10:55 AM

Thought you might like to know what the writing at the bottom of the Sidewinder 33 patch means. "No seat, we eat this sit up" (WETSU).

#48 River Patrol

River Patrol

    MODERATOR

  • Moderators
    • Member ID: 364
  • 2,172 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Baltimore, MD

Posted 11 February 2008 - 07:09 PM



Steve,

here's Vandy's original patch. There's some differences in most patches I see.
Vandy_Powell__s_original_patch0001_compressed.jpg



So only 6 of these original patches were made, yet there seem to be plenty of these mint, hand-embroidered ones around for sale (like the patch I show at the begining of this thread). And all these mint, hand-embroidered ones I've seen were never sewn to a uniform. Hmmmmm.

How many men used these patches and over what length of time? I wonder......

#49 CCKen

CCKen
  • New Members
    • Member ID: 2,148
  • 18 posts

Posted 18 November 2009 - 05:23 PM

So only 6 of these original patches were made, yet there seem to be plenty of these mint, hand-embroidered ones around for sale (like the patch I show at the begining of this thread). And all these mint, hand-embroidered ones I've seen were never sewn to a uniform. Hmmmmm.

How many men used these patches and over what length of time? I wonder......


Nothing like bringing an old thread back alive.

I'm sure those patches were copied many times over; however they were limited in use. I've just asked Vandy how many FACs wore that patch and over what period of time. I'm sure his memory of this matter would only be effective for the period of time he served in VN, 64/65.

Concerning the small F-19 patch, it said that: The plain F-19 patch (without the scrolling) was the original (62 or earlier). The Army Advisors wore a scalloped patch with stars on a field of blue and the F-19 patch in the same colors was designed for the FAC advisors. At that time, F-19 was the fledgling VNAF designation for the L-19.

Attached Images

  • MAAGV.jpg


#50 Bluehawk

Bluehawk
  • Members
    • Member ID: 3,976
  • 5,750 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:SoCal

Posted 18 November 2009 - 05:46 PM

Certain USAF enlisted were wearing that MAAG-VN set too, in 1963 and probably earlier when attached to Army, at least at Da Nang and Bien Hoa.


0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users


In Memory of Co-Founder GREG MILLS ROBINSON, a.k.a. "Marine-KaBar"
(February 17, 1949 - March 5, 2011)