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  1. thanks for the rolling insights everyone .. Aznation - fascinating to see that Leonardo NASA patch.. just adds more intrigue .. the name on the leather plate is definitely 'K. C. Matyi'.. our Spec 4 from 1962-65.. as for the medal ribbons - not sure if the NG ones you were thinking of were the third row, but the second and the third on the third row are lesser-seen Vietnam - RVN Civil Actions Medal, and the RVN Special Service Medal. The 4th row of ribbons, campaign ribbons, these are all loose and not fixed to the block of 3 rows. Can the DUI tell us anything ? '1st SOMCOM'(Trojan Horse) , 'Special Warfare Centre', and then 'Space Command' ? I'm not entirely sure what the roles of these groups were.. By rights this group should all date to the 80s, as suggested by the black backing to the 5th SF beret shield. P
  2. Thanks for all the feedback everyone. The reason I bought this grouping was because, frankly, it seemed hard to make sense of and in that sense struck my curiosity. Glad to see I am not the only one baffled by this group. My initial reading was that the medal ribbons, insignia etc looked like an SF VN soldier, fairly experienced enough to be a master paratrooper, aviator, to have the SVN para wings with additional jump star, CIB with star, Ranger qualified etc. That part of the insignia all makes sense to me, and suggests an experienced officer or NCO If the medal ribbons are correct, then silver stars, bronze stars, 2 purple hearts, etc and various VN service medals all suggest a certain career. I agree however that some of the ribbon devices seem inconsistent. I agree Matyi has to be a rare name, but an EM doing 3 years 62-65 does not to me look like the guy who wore this insignia. I will be the first to admit the astronaut / NASA connection seems really bizarre, that's why I bought the group. Came out of a collection in Japan that is being dispersed so I have no earlier history. To my eye, all the pieces are of the same approx age and look like they have spend a long time together, somewhere damp. To me everything looks circa 1970/80s, however the sterling para wings I suspect might be older. These in themselves are odd with the gold wreath. But at the root of whatever this group is, are the patches with the Matyi name - one a leather tag with army aviator and master para badges, the other a custom woven NASA patch with the Matyi name woven into it. So on that basis, if these really are legit - and not a Walter Mitty scenario - then there has to be some military / NASA link to this guy at least on the basis of these two patches. And on that basis, all the other assembled insignia, even also the SF and Space DUIs all have a certain logic when weighed against those two named patches. I have no aspirations for this group beyond cerebral exercise and the analysis of the bizarre - if there is a story to tell then I am all for it. Likewise, if this is a Walter Mitty group, then I appreciate the sum of its parts. Thanks for all the comments, Cheers P
  3. thank you all for the feedback and the insight. The 'KC Matsi' you ID'd Aznation - could be him, but would it make sense for a master paratrooper with extensive VN ribbons Silver Bronze Stars etc to only be a SP4 ? I'd have almost expected a higher rank with all that insignia. Astronaut wings - these are ok in fact, they have just suffered with exposure to damp as the rest of the group, they are a bit pitted from where the moisture eroded the plating and the patina has gone off. I realise these are USAF wings, but my understanding is that (apart from USN) these were the only astronaut wings available until the army astronaut wing was introduced in 1984. And after some online research I gather that to be awarded the wings you do not have to be a pilot, but that the wings are granted for being 'in space', ie above 50 miles high. If all that is correct, then my assumption would be that if you were 'in space' for whatever reason, then at least before 1984 then these would have been the wings you got if you were Army. The NASA patch - with the word 'Jump' I wonder if this might be something to do with Space Diving / Skydiving etc, which might make sense with the Master Para badge. The other name on that patch - 'Hawley' - seems to be a celebrated astronaut from the 80s, Space Shuttle missions etc. This is a really peculiar grouping, I know all the pieces belong together but trying to figure out the narrative is I guess what makes collecting fun.. cheers, P
  4. Hand-painted flag on satin. I had this for a few months before I realised that the skulls / skeletons and most of the lettering was done in luminous paint ! Can anyone see a purpose to this flag, or what (if anything) might be represented here ? all thoughts welcome P
  5. This is not Mitchell of course, but I saw the German M-43 style Mitchell cap earlier in this thread. Here another German-style cap but made from rubberised poncho, predecessor to Mitchell. Cap is non-reversible. Curiously, the style is exactly that of the WWII SS oakleaf camo cap, with high crown and centre seam to top. Well-worn and floppy, the cardboard inner to peak has completely crumbled.
  6. this one is fairly primitive manufacture, Vietnamese made I believe - for use somewhere wet / cold as the jacket has nylon parachute lining
  7. Odd jacket with integral backpack, zipper pocket on cuff. Also Japanese made
  8. Mitchell is my favourite of the camo patterns. A few custom jackets to follow - first an N-3 presume USN or maybe USMC use, Japanese made
  9. Grateful for opinions as to what the story might be with this collection. The pieces have always been together, and have suffered slightly from being stored somewhere damp. All the insignia is circa 1980s era, including the 5th SF badge now on the black backing. The veteran's name - K.C. Matyi - is on 3 name plates and also woven into the NASA patch alongside names Hawley and Fix. The leather name plate has Army Aviator and Master Para wings, faint to see. The CIB has lost all its blue paint. The RVN wings and Ranger badges are US 70/80s made. Not sure what the gold metal badge with parachute canopy, wings, crossed swords and dagger is. Various SF DUI, a Space Command DUI, and a MACV SOG DUI. I can't ID the red/blue stripe medal ribbon directly below the Air Force Cross. I believe the other two (green/red and red/white) in this row are South Vietnamese. The astronaut wings are regular pilot wings, with astronaut device applied - ie, not all one casting. More unusual are the sterling silver Master Para wings on 5th SF backing - these are older than the rest of the insignia, possibly 60s. But what is odd is that the wreath has been gilded / gold-painted. The whole of the reverse of the wings are also gilded / gold-painted. I can't find any reference to gilded wreaths on para wings, not sure if this has a particular relevance. Tried doing a google search for Matyi but found nothing. The NASA Jump Team patch is a total mystery to me - perhaps this relates to high-altitude para jumping, where I believe in some instances the Astronaut wings may be awarded. All thoughts welcome ! P
  10. I recently saw a tunic that I may have the chance to buy - I was unable to take a photo. The tunic is a regular standard lightweight summer cotton WWI rankers tunic, light tan. Not the heavy wool tunic. But to the upper left arm there is a magnificent bullion on horizon-blue French-made patch, with the helmet above crossed cannons that is the badge of the WW1 French Heavy Artillery - ie Tanks. From memory there might have been overseas chevrons, etc, and the collar brass appeared to be for Signals. Three Sgt rank stripes to the upper right arm, one arm only. Everything was all original, jacket really dusty condition. But what is interesting me is the tanks patch - can anyone reveal the significance of this French patch to a US uniform ? I guess it is for a unit that may have served alongside the French. Sorry, I don't have pictures to post .. P
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