Photos Main Page

Lyman K. Swenson Photos
1960-1969

Page 30


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Photos and commentary courtesy of:

Ron Gerber, LTjg
Jan 64-Nov 66


Gunfire support, Vietnam 1965


These photos were taken in 1965 during one of the first shore bombardments of the war, off the coast of North Vietnam.
We fired so many "6 guns, 4 salvos, fire for effect" that we burned up all of our 5" barrels and had to go to Subic
to have them replaced. You can see the paint peeling in the photos. The concussions from all that shooting shook
loose the rust and debris inside the ventilation system so that when we secured from GQ and turned the fans on,
soot was blown everywhere. It took many days to clean up. On the bright side, we had thousands of brass shell
casings to trade to Mary Soo in Hong Kong and she and her girls painted the entire ship while most of the crew
went ashore.
 
I was the OOD for GQ and had an excellent view of everything. I found that when Mount 52 was firing at a certain angle,
I could actually see the shells as they arched toward the target! Looked like footballs spiraling through the air. I'll always
remember that.
 

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