"Rat Pack 16"  10/66-3/67
Miami, FL

  Red Bar Line

Bob Moberg's "Shot Down With Robbie" Story

When Bob Moberg finally wrote his story "Shot Down With Robbie" I felt a sense of pride for I had sent him my version of the story, many years later, suggesting he re-write and edit my version.  In rather typical Moberg fashion he threw my story out calling it "fiction" but it prompted him to write his own story about the event which you can find in either the "Stories" section of our web site or in Bob's special tributes' Died After Tour(DAT) stories. Bob sent his revised version back to me and I sent it to the VHPA magazine where it was published. 

But, the rest of the story has never been written to my knowledge.  So, here it is as I remember it: 
When Bob and Eldon Smith returned to the Nha Trang villa, shortly after the shoot-down, those of us present at the villa congregated on the second floor in Bob's bunk room to hear his and Eldon's first-hand account of what really happened.  Their story then was the same as the one published years later in the VHPA magazine, previously mentioned.
The same night these two warriors returned from combat they imbibed in a few undiluted liquors of their personal choice with their villa mates. This drinking added to the adrenalen rush which they were still experiencing as a result of their close brush with disaster.
Around ten to eleven P.M. Bob and Eldon felt an urgent need to relieve their anxieties.  They disappeard for a time and returned shortly in their jungle fatigues, sloppy jungle hat and combat boots. Camouflage paint was added to their faces. No weapons! Bob and Eldon had determined that they were going to litteraly raise hell in the darker environs of Nha Trang. They were gone for several hours and by their own admission had gone to the red-light district which was too quiet and needed some noise and activity. They later told us how they had harrassed the red-light district breaking windows, kicking in doors and other juvenile actions.  And since they weren't detected and got home safely "all was well."  It appeared to the rest of us in the villa that Bob and Eldon had expended the necessary bravado to help settle them back to "normal". 
Not so!  The two warriors had such a great time that night that they decided to repeat the activities the next night much to the surprise of their villa buddies. This included the alcohol swilling before the time of attack.  Our warriors departed the villa. Time passed and passed and passed.  Our two heroes did not return. 
In the wee hours of the morning the phone rang in the commanding officers bedroom (Major Bill Griffin).  He alerted several villa mates to accompany him.  It seems the MP's had captured our two warriors as they rounded a dark corner in the red light district and found a MP with his loaded .45 caliber pistol pointed at their noses. They went to jail.  Thus, the phone call.  Some time elapsed before Major Griffin returned with the dare-doers after explaining to the MP's the reason for celebration.
This is one of my favorite war stories.