Vietnam
Đà Nàng Air Base
35th APS, K-9 / 366th SPS K-9


K-9 Posting
by Don Poss
© 2001

Photo, right: Around August 1965, My K-9, Blackie (X129). Greatest monster dog ever.

I am standing in front of the Đà Nàng Growl Pad sign (handsome, ain't I). LTC Arthur G. Phillips Jr. had a construction crew build the sign. The night before the photo, I had popped a hand flare that had a triple charge, which sprained my wrist.

Perimeter Road, S/E: K-9 Guard Post at entrance to kennels. You can see the Growl Pad sign, center top, a water tank, and kennels offices.

K-9 Guardmount. I am in the front row, third from left. I'm looking at my watch, so I guess I had an important appointment to keep.

K-9 Handlers collect their Sentry Dogs from the Kennels. Access is via the outside, and not the center walk.

K-9 were often posted in this truck, or an open bed truck. Both could tow a trailer that carried several "caged" Sentry Dogs.

Photo inside the truck bed. Bullet and shrapnel holes are still visible from the night TSgt Jensen was KIA during his taking cover and engaging sappers with only his .38 revolver.

A1C Don Jones is pictured setting on a bench in the truck.

Perimeter


Perimeter Road, East area.


Perimeter Road, North and N/E, along the Marshland area.

A1C Al Watts patrols the Marshland perimeter road, on the left, with
A2C Don Poss, center, and A2C Gary Eberbach on the right across the road.

Perimeter Road, N/West.
Lee Miller patrols with Shep.


Perimeter Road, West:   K-9 are posted along the only active runway during 1965. A second runway is being constructed along the area the handlers are walking.

Later, the Handlers will be picked up near dawn. Flares are seen floating on the horizon and over Đà Nàng's S/E area.


Blackie and I are posted in the Ammo Dump. Spookiest post I ever worked. Used more pop-flares than a C-47. We were called Air Police then. On May 6, 1966, I had one heck of a firefight around one of the ammo bunkers one night when some sappers tried to penetrate the post. Blackie alerted--I didn't see a thing it was so dark--and then they started firing. I went through about three magazines in a heart beat. And it was over. The Strike Team was there in about 20 minutes but I made them stay out until I could get Blackie back. The Strike Team found blood trails and some expended AK47 shells.


Perimeter Road, West: Entrance to the Ammo Dump is eerie at dusk, and



pucker-factor nine
as the black of night falls.




Perimeter

Perimeter Road, S/West. K-9 fighting post along the runway. When raining it could quickly fill with water. When dry, it filled with things that go bump in the night.

Đà Nàng City (foreground), N/E of the Air Base, aglow with city lights. Đà Nàng Air Base (Rocket City) is awash in flare light. Freedom Hill 327, above and center, can be seen with perimeter lights snaking up the hill. The Marshland can be seen, center right, with flare light reflecting.

The USAF was the first service to use K-9 in Vietnam.

The USAF was the first service to use K-9 in Vietnam.
The USAF was the first service to use K-9 in Vietnam.

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