Vietnam Recon Patrols along the Cambodian border in the 25th Infantry Division were much like the L.R.R.P. units, with less time spent accessing our targets.
L.R.R.P.’s (Long Range Reconnaissance Patrols) were, by design to not be heard or seen. The 25th Infantry Division used Reconnaissance units as their version of the L.R.R.P. teams. The big exception is we could be downsized to five man teams or used as a platoon for sweeps and disruptive measures for insurgency personnel.
Training was specialized and we had member’s that had gone to the Green Beret training school for “Recondo” training. The Recondo school was started by General William Westmoreland covered in other areas on this site follow the link for more information on the “Recondo School”.
The Wolfhounds Recon unit also was mobile with their own fleet of jeeps and
half ton vehicles. Platoons or teams could be dropped off and walk into targeted mission areas. This allowed Recon Platoon members to be moved quickly without helicopters and dropped at a secure distance from the mission target with minimal detection.
No helmets was a method to reduce noise and weight during missions. Floppy hats or berets were the normal head gear for the 25th Infantry Division Wolfhound Reconnaissance units. Not shown are security jeeps with post mounted M60 machine guns.
Rarely, if ever, did anyone wear sunglasses into the field. Stelman, located in the first jeep facing camera, found out why before leaving on this mission. He also was informed about head gear. The platoon leader gave him personal instruction. He wasn’t with our unit that long. Don’t remember why.
Vietnam Recon Patrols were the confirmation arm of intelligence gathering
and reporting methods. Our assignments were along the Cambodian border with a focus on Tay Ninh Province because of the Ho Chi Minh trail and the constant enemy activity. Our Recon Unit in particular suffered our greatest number of casualties and wounded in the Tay Ninh Province. Many 25th Infantry Division units lost men in the Tay Ninh Province. Considering some of the largest tunnel complexes were located in the Tay Ninh area.
This article is not meant in anyway to disrespect our L. R. R. P. brothers, we each had our roles, they did their’s to perfection.
Our Recon Patrols were designed to locate the enemy and caches of rice and weapons. Bring in the “Big Boys” gunships, jets, artillery and if needed divert ground troops if the enemy force was big enough.