The Reasoner Patrol
Please note that the original copies of these reports are in very poor condition. I have retyped this information with a diligence for accuracy. It is reproduced here as recorded.
The following information is taken from Operation Order 124-65 dated 101100 July 1965 and Debrief SCAT A (After Action Report) 121530 July 1965. History and Museums USMC, Washington DC.
Ref: (a) Map Trung Phan, 1:50000, Sheets 6658 IV
Time Zone: H
CoA 3rdReconBn. - 1stLt Reasoner
1st Plt CoA (Reinf) - 2ndLt Henderson
2nd Plt CoA (-) (Reinf) - 2ndLt Maccaskill
Hq Sec CoA (-) - 1stLt Collet
a. Enemy Forces. Current ISUM's
b. Friendly Forces. Current OPSUM's & PIR's
c. Attachments. Five ARVN soldiers & two (2) scout dogs.
CoA (-) will conduct area Reconnaissance of TAOR's 3 and 4 from 12 July through 14 July utilizing day and night foot patrols in conjunction with daytime OP's.
a. Concept of operation. The 1st and 2nd Plts of CoA w/attachments will leave LZ Finch 121500. The 1st Plt will land at Dai Loc and the 2nd Plt at LZ PELICAN. The plts will then carry out their assigned missions returning to the pickup points NLT 171700H.
b. 1st Plt w/ attachments. Will leave Dai Loc 121700 and move on assigned patrol route moving to C.P. #2 by 131200. Leave C.P. #3 by 132200 and arr LZ Parrot 140600, remain at LZ Parrot until helo pickup 141700.
c. 2nd Plt w/ attachments. Will leave LZ PELICAN 121700 and move to platoon patrol base. 2A34 will leave the patrol base 130500 and move on patrol returning NLT 132200. 2A12 will leave the PB NLT 130600 and return to the patrol base NLT 132400. The 2nd Plt will leave the PB 141200 returning to LZ PELICAN NLT 131700 for pickup.
d. Hq Section. Will have two radio operators at Dai Loc to act as a relay station and 5 personnel at 3d Marines C.P. to act as a monitorial station and liasion group.
4. ADMINISTRATION AND LOGISTICS.
a. 1st Plt lift from LZ FINCH to Dai Luc 121500 Pickup at LZ PARROT 141700 return to LZ FINCH.
b. 2nd Plt helo lift from LZ FINCH to LZ PELICAN 121500. Pickup LZ PELICAN 141700 return to LZ FINCH.
c. 3dRecon SOP pertaining to supply services and personnel pertaining to company size operations.
5. COMMAND AND COMMUNICATION -ELECTRONICS.
a. 3dReconBn SOP for communications pertaining to company sized operations.
b. All stations report each hour on the hour and at other times deemed necessary. Position reports will be asked for using the code "BRAVO REPORT". A report of "ALL SECURE", SITUATION REMAINS THE SAME" WILL BE REPORTED "Alpha Sierra Sierra Romeo Sierra"
c. Freq FM P-43.6 A-51.9 change " Flip Flop"
d. Thrust Line : 9070
e. E & E: "Make Tracks"
f. Authentication: lity-staye
g. UBC: Black Night, 1st Letter Starting with The Day Of The Month. Change Daily at 0001.
h. Company Commander with 1A.
First Lieutenant U.S. Marine Corps
Copy 2 of 5 Copies
Company A, 3dReconBn
Da Nang, VN
121530 H July 1965
DESIGNATION OF PATROL: SCAT A
MAPS: 6658 IV
SIZE AND COMPOSITIONOF PATROL: 2 Officers, 15 Enlisted, and 1 Corpsman.
MISSION: Area reconnaissance RAOR-4
TIME OF DEPARTURE: 121530 H July 1965
TIME OF RETURN: 122130 H July 1965
ROUTE: See Overlays
121730 July 65, Cordinate 922602, Received 20 rounds of sniper fire. Returned fire and attempted pursuit with no success.
121815 July 65, Cordinate 927608, Flushed enemy position. Defended by estimated enemy company. Received MG, A/W, and small arms fire from three sides. Returned fire and knocked out one MG with four rounds M-79. Called for helo evac and fought back to LZ. Picked up at LZ at approximately 2115.
OTHER INFORMATION: See enclosure one (1) statement of LCpl F.L. Murray, PFC H.L. Pannel; Pfc. K.R. Hahn; Cpl. B. C. Collins; Pfc Gatlin.
See Enclosure (2) sketch of zone of action and positions.
See Enclosure (3) chronological report of all messages received from Co. A.
Upon approaching the village of AN MY (3) the platoon was split into two teams with Lt. Henderson to approach the village and Lt. Reasoner to continue along the road. Upon reaching the village the first two houses approached were apparently deserted. Continued past and hedge row and discovered a family of eight hidden in a protective hole. At this time we determined that we had located something and then we started to receive AW fire from two sides. Lt. Henderson received word from Lt. Reasoner to withdraw towards the LZ south of us and at that time Lt. Reasoner and the remainder of the platoon started to receive MG and A/W fire from three sides. SSgt Knee the platoon sergeant was with Lt. Henderson and was WIA early in the firing. LCpl. Shockley was with Lt. Reasoner and was the enxt Marine WIA. Lt. Reasoner attempted to make his way to Shockley under heavy fire from the machine gun that had the area bracketed. It was at this time that Lt. Reasoner received gun shot wounds. The platoon fought its way from its position carrying the WIA's with them and all that was left behind was one (1) M-14 with the bolt removed; One (1) PRC-10 radio set that had been shot in two aand in an inoperable condition and six packs.At approximately 2115 the platoon was evacuated by helicopter under heavy fire from all sides.
8. RESULTS OF ENCOUNTER WITH THE ENEMY:
Estimated strength of VC company 75-125. From reports from members of the platoon it is fixed that there were 13 VC KIA and a probable 4 more KIA. Three to five were from the results of the M-79 rounds and the remainder from rifle fire. An unknown number of VC WIA resulted from the throwing of grenades.
9. CONDITION OF PATROL, INCLUDING ..............unreadable..........OR WOUNDED.
One (1) KIA (Lt. Reasoner); three (3) WIA (LCpl Shockley; SSgt Knee; LCpl Hall) all to C&C. Remainder of patrol all good.
10. CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS: Platoon apparently flushed an enemy company that was possibly preparing for an attack on thee HQ located at DAI LUC.
It is recommended that the TE of the Reconnaissance Battalion be modified to include two M-79's per platoon.
W.T. Henderson 2ndLt USMC
11. ADDITIONAL COMMENTS BY DEBRIEFER: It is possible that the VC attack was conducted by the company mentioned in I Corps ISUM #190 para 2.L.The VC contacted were noted to wear steel helmets and of particular note was the fact that all appeared to be wearing ponchos. In this particular patrol the scout dogs did not perform as well as expected as indicated from previous use.
J.R. LEMIEUX GySgt. USMC Bn S-2
NOTE: THE ALPHA RECON ASSOCIATION has copies of the supporting statements used in the issuance of the Medal of Honor Award and the other personal decorations for Gallantry in Action during this patrol. Also in our possession is the hand drawn diagram of the zone of actions and positions of both enemy and USMC. Additionally we have the written radio transmission log which is a chronological report on all messages received.
These documents are not displayed on this website.
Frank Stanley Reasoner was Awarded The Medal Of Honor.
He was the first Marine to Receive the Medal Of Honor in Viet-Nam.
Name : First Lietenant Frank Stanley Reasoner 085378 USMC
Organization: Company "A" 3d Reconnaissance Battalion, 3d Marine Division (Rein), Vietnam
Date and Place of Birth: September 16, 1937 Spokane, Washington
Summary Of Service
Enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps on June 2, 1955
Graduate of U.S. Military Academy West Point July 58 - June 62
Student The Basic School July 62 - Jan 63
Reconnaissance Platoon Commander Co B 3d Reconnaissance Battalion, January 63 - May 65
Reconnaissance Platoon Commander Co A 3d Reconnaissance Battalion, May 65 - June 65
Commanding Officer Company A 3d Reconnaissance Battalion, June 65 - July 65
The following Marines also were personally decorated for Valor.
Cpl. Bryant C. Collins
Pfc. Thomas Gatlin
2nd Lt. William Henderson
LCpl. Freddie L. Murray
USS Reasoner - FF 1063
Authorized: July 22, 1964 Builder: Lockheed Shipbuilding & Construction Co., Seattle, Wa. Laid Down: January 6, 1969 Launched: August 1, 1970 Commissioned: January 31, 1971 Decommissioned: August 28, 1993 Fate: Lease to Turkey (8-30-93) F252 Kocatepe Lease renewed August 29, 1997