Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Some Cobra Pilots were USA certified gung ho crazy.

I have come to the conclusion that there were three kinds of Cobra Pilots in Vietnam. Those who wanted to come home in one piece, those who wanted to curl up in a corner and wanted to be left alone, and those who were just plain out and out freaking A grade gung ho crazy.

These guys were so gung ho, they made John Wayne look like a poster child for the lame duck society.

These guys invented, patented and perpetuated road rage.

Get Lt.Jeffery Johns -- a relatively mild mannered -- supercharged with a fire mission and you better not slow him down. Yes, this is the same guy I went down to Da Nang with while headed to R&R together and that started a bond.

Yes, he chewed my ass off when I tell him to get out of the Cobra after he witnessed a midair collision over Firebase Nancy on a practice red alert and continues to do so going to and from the field medical tent.

And yes, we became the best of friends after that.

But when he was in one of those moments, I really didn't care for the Mr.Hyde version.

Three days before going home, we watch him check out some armament personnel because they were stopping him from getting into the chopper and flying off -- once again -- without a front seat. LT

Craig Gies and I were watching the drama unfold..

So he takes off. Returning minutes later with that same pod dangling for dear life on the back hook and securing apparatus. 18 rockets staring -- would the vector increase lift and spin? -- at the ground, protesting one pilots' inability to wait until the pod was correctly aligned.

I'm laughing. Craig Gies has a smirk on his face.

The thought of karma was making my ability to not stop laughing almost impossible to contain.

Trying to be a bit more composed, he walks by me, puts his hand on my shoulder.
"They're trying to kill me."

Any thoughts of composure left Vietnam.

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