The True Story of the Marines of Mike 3/5 in Vietnam, 4 September 1967
Monday, 4 September 1967
Marine Lance Corporal Jack Swan crested the face of a bare, rocky knoll in
the Que Son Valley of South Vietnam. Following Swan were the 164 Marines of
Mike Company, Third Battalion, Fifth Marines, First Marine Division. Their
mission was to locate and rescue two understrength and isolated companies
of felow Marines who were under attack by the North Vietnamese Armv
The sight of a quiet and serene rice paddy and shrub covered valley greeted
Swan. Too serene, he thought, as he caught sight of a trembling bush. "I think
I just saw that bush move!" he shouted. "If it moves again, shoot it!" his squad
leader commanded he bush moved Swan hired. and the hush went down
Then hell on earth broke loose.
Rocket-propelled grenades, AK-47 fire, mortars, and machine guns engulfed
the exposed Marines. The vaunted 2nd NVA Division, six thousand, five hundred
men strong and expertly camouflaged, had sprung their well-laid trap.
Instead of coming to the rescue of their embattled comrades, it was now the
men of Mike 3/5 who were about to be annihilated. Burdened with a rifle, the
M16, that would often malfunction, how could they hope to beat back a vastly
superior foe bent on their destruction?
Outnumbered, out-gunned, and exposed, would any of the men of Mike 3/5 survive?