The Battle of Chu Moor Mountain
By Charlie Shyab
We attacked the mountain on the 26, 27 and 28th April 1968. Each time taking casualties. On the evening of the 27th we received orders to attack the hill on the 28th no matter how many men were left! When we heard that we figured it was all over for us and that we would lose our lives. As senior medic I knew I had to be with my men.
On the morning of the 28th I found a place to read my New Testament and prayed to the Lord that I knew I could do nothing to save myself and that if he saw fit to save me I would serve him by being a teacher according to His will! When the command came for us to leave our bunkers to attack the hill a jet was dropping a 500 LB bomb on the mountain. The NVA used the sound to cover the mortar noise as we were moving up. About 20 ft. away I saw a flash and felt my right hand go numb just like you do when you bump your elbow. I thought I had just lost my hand but I looked down and it was still there; I knew I was hit so I returned to the bunker and told the 1st Sergeant I was hit. He lifted my right collar and his eyes got big as he confirmed the injury. I was also hit in the other arm and both legs but I did not know that. The medevac chopper came in with 3 gunships to cover us and suppress any NVA fire. Of the 120 men in the company, 30 were KIA and 15 were choppered out; the 70 injured were treated by their fellow soldiers or medics.
My friend Richard Cassano escorted me to the LZ to help load the wounded; he never made it back to his foxhole!
Another great medic, Bud Roach, came in to replace me when I left. Come to find out that there were no other medics on the ground and that I was the last one to leave till he arrived to evacuate the rest of the men.
When the chopper landed at the aid station the corpsmen did not move because we were such a sight; me with no helmet just a boonie hat, sunglasses, a 5 day beard and a messy uniform. The sergeant ordered them to get the wounded off because they were hesitant to be in such a mess. Inside the station they thought I was a hippy and moved me to a corner to protest the war!