Stories from a hill in Vietnam named after a primate

Mike Hoyt as a much younger and greener Navy officer.

In 1968-1969 I was a U.S. Navy press escort officer in I Corps, comprising the northernmost provinces in South Vietnam. This is a fancy title for navy PR guy. My job entailed taking reporters and TV film crews around to cover navy and marine operations in this lively part of the war. It was a great gig, really. It was a combination of humor, pathos and sometimes sheer terror. Mostly, it was a showcase of the human spirit in all its aspects: Good and bad. These stories are taken from my forty-year-old notes and from a mostly faulty memory, so there will be inaccuracies. And like most “war stories” they get better with the telling. I urge readers to weigh in and add stories of their own and, most of all, to help me fix mistakes. And to everyone: Welcome to Monkey Mountain!

- Mike Hoyt


One Response to Stories from a hill in Vietnam named after a primate

  1. charlie silver says:

    We could see Monkey Mountain from China Beach and Marble Mountain where I flew CH-46′s, 53′s, Cobra’s, and Huey’s in 1970. Occasionally, we would fly over to Monkey Mountain and use the rotor wash to uncover some of the local primates (not Navy types). Marble was a wasteland next to the beach. Drinks in the O club were 25c, six doubles (the standard order) were $3. The standard joke, though we never practiced it, was Navy rules state 24 hours from bottle to throttle while the Marine rule was 24 feet. Post some photos from all those 35mm slides you took, dai wee.

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