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Anvil

Oklahoma

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Oh the memories.  That time when I got to shoot the 106 at Ft. Bragg I well remember pulling the center of the barrel adjustment wheel and yelling spotter when I fired the 50 BMG spotter round.  When it hit the deuce and a half on the range at 1500 meters I yelled main gun and punched the center of the wheel and I was in the middle of the biggest boom I ever felt.  I thought it was going to tear my britches off.  :banana: 

 

The SF group 106s were all on the trailer/tripod.  As the firer, you were sitting on the left leg of the tripod, and your spotter was on the right leg.  If you had a pic, you would have seen why you were in the middle of the biggest boom you ever felt - the fireball was curling back out of the 106, then forward and around you...  <lmao>

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After seeing an ONTOS fire a salvo of just 2 rounds of 106  many of us thought the safest place to be was NOT in the rear of that thang.

 

BY the way, the picture I posted is not of a real live M-50 ONTOS but of a model kit :Academy M50 Ontos Tank Destroyer Model Kit 1:35 I used it because it is the most detailed picture of an ONTOS the last production model in my gallery.  This model shows every option that was available. By the time our young Lance Cpls. had them setup to suit them and the crew they looked like a more stripped down versions. 

 

ontos_vietnam_700.jpg

 

This is an actual picture of an ONTOS and its crew at Chu Lai Beach in June 1st of 1965. The first time the ONTOS was used in combat was 1958 in Lebanon, It was de-activated by the USMC in 1969

 

I'm sorry I jacked your thread OKLAHOMA but the 106 recoilless rifle and the  M-50 ONTOS will always have a huge place in my old heart. But the young Marines that crewed the ONTOS and the difficult job they did under impossible conditions of combat in Vietnam have the most love and respect I can muster. I still tear up thinking about them....

Edited by mrmackc

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My friend it's no hijack that time shooting the 106 while setting on that tripod leg was an amazing experience.  Especially for an Air Force TSgt at the time.  That gun impressed the heck out of me BUT one thing I thought about after shooting it.  While it was a very deadly piece of equipment the signature if setting in one place would probably draw fire quite quickly.  I was glad I was not using it in time of war.  Of all the weapons I fired in those two days the 106 was to me the most impressive.  My hat too is off to those young men that crewed the ONTOS and those M40s on top.  I bet they had to keep moving to make sure a RPG didn't poke a hole in them.  I can't imagine being inside one when that stream of plasma would come through the wall.  As I remember the ONTOS was not very heavily armored. Definitely not a M1 Abrams. 

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It was the kind of stuff that Air Force guys just never got to do, so I really considered myself very lucky.   

You aint kidding.  I was in from 82 - 86 and all I got to shoot was once with the RNLAF shooting Uzi(s).  Squirrely damn weapons, but a hell of a lot of fun.  Other than that I spent my entire 4 years in with my weapons card stamped "Orientation only - Individual not qualified to bear arms".  One of the main reasons I did my 4 years and left.  We had 1 day of dry fire and one day of wet fire shooting the M16A1 with the .22 rimfire adapter in BMT.  Absolutely ridiculous.

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aca13218_2_large.jpg?v=1428684101

I would hate to have one of these things after me.  Absolute freakin' nightmare.

Edited by GRA

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You aint kidding.  I was in from 82 - 86 and all I got to shoot was once with the RNLAF shooting Uzi(s).  Squirrely damn weapons, but a hell of a lot of fun.  Other than that I spent my entire 4 years in with my weapons card stamped "Orientation only - Individual not qualified to bear arms".  One of the main reasons I did my 4 years and left.  We had 1 day of dry fire and one day of wet fire shooting the M16A1 with the .22 rimfire adapter in BMT.  Absolutely ridiculous.

This is exactly why when we would go out for field training I would take my agressors out to a range on Ft Bragg and give them a chance to shoot their M-16s full auto.  Most of the time it was the only time they got the chance to.  The ammo I used was given to me by Army units I had befriended and they found out it was easier to give it to me than to turn it back in.  When we did it however to prevent mistakes I would only take 1, magazine and 1 rifle with us to the range so we could make sure that live ammo never got mixed in with the blanks that we used to play war with. It wasn't much but it was more than the typical Air Force guy.  Working at Cumberland Knife and Gun gave me a bunch of connections and made my time at Pope AFB great.  In the 3 years I worked there I never made a penny.  I spent it all on Guns, ammo and knives.    

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"This is exactly why when we would go out for field training ... "

 

Y'all were lucky.  The only "field training" I ever got was when we did Tac Evals which consisted of putting on your NBC suit, helmet and carrying your gas mask and canteen around for 72 hours once every 90 days.  We were not allowed in POL to be security augmentees because our war-time AFSC was the same as our peace-time AFSC.  I did my 4 years honorable and got out.  Not one time since have I ever allowed myself to be put in a position of any kind where I was wearing somebody's uniform while unarmed.

Edited by GRA

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My first two years in the Air Force I was in "intelligence" as a Morse Code Operator.  Other wise known as a ditty bop.  4 swings, 4 mids, 4 days and 3 days off.  I was stationed at RAF Chicksands in England.  It was the longest two years of my life.  After that I was able to cross train into Civil Engineering into the Entomology shop.  It's where I was meant to be I guess because for the most part I loved it until I made MSgt and the politics got old.  Being a gun person I always ended up being the guy in charge of checking the rifles back in after an exercise.  Since we used blanks there was a lot of carbon to clean out.  When I was stationed at Pope AFB in 1981 1/2 the rifles had performance problems when issued for field training.  Just a problem with lack of maintenance.  The guys at the SAMTO (Small arms training)  gave me a sack of M-16 parts to fix anything. After making sure all the guns were cleaned properly and bad parts were replaced the next field training exercise we had 100% working rifles.  From then on our commanders cut me a lot of slack when it came to getting training with explosives and other weapons.  I was in hog heaven.  The only other people that I knew of that were able to get that training were Forward Air Controllers.  Man I sure feel sorry for our modern military.  Morale has to be at an all time low.  

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The only other people that I knew of that were able to get that training were Forward Air Controllers.  Man I sure feel sorry for our modern military.  Morale has to be at an all time low.  

 

When I was in the economy was so bad none of these jobs were available.  People enlisted while taking anything they could get.  I never saw ANY opportunities for stuff like this the whole 4 years I was in.  Everybody was sticking with what they had just to have a job.  Cross-training was extremely limited and you always had to agree to go in broad and open.  I was never that stupid.

 

Regarding this issue, the morale was low back then and from what I understand it hasn't changed.

 

I once completed a survey in there right after I finally hit E-4.  I can't remember exactly the question but I made the suggestion that ALL USAF personnel should be given SP augmentee  training regardless of their primary AFSC, enlisted or commissioned.  I also stated that before anyone went overseas they should be given Air Base Ground Defense training and should have to qualify.  When the E-5(s) and above in our section found out I suggested that they asked me what was "wrong" me and why I would suggest such a thing ... ( ???)  I told them if they liked getting shot at without being able to shoot back they needed some serious evaluation.

 

When they asked why I declined to test for E-5 and/or re-enlist I reminded them of our previous conversations.  Sadly I don't think they ever understood what I was talking about.  IMHO ... every bit as sad as the corrupt E-7(s) that all voted way back when to do away with USAF Warrant Officer ranks in exchange for only 2 more higher NCO ranks (Senior and Chief).  This was about as ridiculous as being unarmed and never firearms trained.

 

Guess they were the same fools who went along with the ignorant idea of doing away with the 1505(s) ... ( ???) 

 

Idiots ... complete idiots.

Edited by GRA

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GRA, man I am glad I joined the Marines and got to take long walks in the boonies,  carry a pack, sleep outdoors and take a crap in the woods and run up and down hills. I was assigned my very own US rifle 30 cal M1 and a bayonet.  We were even taught how to take it apart and put it together in the dark and got to go shoot at the rifle range several times a year. Once I even got to sleep with it in my bunk! We even got to eat C-rations and drink coffee out of a metal cup that blistered my lips once.

 

Every day was a holiday and every meal was a banquet!...AJ Squared away, work hard every day... I love the Marine Corps!

Edited by mrmackc

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We dealt with a lot of the same stuff but without weapons and the humps, overnighters.  Never any real range time.

 

Believe me, we did get to enjoy the great outdoors in my AFSC.   :))

 

We did not have hot water to make coffee or any way to heat our meals.  We were prohibited from having any heating elements in our area.  C-rations were not bad when cold but when the MRE(s) came out we had no hot water to reconstitute more than half the meal.

Edited by GRA

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Only occasionally did we have time to use the canned heat to have hot coffee or hot chow, after I went to artillery at 29 Palms we would sometimes have hot chow, via a field kitchen. I think the food service bunch used us for a training exercise.

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Canned heat ... WHAT CANNED HEAT ... ???  The only "Canned Heat" I remember was an awesome rock and roll band.

 

None of the first MRE(s) had any sort of heating capabilities.  If you ate any of it hot you either soaked the sealed package in hot water or you reconstituted various dehydrated items with hot water.  We were not allowed any heating element, etc., whatsoever.  This is NOT good when you're on the flightline all day / night in the Netherlands, the land of 60 degree summers.

 

And I don't know what all has changed with USAF chow, but to date the best military meal I ever had was breakfast at a US Army field kitchen in West Germany, and that was just once.

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They often sent cooks out in the field with us and the food was pretty good.  We even had the 3 trash cans filled with water and immersion heaters to clean our mess kits.  Sometimes they even  served us steak.  When I first came in we were issued C-Rations and soon went to MREs.  We had lots of names for them but they really were much better than C-Rations and most of the time when we were issued them we had that little self heating packet. In my later years in Germany we didn't have field training and instead I was on a BDAT team. (Bomb Damage Assessment Team)  We would ride around base after a simulated attack to figure out what we would have to do to get certain facilities back to service. I sure got tired of wearing chemical gear.  

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55 minutes ago, COBrien said:

So, umm, any guys from OK still hanging around here?

I dont think so...the smart ones moved to Texas...the dumb azzes moved to Kansas :laffs:    Wash

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I wuz borned in Tonkawa OK ,but my daddy moved us to Texas so I could

get an edukasion and make mysef a good living!

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On 5/23/2016 at 2:44 PM, mrmackc said:

I wuz borned in Tonkawa OK ,but my daddy moved us to Texas so I could

get an edukasion and make mysef a good living!

The education thing is no joke -- we're something like 48th or 49th in the nation when it comes to education...

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1 hour ago, COBrien said:

The education thing is no joke -- we're something like 48th or 49th in the nation when it comes to education...

Back in 1943 when I left in the first grade Oklahoma had some good schools and some not so good. Texas was about the same, I was just joking. Usually the rural schools are better. Except for extracurricular stuff

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6 minutes ago, mrmackc said:

Back in 1943 when I left in the first grade Oklahoma had some good schools and some not so good. Texas was about the same, I was just joking. Usually the rural schools are better. Except for extracurricular stuff

I knew you were -- but it's more true now than ever...

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Fun thread from you fellas.   I'm in the OKC area.    Been here since 1978.  Got out of the Marine Corps in 76 and moved down from Idaho.   Man I remember the night I pulled into town pulling my u-haul with my old ford.    Thought I'd descended into the depths of hell.   Sitting on a Marine Corps buddies porch at 10pm that first night it was still 95 degrees and found myself thinking "Lord, what have I done"?   

But the kids came, roots got established pretty deep and it wasn't till 1992 that I got back up north and bought some land.   In O5 I finished a log home back in the Idaho Panhandle enough to move in and have been living there now about half the year.     Odd life looking at a moose yards away from your window in one place and then back down to your cul-d-sac in Ok.  

But I get to shoot matches here in early spring and late fall and then roam the Northwest shooting matches from Cheyenne to Lone Tree in Montana during the summer months.  

For my cast bullet/vintage gun stuff I met an old gent down at the range south of Norman and he gave me a lot of mentoring for casting and reloading for the vintage single shots.   I've had and M1A forever but now I'm venturing into the AR-10 world for the first time and I'm wishing he had some of that interest because once again I could stand some mentoring.  

I'll say one thing about Idaho and Oklahoma... at least they are both counted (for now) as the two most conservative voting states in the Union.  So far the left wingers from California have targeted Oregon, Washington and Texas and have not yet overwhelmed or polluted the politics in my two states.   Texas - look out, you are next.   Hold the line boys... is all I can say.   By the way, shoot a little down in Texas in April.   Got some good friends down there I shoot with and they are good folks - till we talk football:-)

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