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The History of An Hoa Combat Base and its AO
For the last 15 years I have been writing the history of the USMC at An Hoa Combat base in South Vietnam. During this time USMC Vietnam Veterans have joined the An Hoa Project, sharing their stories and photos. Without the Veterans’ input there would have been no 'real' history of their time in Vietnam. I would like to thank them for their help and their friendship.
For the history of An Hoa in PDF file format click The History of An Hoa link
The project was originally undertaken to gather facts on An Hoa. Little did I know that it would evolve into a healing project, helping Marines to come to terms with their war in South Vietnam. For those suffering from PTSD it was to be cathartic. The history of the USMC at An Hoa Combat Base has been researched by me using historic Marine Corps documents such as After-Action Reports and Command Chronologies. The stories of combat and life in the bush comes from the Veterans themselves. Access to this website is FREE.
With the help of my wife Ruth, I am in the process of re-writing the history to add more information. We have completed 1966 and it is online. We are now working on 1967. Please be patient for the remaining years as we have a lot to do and we can only work on this in the little spare time that we have around our demanding full-time jobs.
WARNING: These are true war stories from the most savage war of the 20th Century and some contain things that may upset those of a nervous disposition or those who are easily offended. These stories are not suitable for children under the age of 16 years.
Add to the project
If you want to add stories or photos to the An hoa Project please read our terms and conditions. You keep your copyright. This permission is not exclusive, so you can continue to use the material in any way including allowing others to use it. When the project finally winds down you will be asked if you want to give your copyright to the USMC as the project will be donated to them in the end. Please read the FAQ page for more information. Think about adding your stories or photos as over the last 15 years we have lost some brothers from the project. The sad fact is that Vietnam Vets are dying far younger than the WWII or Korean War Vet. This history project gives you the chance to tell your story and it will be kept on file to tell the story to other generations when we are gone.
The An Hoa Project is not a charity, it is one man's quest to tell the story of the Marines that served in the An Hoa AO. The project is to help them and others understand their war in Vietnam. At the end of the project, all information will be handed to the USMC Historical Division Quantico*. They already hold information that I sent them a few years ago. Tell your story and add to the history of the USMC in Vietnam.
* All contributors all be asked if they want to give their stories /photos to the Corps when that time comes. If they do not that is fine with me.
What some say about the An Hoa Project
I was one of many Marines who served at fire base, An Hoa, in 1968 and 1969. Now that I have had a chance to look over Alan's collection, I have a renewed understanding and knowledge of the period I lived through. I wanted to take a moment to thank Alan for his gift to me about the past that I never knew.
William R. Withycombe Whiskey Battery 2/11
The history of An Hoa Combat Base by Alan Waugh is a great and long work for Alan. Alan devoted over 10 years to this work. There is so much history, pictures and more it is hard to believe he put it all together. And for me personally, I know all Marines whom served at An Hoa have some thing that will remain forever in history long after we are all gone, and many of us have already gone. This is a great tribute to all whom paid the ultimate price at An Hoa and Quang Nam Province so long ago.
To me it seems like yesterday and it was 46 years ago. So who could remember this war? You have to be up there in years. So this is a great work for the generations to come and what happened at An Hoa will live on forever and hopefully be honoured and remembered for their sacrifices. I can't ask for anymore than that.
Thank you Alan for making the Marines at An Hoa a part of history it is a great honor for all Marines.
William Foster* , 81 Mortar Platoon Dec 1966- Jan 1968
*William passed away on June 18 2013 and was a active member of the An Hoa Project.
Of the many accounts covering the years of the United States' involvement in combat in the Republic of Vietnam, most authors concentrated on specific battles, campaigns or units. Alan Waugh has taken a different approach. He has focused his efforts on a specific area of operation centered on the then fledgling industrial complex of An Hoa located to the south-west of Da Nang. The time frame spans from 1966 to 1971 and introduces the reader to all the participants - both US and VC/NVA - who fought in the rice fields, villages, and neighboring mountains.
Extensive research of military archives to include after action reports, command chronologies and official documentation provides the framework for the account which, by itself, provides accuracy but no life. Alan remedied this to the reader's delight by including the personal human experiences of Marines and Corpsmen who toiled, sweated, and bled while performing their duty for their country and for their fellow team, squad, and platoon members.
A tribute to Alan's persistence and depth of his research is the inclusion of input from the Vietnamese director of the An Hoa Industrial Complex from 1962 to 1969. This coal-iron facility was the reason the US command commuted Marines to the basin. Also included is input from Dale Dye, actor, writer and military advisor to Hollywood, who has written an account of his time at An Hoa as a Marine Combat correspondent. But we must not forget the stories from the Grunts on the ground who after their tour returned home to restart their lives after the ordeal of savage combat in Vietnam. It is for them and those who did not return that this history has been written by Alan. It is a tribute to the warriors of many years ago who were proud to serve the US Marine Corps.
George D. Navadel
Colonel USMC Ret. (1958 -88)
RVN '66-'67; ''71-''72
Notes: George D Navadel is a highly respected & decorated Marine who won the Silver Star and Bronze Star with 'V' while in Vietnam