Lomax (center) and Mike 3/5 Marines
Lomax, Mike 3/5
I am a proud Confederate Southerner from Tennessee, who can
shoot straight and hit what I aim at. I could hit a tank turret
from 900 yards. I went to boot camp at Parris Island beginning
in Aug. 1967, Platoon 1032. I carried a 3.5 rocket launcher which
is basically a bazooka from the Korean War.
I was with 'Medevac Mike 3/5', 1stMarDiv beginning
the first of February 1968. As a matter of fact, as soon as I
got in-country, they loaded us on trucks, and they told
us we were headed for Hue. For some reason, we turned around on
the way, and returned close to Haivan Pass. I think 3/5 was to
guard this area, and Highway 1 around Lanco and Truoi Bridge.
especially remember on one dark, night hump, I was very green
and got half of Mike Company, maybe even the whole battalion,
lost in the boonies by going the wrong way at a split in the trail.
It was really hot and muggy, and my glasses fogged up. Nobody
called me a dumbass, even though the short-timers really wanted
to. They just told me I've got to be more careful. From then on,
many called me Climax. Why? I was afraid to ask.
pictures to enlarge)
Truoi River Bridge along Highway 1
Thua Thien Province between Danang, Phu Bai and Hue, early
Top: Ronnie Williams.
2nd Row: Left, Sam Cole, killed from gunshot wounds a week later,
(??) from a weapon's squad.
Bottom: (?), Willie Riviera, Correa, and (?).
Jerry Lomax and Ronnie Williams at Truoi River
Bridge, May 1, 1968
1 is to the left of the picture. Ronnie was the M-60 guy and Jerry
has the 3.5 rocket launcher. In the middle background is Hai Van
Pass; in the background right is where Mike Company got hit hard
a week later.
Sam Cole (KIA), Jerry Lomax, Willie Riviera
was wounded (gunshot) in the upper left arm on May 9, 1968 (at
1000). The bullet took out most of my muscle, and as I and others
were medevaced, the helicopter crashed (after being hit twice).
After this, I spent some time in the hospital in Okinawa, I think
it was Camp Kue. Gosh at the stories to tell from February 1 through
the end of my tour in March 1969. I spent 7 months recuperating
and working in Okinawa, and when I was sent back.
Catholic Church along Highway 1, March, 1968
in the middle, Ronnie Williams (Myrtle Beach, S.C.) is to the
right, and Willie Rivera (Patterson, N.J) is to the left. Willie
had a bullet graze his eyelid on May 9, 1968, (talk about lucky).
Crashed chopper picture courtesy of "Doc"
we were getting medivaced, the first time it was tried, we were
shot down from about 100' in the air. The helicopter flipped on
it's side, and I fell directly on top of Willie's leg. His leg
was broken, and he never had to go back to Vietnam. I'll never
forget the last time I saw him. The corpsmen in Danang put him
on a litter, and he had a cigarette hanging out of his mouth and
he was smiling like some guy going to Valhalla. He knew he was
through. He reminded me, not of Bogart in Casablanca, but like
William Bendix in "Guadalcanal Diary". He winked at
me and thanked me for it all. Willie, if you're out there, let
Ronnie Williams (right)
was wounded toward the end of May, 1968, in some other operation
they sent Mike on. (I was recuperating at Camp Kue Hospital in
Okinawa). Some gook threw a grenade at him. He got a collapsed
lung and was sent home. Ronnie, if you're out there, give me a
"Sage" an M-79 guy holding a "trophy"
gung ho Marine who loved getting into scrapes. Near Hai
Van Pass in Thua Thien Province on May 3, 1968 at an old French
railroad station at the Pass overlooking the South China Sea.
"Sage" was shot in the arm 6 days later, bullet hit
the bone and he was in a lot of pain.
ended up as Battalion Legal Clerk at Headquarters with 1/5 at
An Hoa (real lucky; I was on the chopper heading back to the bush
when they called out my name). Even though I was attached to 1/5
from Christmas till March, 'Medevac Mike' was my home outfit;
always has been and always will be. I was kind of the "Radar"
at An Hoa, as well as typing up KIA letters to be sent to their
Always making time for the kids
Jerry and Beth's son, Jon December
Jon in Kandahar December 2002
Jerry and Beth Lomax
3/5 Reunion 2002
Operation HOUSTON II
Doc Bowman Memorial
Sam Cole Memorial