149th Ordnance Company
In 1966, the 149th Ordnance Co left Ft Hood Texas and embarked on it's voyage to South Vietnam, leaving from Oakland CA. The 149th was a heavy maintenance company in that they supported a large amor division at Ft Hood. The unit arrived in Cam Rahn Bay where they stayed for approximatly six months. The company was split into two and half went north to Qui Nhon. The 149th Ord Co was at that time a part of the 169th Ordnance Battalion. (Maintenance & Supply) Other companies assigned to the 169th Ord would be reorganized and assigned to the 5th Maint Bn (DS) as a result of the Costar (Combat Support of the Army)reorganization. Costar reorganization occured around June/July 1966.The 169th Ord Bn then became the 5th Maintenance Bn. ...........Ed Carney, 149th Ord Co. Ed was with the 149th for approximatly two and a half years, the first one and a half years at Ft Hood
The following are exerpts from emails I have recieved from two early members of the 149th at which time it was an ordnance company (maintenance). the first is from Ric Sasse, an officer with the 149th, the second from David Raab another member of the 149th.
I was in the 149th Ord Co when I arrived in Cam Ranh Bay. The C.O. was a CPT Terrio. This was February 1966. I was the first replacement officer assigned to the company. The company had arrived together, by ship, from Ft Hood. We had a sister company, the 129 th Ordnance Company,(Later to be the 526 th CC&S) also from Ft Hood, and both companies were shipped from Cam Ranh Bay to Qui Nhon two weeks after I arrived in country.
This was when the Army was reorganizing under the COSTAR program Ordnance Companies became Maintenance Companies, Signal Companies converted to Light Maintenance Companies. The Battalion was the 169th Ordnance Battalion which was re-designated, 5th Maintenance Battalion.
Now is where it got muddied. Lineage and honors were passed down by the department of heraldry. The battalion S-3 was designing a unit crest which was dis-approved (his design was given to the 169 th Maint Bn [see how confusing it became]). The 5th Ordnance (not the maintenance battalion) was an ammunition battalion with an artillery shell in its crest. (the 5th also had an artillary shell in it's crest)
I was given to the battalion S-3 CPT Elliot to be his assistant S-3 and was given the task of laying the outer perimeter concertina wire for the Cha Rang site (it didn’t have a name back then). All the personnel from the 149 th rotated home in September and I think at this time the 149 th became the 618th and moved out to Cha Rang and I became the Adjutant. .......Ric Sasse
I arrived in RVN, 8/66. Assigned to 149 th Ord. Co, 5th Maint. BN. The unit had come from Fort Devens, thru Ft Hood. Landing in Cam Ran Bay, and then moving on to Qui Nhon. This is different from “Stanton’s Battle Orders”
In August I was assigned the project of moving the Company out to the new Cha Rang Maintenance Complex, on Route 9. At that time, my CO was Capt Roth (VMI), and 1 st Sgt, Petty. Around November, we were redesignated, 618th Hvy Equip Co., 86th Maint Bn. .......David Raab
The 149th Maint Co shows up later in 1968 in the Pleiku Area Sub Command attached to the 62nd Maint Bn along with the 552nd Maint Co.
Meritorious Unit Commendation for 169th Ordnance Battalion, forunner of the 5th Maintenance Bn. Listed in it are the 149th Ord Co, later to become the 618th HEM Co, the 129th Ord Co (Coll & Class) later to become 526th CC&S, the 56th Signal Co, later to be the 554 LEM Co, and the 618th Ord Co later to be Hq& Main Support Co
As of now, it's anybody's guess as to what became of the Pleiku 149th and it's personell. When Main Support and 552nd moved to Charang Valley, we moved into an empty company area and became the 149th Maint Co, we didn't just strengthen a 149th that already existed there.