119th Transportation Company
The 119th Transportation Company was the first US Army unit to arrive in Vung Ro Bay, first setting foot on the beach in September 1966. Soldiers set up camp on the southernmost beach area and slept in tents until barracks construction was begun in May or June of 1967. There was no road connecting with the rest of Vung Ro Bay and water craft were used for transport between beaches.
Photos by Al Cianelli
Units from the 577th Engineer Battalion began building a prefabricated Delong Pier and causeway, completing the project in January 1967. Typhoon Freida struck the bay on November 10, 1967 and washed away 30 feet of the causeway.
Click on photo to enlarge
Al Cianelli Album
"I was a Lt. with the 119th Transportation Co. We moved up to Vung Ro from Cam Rahn Bay in Sept. of 1966. Things were fairly primitive when we first arrived and we all lived in hootches set atop the sandy beach. During the year there, however, dunnage from the ships coming in to offload was used to put in wooden flooring for the troops in the hootches and a mess hall was also constructed.
On one occasion, our captain was visited by a bird colonel who stood atop one of the hills surrounding the camp, disapproving all the construction and work that had been done. The reason? He did not like the way the tents were set up; they were not at the proper angles to the mess hall or to some distant point. Everything was torn down and all was rebuilt, this time at the "proper" angles. This building took place during the rainy season so you worked the 12 hour shift on the ships or at the dock and, when that was done, worked on the hootches and mess hall.... and then tore it all down at the colonel's direction."
Lt. Bill King (119th Trans. Co)