New Cooks’ OP

OP View
The View From Cooks’ OP

Tuesday, October 29, 1968

Sumo and I were in the middle of preparing lunch when a tractor showed up on the road below the mess hall.  Gunny Pavelcek was directing the operator to cut an 8-foot wide slot into the slope below our shower.  The cut-out section was going to be a new outpost with a 50 cal. machine gun emplacement.

After lunch a work party started building it with sandbags and large timbers.  A solid roof covered the OP, and the gun was secured into position.  The task was finished before dinner.

Pavelcek walked Sumo, Reb, Fernando and me through the new outpost.  Three interior walls were solid earth (part of the hill).  The roof was made of heavy timbers, topped with a layer of sandbags and the open end faced the rice fields below.  This OP filled the gap between the perimeter gate and the OP next to the horseshoe pit.  The Gunny gave explicit instructions, “If (when) the air horn sounds incoming, this will be your post.”

From our point of view this was a much better situation than the top of the Exec Pit.  We wouldn’t have to run up the hill and climb the ladder during a mortar attack.  We accepted this new OP with enthusiasm and started planning improvements to the sparse furnishings.

Reb suggested we build four seats which would double as storage for gear and ammo.  Fernando wanted to install a blast wall, and Sumo thought the OP should have better camouflage.  My thoughts concerned communication because we would be isolated . . . all the other OP’s had wired phones to the CP.

Next Edition:  Our First Guest

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