Đà Nẵng Air Base
Happy Gulumpkies Birthday to Me

Jarhead Phantom Squadron (VMGA-323 Rattlers)
July 15, 1965

by David Curtis
Copyright (2003)


Happy Gulumpkies Birthday to Me:

I was at Đà Nẵng Air Base in July 1965. I was with the Jarhead Phantom Squadron [VMFA-323 Rattlers] over by Dog Patch.

The VC had come in behind us, cutting a rubber hose leading from one of the fuel cells north of Dog Patch and firing a tracer in the fuel to set the fuel off.

Let me start with my story, I was raised in Bloomfield, NJ. A polish neighborhood. I love Gulumpkies [ hope it is spelled correctly]. Well I don't know where my mother found them, but she sent me a couple of cans of pig-in-the-blankets in a care package all the way to Đà Nẵng. Yes Marines have mothers also ... I saved those cans for three months for my 20th birthday meal, which was on July 15th ,1965. Started cooking them late afternoon.

Then the VC hit ussouth of the field, down by "Charley Med". We hit our bunkers and waited ... little action ... Not much ... most down on the south end. When night fell, out came Puff and he dropped flares and Đà Nẵng is like daytime! Well finally the alert is over, I got back to my tent and DAMM ... Gulumpkies all burnt up! Such was my 20th birthday.

.I made up for it -- have had a few since then. Haha

You guys didn't live so bad at Đà Nẵng. My squadron was sent to Taipei, Formosa. They had a problem there with the mainland Chinese disrupting elections on the island. The airfare General at the base wanted to put us in tents around the base, then in Quonset huts. The Chinese General said no way. We got your barracks. Oh ... single-man rooms for the enlisted. Your enlisted lived better thab our Officers.

Dave Curtis


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