As told by Emmett L. Carson, Jr.
While we were standing by in the aircraft for an imminent 12 helicopter troop insertion, a fellow pilot, Joe Duckett, succumbed to the demands of a mild intestinal virus and had hastily occupied a convenient "three holer" outhouse along the side of the runway at Phu Bai. As luck would have it, the call to "Launch all aircraft", came with Joe's flight suit still at half mast. While rushing to suit up, Joe watched in horror as his web belt and pistol, which had been removed to unzip the flight suit and placed next to him on the seat, quickly disappeared into the adjacent black hole. All that we saw from our bird was the door to the outhouse burst open and a figure holding a brown snaky-lookig object, at arms length, cover the distance to the helicopter at an ungainly gait and disappear into the cockpit.
During the debriefing after the mission, Joe said that he momentarily contemplated facing a court-martial for abandoning his weapon instead of actually having to reach in and retrieve it. As legends go, Joe's nickname stuck . . . "Honeybucket Duckett."
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