Dedicated to the Men and Women of the Air Commando and Special Operations Units of the United States Air Force -- Past, Present and Future - "Any Time, Any Place"
and to the Special Operations Forces of the United States Army, Navy, and Marine Corps -
Quiet Professionals All
Welcome to Jim Henthorn's Vietnam Vet Page!

Last Revised: July 16, 2007 © Jim Henthorn

21st Helicopter Squadron

A Veteran of the Vietnam War, I served as a Weapons Mechanic and occasional door gunner with the 21st Helicopter Squadron located at Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai Air Force Base, Thailand from November, 1967 through May, 1969. Later renamed the 21st Special Operations Squadron, the 21st flew CH-3E "Jolly Green Giant" helicopters. I earned the Air Medal while participating in various operations and the Sikorsky "Winged S" while participating in a rescue with a Sikorsky helicopter.

One of our helicopters (CH-3E 67-14703) survived the War, later the Gulf War and now rests in honored glory at Robins AFB Air Museum. Click HERE to learn more and see a photo!!!

In Memory of My Fallen Comrades In Arms
Knife, Tail No. 66-13295
23 MAY 68 at XD812544, I Corps
Captain James P. McCollum, Aircraft Commander, 66E-12
Captain William H. Taylor, Pilot, 67E-03
SSgt. John L. Coon, Flight Engineer, 66E-05
Sgt. John E. Albanese, Flight Engineer, 66E-07
Sgt. Robert A. Fink, Crewchief and Gunner, 66E-09

Our First Combat Loss of the Vietnam War

And there were many more.

Click Here - In Memory of Our Special Operations Helicopter Crew Losses (Updated 04/30/2006)


This year (7/11/2000) I completed a project that assembled data about all USAF Helicopter Crewmember losses - not just Special Operations but also the ARRS ("That Others May Live"). That document is 21 pages long and is as complete as I can make it as of this time. It is in Adobe PDF format and will require that you have Adobe Acrobat Reader (a free program from Adobe) installed on your computer.

Click HERE to view the file. Last Update: 12/20/2007, now 32 pages.

Please e-mail me by clicking here if you have any additions or corrections to make to the file.

And now, as then, we sometimes lose one of our own....
Click Here to view "In Memoriam"

Death Notice: Sgt. Michael Conaway, 21st SOS Personal Equipment, 1967-68, passed away at his home in Kingman AZ after a two year fight with cancer. From his daughter, Sara, comes this message: His picture is on page 7 of the Dust Devils yearbook. He passed away on August 7 2005. Dad never talked much about what he did in the service, but I would like to know. I would like to hear any stories (good or bad) about him. My e-mail is Thank you very much. Sara

Ever hear of a "Wannabee"? Click HERE to see what I mean...

I'm a member of the

the Thailand-Laos-Cambodia Brotherhood

the Air Commando Association,
Heli-Vets - a Vietnam Vet Helicopter Crew Net,
the Vietnam Helicopter Crew Member Association
and the Vietnam Veterans of America.

My favorite hot links to other Vietnam War sites can be found here

I am actively involved in my own project - Map Scan. Phase I is now complete. I've scanned the 1:250,000 scale maps of the most significant portions of SouthEast Asia. A significant undertaking, the effort preserves the maps of locations as they were in 1966 when these maps were printed and used. Go down to the Scrapbooks and Maps Section below to investigate further...

Click on the Image for a high resolution image!
Jim was also involved in the restoration of a UH-1M, Tail No. 66-15238, with the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 451, Baltimore MD. Click HERE to see what we were able to accomplish in less than one years' time!

Scrap books and Maps!

ACTIVE! But Not complete. Definitely under construction!
The 21st Special Operations Squadron was stationed at Nakhon Phanom Royal Thai Air Force Base located in northeast Thailand and almost due west of the DMZ. "21st Special Operations Squadron" is a history, in words and photos, of our involvement in the Vietnam War.

Project MapScan

Project MapScan was an outgrowth of the fact that, flying out of Thailand, many of the places others mentioned in their stories were places that I did not know. Nor did I have any idea where they took place.

NEW - Phase I is complete! The maps cover the entire area of South East Asia including South Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and North Vietnam and eastern portions of Thailand.

Phase II involves identifying all the significant locations on these maps and providing a hot-link to the correct map for each location. Phase II is just getting underway now (15Dec2000) and will not be complete for some time yet.

Images are quite large and will take some time to download...

© Jim Henthorn, All Rights Reserved. Contact Jim for links and usage. To e-mail Jim, click here .

Click on the books below to go in-country and re-visit your old AO...

Maps of South East Asia - Primary Site (Jim Henthorn)

Alternate Map Site at The FAC's Map Case (George Lattin, Former O-1 FAC)

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