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-   -   Vietnamese Ranger Insignia,Headgear & Uniforms. (http://www.wehrmacht-awards.com/forums/showthread.php?t=385617)

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 04:59 PM

Vietnamese Ranger Insignia,Headgear & Uniforms.
 
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It has been a busy and exciting month for me first finding the TRIM patch, followed up by finding the enclosed Ranger (BDQ) items.

Because they are all Ranger related, I will list all of the ranger items on this one thread in three separate parts.

The first item is a ranger uniform. About a year ago I contact a former advisor whose name was provided to me by another veteran. I called and asked if he was interested in joining our association. I never heard back from him but 2 weeks ago I saw this individual at a plant sale wearing a ROTC T-shirt and gold CIB around his neck. Of course when I saw that I had to introduce myself for I knew he was a proud veteran, and we both discovered that we had talked over a year ago.

He was looking for plants for his new residence and I mentioned I was a collector of Vietnam militaria and had just picked up an unusual BDQ Badge. After shooting the bull for 15 minutes I asked him to check on the uniform he said he had, and that if he found it we could do a trade.

My landscape architectural services and any plants that he wanted….. for his uniform

I called him during the week and he called back saying that he had found the uniform and could meet with me at my nursery on Saturday. On Saturday there was great anticipation and when he arrived I was pleased to see the uniform. I immediately put it in my car and gave him a tour of the nursery. The first picture that you see is he and I holding the uniform amongst the endangered plants that I am trying to preserve. We walked the nursery and he tried to give me information on what he wanted by sketching it, but I knew that it would be best to go to his residence to view it first hand.

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 05:01 PM

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A less graying me, in '67 as the Sr. Advisor to the 34th Ranger Bn. Where am I?

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 05:04 PM

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Highlights

1970 camo rip stop.

Name, US Army, Infantry branch and captains rank all in camo

On right shoulder MR (Military Region) 4 / Vietnamese Ranger / CMD, large size, I do not recall seeing this scroll before. All scrolls that I saw and worn up to May ’68 were smaller in size and worn on the left shoulder. They were usually Bn. related

On left shoulder camo bevo BDQ SSI

On right pocket. a patch for the 44th Special Tactical Zone (bevo cammo)

Two top pockets of the uniform modified like Airborne style zippers that are completely hidden under the pocket side flap. Owen this shot is for you.

No CIB or ranger qualification badge. He has both but just did not have them on this uniform.

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 05:05 PM

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Ranger Scroll

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 05:07 PM

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Zipper Pockets.

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 05:11 PM

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Last Saturday, I visited with Don and his wife, and after checking everything out we sat down and talked story about his tour. He showed me 2 photo albums of which I selected some pictures to put with this grouping. I also got copies of his orders assigning him to the rangers
and a copy of his certificate.

Before I left he gave me a V.C. pennant shown for permanent safe keeping, something that I have never seen before. Looking at the item in my mind it had to be for a unit no smaller than a Company. Talking with Cmd. Sgt. Major Mike Martin who served 2 tours with the BDQ (author of books on the Vn. Airborne, Rangers and Marines) and PRU’s in IV Corps, he said that he had also seen captured pennant’s like the one I described and it may have been for a battalion or larger size unit due to the fringe along the edge. Any information on this would be appreciated.

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 05:12 PM

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This ends part one....more to follow

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 05:25 PM

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Another picture of the uniform.

kammo man 10-08-2009 05:41 PM

great story and items !!!
I cannot wait to see more sir
owen

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 05:50 PM

Thanks Owen, Part 1 was for you.

The other 2 parts are more insignia related, one with a story, the others just great finds not normally found.

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 06:59 PM

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PART 2


The second item I got was off of EBay, listed as a jeweler made BDQ badge for a $75.00 starting price. The price may have frightened off many but it just perked my curiosity and so I contacted the seller and was able to talk to him. After finding out that we both served with the Rangers he sent me orders, documents and photo’s which will all be included in the grouping. Needless to say I won the item and find that the enclosed letter of provenance is the most interesting part of this grouping.

kammo man 10-08-2009 07:00 PM

Those zippered pockets are great !!!
Keep up the good work .

owen

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 07:32 PM

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September 9, 2001


To: Capt. D.M. Kim

Sr. Advisor 34th Vietnamese Ranger Battalion, ‘66-‘67

Sr. Advisor to the Chief of Tactics, Duc My Ranger Training Center ’68-‘69


Chao Dai Uy Kim,

The BDQ (Ranger) Badge that you bought from me on September 7, 2009 on e-Bay is one of only ten distinct ARVN Ranger Badges reportedly ordered for and presented to what General Toan called, “My Top Ten Rangers.” It is my understanding that these badges were made and crafted in Saigon by a Chinese jeweler for General Toan. There is neither a jeweler’s mark nor any gold Kt. marking numbers. My guess is it is 10K; it has never tarnished and I've worn and held it for more than 35 years. The craftsmanship is excellent; with fine details. Most of these badges were stamped out of common metals and they lacked the fine detail of this badge.

I was presented this badge by an aide of General Nguyen Van Toan, the II Corps Commander in 1973. At the time I was assigned to MACV as the II Corps Ranger Command as the G-2/3 Advisor. I was informed that these distinctive badges were modeled on the original BDQ badge, and were intended to be a morale booster following the news that the Americans would be going home and leaving their Vietnamese comrades to stand alone. Shame on American politicians!

Like all young, confident Infantry Officers, I too believed I was the best there ever was. However, I don’t want to steal credit for unique skills and accomplishments that honestly belong to others. I must tell you that I don’t believe that General Toan selected me to receive this very special BDQ badge because of any heroism or proven Ranger skills on my part that placed me over other Rangers. Instead, I believe that he presented me with this badge due to my close association with General Michael D. “Iron Mike” Healy, the II Corps Sr. Advisor.

General Healy was chosen in Washington to replace the well known II Corps Senior Advisor, John Paul Vann immediately following Vann’s death. General Healy selected me to go back to Vietnam with him for various reasons; amongst them, he knew that most of the Montagnard Soldiers from my days as a battalion commander in the 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne) “Mike Force” were then serving as ARVN Rangers (BDQ). He knew that they held me in high regard, and he wanted a quick and trusted assessment of the situation in II Corps. He knew I could get that for him from the Montagnard tribesmen. To carry out this tasking, he had me assigned to the II Corps Ranger Command. All my tours in Vietnam were spent in the company of the renowned Montagnard tribal warriors both with Special Forces and Vietnamese Rangers.

I, C. M.R attest that the information provided above is true and accurate.


Signed cmr

When complete this grouping will consist of the badge, pictures of Cpt. Randall both as a Ranger and Special Forces officer, orders and documents relating to this badge, and other information provided.

One interesting fact about General Toan was that the Ranger's did not like him at all. In the heat of battle as a young armor officer he ran over and killed many Rangers in his hasty retreat.

Part Three will be forthcoming once it is formated.

D. Michael Kim 10-08-2009 08:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kammo man (Post 3538948)
Those zippered pockets are great !!!
Keep up the good work .

owen

Owen,

Because the pockets have a bellows to them so they can expand, you hardly have a hint that their are zippers. If Don did not tell me about them I would probably have missed seeing them.

There are also a couple of things that are of interest.

The patch is not listed by C. Smyth, was worn on the right shoulder ,and is about a half size larger in width.

When I left country in May of '68 after two tours, I never saw the scrolls worn on the right shoulder.

Part 2 is complete.

hochiminhtrail 10-09-2009 02:11 AM

standing in the second row with the captain bars on the boonie hat.

Alex


Quote:

Originally Posted by D. Michael Kim (Post 3538685)
A less graying me, in '67 as the Sr. Advisor to the 34th Ranger Bn. Where am I?



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