Phu Cat, Vietnam 1968, Dad’s Photos

A few years back, while taking a video production course, I had to do a simple photo montage. As I had done many, many montages, I thought it would be cool to take an extra step in the project, and scan my father’s (also Tony Romeo) old Vietnam photos. I scanned them, set them to music, and that was that. I didn’t give it a second thought.

Then several years later, YOUTUBE became all the rage. So, for Father’s Day this year, I dug out the video of my father’s tour of Phu Kat, Vietnam and uploaded it to the site. I sent it to him because baby-boomers really get a kick out of seeing themselves on the web. Especially if it’s a 40 year old video of them at 20!!! What happened since has been pretty remarkable.

It’s been viewed almost 4,000 times. And in those times I have heard from vets that served in Vietnam, a few that served on the base, a few that knew my dad in those days, and even a few that were IN MY PHOTO MONTAGE!!?? Is that a remarkable age that we live in? That I could take 40 year old photos on the internet, tag them under “Vietnam, Phu Cat, Tony Romeo, 1968” and within 9 months I had heard from three people that were pictured in the various photos of the base.

I have linked the youtube page to this blog, and vice versa. My goal from here is to re-edit the video, and place the names of as many of the vets as I can to help these guys exchange some emails and maybe some more photos past and present. When I turned a simple graphic art project into a Father’s day gift, I had no idea less then a year later that effort would reunite guys who served together years before. What a very cool way to give back to some vets and thank them for what they gave us. I also find it very interesting that perhaps the internet can be the place that these guys start to get some long overdue recognition… Below is the video…

To all you guys that have contacted me via YOUTUBE that appear in these photos, with your permission I’d like to add your names to the tags of this montage so that people that may be searching for you from those days may find the video as well. My goal is to redo the video this Father’s day. This time I’d like to add the names of the vets in the photos for the ones I can name based on the info I got and will get. I’d also like to offer high resolution copies of the images to any of the Phu Cat vets that would like them.

UPDATE: 2-2009.  BUFFALO SPRINGFIELD HAS TAKEN DOWN THIS VIDEO MONTAGE BECAUSE OF COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT OF THE SONG I USED. I was not making any money off it,  was only using it to salute the troops like my father and capture an era…  And SO BEGINs my LIFE LONG BOYCOTT of Buffalo Springfield…  I will use another song for the photo montage.

81 thoughts on “Phu Cat, Vietnam 1968, Dad’s Photos

  1. Hi all, I was a Special Purpose Vechile Mech, 37th Combat Supp Grp, worked on the refueling units from Nov 67 to Nov 68, always trying to find guys I was with at Phu Cat only found one, Roy Auther Olsen (Ollly). This is a cool thing you have done, memories come back instantly when you see these pictures, Thanks, Little Stevie

  2. It was a “cool thing” you guys did, steve. Thanks to guys like you and my Dad (Tony J. Romeo) for your service! If you have any pictures of those days and would like to share them that would be great.

    Tony M. Romeo

    1. I was at Phu Cat from mid 1968 for 13 months working 37th SPS, Cobra Flight. Tango 13 was my home. Worked with ground radar and the night ambush teams. Are there any reunions that you know of? Thanks. Dave Hanson

    2. Hello Tony, your Dads picture and name are very familiar, I was at Phu Cat (5/68 – 10/69) with the 421st MMS as a 461 BB stacker, did your dad work in the bomb dump? Great tribute to him…..all the best.

  3. I was in Phu Cat most of 1968. I left in Dec. and went to Germany.I was in C.E.S. and was an equipment operator. I was mostly on a front end loader building bunkers around the barracks but went off base alot to do earth work for the army. We built roads and repaired the runway after motar attacks.40 yrs. ago ,its hard to remember. When I ran a bulldozer I had my Texas flag flying behind my seat. Ive got tons of photos but they are all on slides except for a few. I’m not a geek so I don’t know how to put them on line to share with every one. Thanks for your service, sincerely, Earl Seago

    1. Earl, I was a construction equip. mechanic worked with Sgt. Rice, he rotated out and I took over the heavy equipment section, also Tec Sgt. Daff.
      April 1968 thru March 1969 our shop was at the fuel pumps & tire shop.

  4. Hi:
    I was on Phu Cat during tet and remember a Romaro coming on base still believe I have a picture of him with Foxworthy and Peake. Enjoyed the memories

  5. I was at Phu Cat from 12/13/67 – 12/13/68 in 37th CSG. Worked in Acctg & Finance – I remember a guy named Romeo….is this the guy i rememeber?

  6. I was at Phu Cat in the 37th SCG. Worked in Acctg & Finance from 12/13/67 thru 12/13/68 – I remember a guy named Romeo that also worked in Finance & am pretty sure it was your dad. Had lots of photos & 35mm slides but all was lost in Hurricane Katrina in Aug 05……Ask your dad if he remembers me.

  7. Hi Guys …
    I was there in ’67-’68 (extended tour) with the 903rd Aeromedical Evac Flight. We seemed to use PhuCat as our “rear” area, while deployed otherwise in support of the Marines up at DongHa (DMZ) and the Army 173rd ABN in DakTo. While passing back through PhuCat, I/we would help out the ROK troops stationed along a river on base. I recall the red dirt, having to help build our barracks, and the hanging water bags where we got drinks from. I still have my NCO Open Mess ID (card #37) and the Cow Palace Lounge ID from 1967. I would truly like to go back to these areas. I know it would help in the healing process, and allow me to move on at this juncture in my life. God bless all who served & sacrificed. God bless the troops from other nations who helped us. And I know that if permitted to “take care of business” as we should have, and as history has shown American’s always have in the past, we could have left the Campaign as Victors. (IMHO)

    1. Mick, The 903rd at Da Nang was my home from May 1968 to May 1969. I remember you all working the sites at Dong Ha, Quang Tri, and Hue Phu Bai, and hanging out with us at Da Nang.

  8. Was Bee Bee stacker in Phu Cat Bomb Dump Mar67- Mar68. Nice to see the ol’ place. Google Earth shows it fairly well now too. Looking for old collegues from 421 MMS. Thanks for doing this video..lots of us really appreciate it. Bryce Davis

    1. I was there from 5/68 thru 10/69 as a 461 BB stacker (421st MMS). I’d like to hear from any other bomb humpers, weapons guys or EOD troops. Tony Romeo looks very familiar and the name sounds familiar as well, did he work in the bomb dump?

  9. I was at Phu Cat the same time as your father with the 174th TFS. My friend George Olson appears in a couple of the photos and I would like to have copies of the photos. George passed away this month and Photos of him in 1968 would be well appreciated. If you can do that I would apprciate it.

    Bob Brower

  10. I was at Phu Cat from May 1968 thru Jan 1969, assigned to CES, Electric Shop, we kept the electric on! Hadqa great time and many good memories.

  11. I was at Phu Cat 66-68. 819th Red Horse. Super photo collection. We built what your dad lived in,ate at and delivered the water. Also went to Pleiku in Nov 68-Nov 69.

  12. My Father was at Phu Cat in during the TET offensive it is nice to see that all you guys are trying to get in touch. He has passed but I am very proud of him as I am of all of you. Thank you for serving our country. I am also a Desert storm Veteran, My son is a vetreran of both Iraq and afganistan, Both Marines.

  13. Great tribute to your father and an outstanding video. I served with the 37th Security Police Squadron at Phu Cat from April 68-69. Pictures bring back many memories, some pleasant and other NOT but we did what we had to do and for that I am proud to say I was a Vietnam Veteran and to all my South East Asia brothers WELCOME HOME!

  14. I served at Phu Cat from ’68-69 as part of Det 3, 15 APOSQ and AP augmentee. Great pics and do I remember those good times. We got attacked every Saturday and we on the look out of any civilians marking off steps near the flight line. During one attack I was writing a letter home and thought my guys were injured because of the rocket attack and I remember the no smoking sigh flapping in the wind because of the scrapnel. As NCO IC going going to the Red Horse compound to get great hamburgers. Great posting, keep up the good work.


  15. I was at phu cat all of 68. Was assigned to the age shop with the 37th fms. Remember a lot of great guys and still think of them. To all those who served there CHEERS|

  16. I was with the Red Horse 819th Aug. 67- Oct. 68. I served in the water purification plant. We were proud to serve and have wonderful memories. I did not know Tony, but your blog keeps all of the Viet Nam vets alive and well.

  17. My name is Thomas Kallay. I was in the 421st Munitions Maintenance Squadron at PhuCat, VietNam from February 1967 to August 1968. When I arrived at PhuCat, the munitions dump was not built yet. The runway was still under contruction. I worked with 6 or 7 guys in EOD which had a tent near where the bomb dump was being built. When we finally set up the two tents at the bomb dump entrance, it must have been around April or May of 1967, I planted two banana or palm trees in front of the tents. I first started work in a tent that recorded the bombs that would be loaded on the F-100 and F4C fighters. I did this for 6 or 7 months, then made a change to night shift and performing the loading of the flatbeds and loading of the bombs on the fighters. I was in Siagon on a 3 day R & R when the February TET offensive (February 1968) took place. I left PhuCat August 18th, 1968 and mustered out of the Air Force in Seattle, Washington. This website has bought back many memories for me. I still pray for the MIA’s left behind over 40 years ago.

    1. My God. I know you. I was there with you at the same time. I roomed with John Lufkin on the second floor when the new barracks were built.

      1. Talk about a small world and remembering those we knew when. I think you and I shared a few beers. I was in the 421st Mar 68 to Mar 69, might have been Bryce Davis’s replacement, timing would have been right. I roomed with Ray Fejedelem. We both worked Inspection.

    2. Hello Thomas, I arrived at Phu Cat in May 68 and worked in the bomb dump (461 w/ 421st MMS). We probably met but the name’s not familiar. Thanks for your service and God bless you sir.

  18. I was assigned to Phu Cat and was there off and on from 6/69 to 6/70 with the 903rd Aeromedical Evacuation Sq.. It was definitely one of the better spots to be in if you had to be in Vietnam. There was even a duck pond outside the front door of the 903rd’s hootch with a couple ducks that lived the good life there. Papasan took care of keeping the hootch clean and swept out, I think he spent a little too much time with his opium pipe though.

    If anyone has pics of the front of the old 903rd hootch area and duck pond, I’d love to get copies of them. A website that had them for years is now down, I should have made copies of them

    One nice memory of Phu Cat… it is where I watched our American astronauts make the very first moon landing on TV. I couldn’t believe I was able to watch that while in an air conditioned day room in Vietnam.

    1. Don’t know if you will see this or not but have photo of the old 903 medevac when we were at Qui Nhon in 67. Will be happy to send. Also knew Tsgt Sylvester McCullough of 903 who was kia after leaving khe sanh enroute to Da Nang or Dong Ha in Feb 68.

  19. I was in the 37CES Heavy Equipment section from 1967 to 1969. I operated a road grader mostly and also worked other equipmnent. I remember the name Seago from that section. I left in 1969 to Thailand. Anyone remember Tsgt Weaver who worked in the plans department or any one else from that time era?

  20. Was there in 68-69 as Security (Cobra Section Charlie 9 – Ambust)Thanks for sharing the photos. It brings back memories.

    1. hi tony…i went by the nick name dep…was also in cobra from 4/67 thru5/69..our camp was on the north end of the base…served many weeks on top of hill 151…it’s been so long i don’t remember many of the names of the people i served remember helping to make the cobra flag with a lot of our names on it…some names i remember were guy lanky-dennis brownell-hank suarez-macdonald-soper-swallow-martinez…wish i could remember more..anyway hope your doing well…take care..sgt. albert dipalma (boston mass)

  21. Was stationed at Phu Cat from May 67 thru May 68 with Steve McGonigal
    and Roy Olsen. Steve and I stay in touch weekly via e-mail. Haven’t located
    anyone else, but hoping. The years have flown, but it only seems like yesterday
    being at the “Cat”.

  22. I was stationed in Ohu Cat for a short while, Feb, 68-Jun 68. Assigned to the 37th Air Police Sq, I worked in the armory. Roger Pennell and I built the added storage shed in the back of the armory to house th Operation Safeside equipment. Thanks for the pictures, does bring back memories.

  23. Frank Kirbyson

    I was stationed at Phu Cat, with the 421 mms, from May of 69 to May of 70. Went to Danang to help EOD with the munitions storage facility mishap just outside Danang Air Base. Proud to have had the privilege to serve. Welcome home brothers and sisters and God Bless our fallen comrades..

    1. Frank, I was at Phu Cat at the same time and was sent to Danang for the clean- up at the same time, I was at the munitions dump for 5 months ant then was sent to Bien Hoa for a year with the 303 mms.

      1. Larry, I also left Phu Cat, where I was a 461 from 5/68 to 10/69, and went to Bien Hoa and the 303rd as 461, I was ranking guy (buck sgt.) of the group who left. Nice to hear from anyone in that group.

  24. Was at the Cat April 68 through April 69 in 37th T F W assigned to the aircraft refueling section also was part of the augmentee section of base security. Welcome home all who served, would like to hear frome any who served with me .

    1. Larry, can you please call me ? I am Charlie Taylor and a private investigator trying to find anyone that was an augmentee in Phu Cat around 1968. The Edson that was there is Joe Lambright and he worked in the Jet shop. My number is 520-245-2544. Thank you.

      1. Charlie, I was an augmentee at Phu Cat in 68 and have been trying to find someone who remembers the incident wherein the pilots went berzerk, got drunk, stole vehicles and weapons and began shooting up the base. They called out the augmentees to help and I never got an explanation as to why all this happened. All I know is that they were stood down for some reason and got mad about it. I was set as the guard to those under house arrest and had an insane encounter with a Major, Captain and 2nd Louie……almost Killed the Major! I’ll give you a call.

    2. Hey Larry, I was at Phu Cat (5/68 thru 10/69) in the 421st MMS and served as an augmentee as well. Nice to hear from you and know your OK and doing well, all the best.

  25. I was stationed at Phu Cat from 68 – 69 and was a special purpose vehicle repairman in the motorpool. Sorry I didn’t know your dad, but I did recognize several of the pictures. Sometimes it seems like an eternity ago, and other times like it was just last year.

  26. I was stationed at Phu Cat in 67-68 in the 421st MMS. Your dad’s name isn’t familiar but then again we all had nick names.

  27. Good to hear from others who were at the CAT handled a lot of munitions from the railhead to the dump. Was there with Fitz, SJ, and Dave Hastings(he was killed in the dump by a truck). Today is Vet’s day just want to say welcome home and it was great to serve with the Best.

    1. Hey Byron, I was a 461 at Phu Cat and remember the guy who was run over in the bomb dump but could never remember his name, thanks for posting that. I remember the NCOIC standing us up the morning after this happened and making subtle accusations that he might not have been an accident. As I recall, his remard was “We don’t know if he was run over or run down”. He became very unpopular after that and they shipped him out. I believ he was a Master Sgt. I don’t recall your name but then most of that is a blurr to me now……nice to hear from you though.

  28. I was at Phu Cat from 01/28/68 to 01/27/69. I worked in Accounting & Finance in the Pay & Collecting area for SMSGT Rollie Rittenhouse. I was later moved to the accounting area and worked for SMSGT Ronald K. Brown where I kept the books for the NCO Open Mess. The guy name Romeo may have been the supervisor in the civilian pay area.

    1. Mike, just ran across your comments. I had watched the Romeo montage a few years back after being told about it by Rob Nebgen, another finance guy. Tony was the cashier and I was the one in civilian pay. 12/1-67-12/3/68

  29. I was at Phu Cat from June 1969 to March 30, 1970. I was a #2 man on a Weapons Load Crew
    and was assigned to the 421 st MMS.We came in from Da Nang with the F4 Phantom squadrons. SMsgt Nicodem, Msgt White, Msgt Grey, Ssgt Baker, Sgt Macioce and Airmen Hill, Larsen, Ely, Bursey, Simpson and Brutto were some of the other Guys.

    I enjoyed the photo montage honoring your Dad.

  30. Anyone know what sort of drinking water was available at Phu CAt? My husband was stationed there from 1968-1969. He thought it was well water from a local well, but we were trying to verify this and what sort of wter treatment was available at that time? Just organisms and bacteria? I’d love a reply if at all possible! Thanks!

      1. First day in Phu Cat C123 was spraying agent orange down the creek and perimeter . Found that water well was on the side bank of the creek. Weeks later was able to talk to operator of water systems the well was cemented in and no openings to out side waters. During monsoon season the creek would run level with water . Looked at well at that time and it was above the level of the
        creek. My consern was the creek ran out
        to 141 st Army gun bat. Looked like a desert with dead trees all the way for 11 miles. The water at Phu Cat was “Chlorinated” !! Hope this is some help.
        By the way we had all 4 “ agent orange ,
        agent blue, agent white and agent purple!
        at Phu Cat.

    1. I am Rick Ingle and was at phu cat from July 68 to July 69 in the 819th Red Horse squadron separated from the main base. I ran the small water plant that supplied the Red Horse squadron with water. We drew water from the phu cat river and processed it with two erdalators and it was also chlorinated. The quality from our small plant that supplied the 819th was probably more potable and palatable than what you drink now.

  31. great site…Was a Phu Cat 37th Security Police. Only a short while..shipped out to DaNang. Knew a guy named James Tudy, from New York (

  32. I was there 1967-68 421st MMS blu 1b ,never forget tet, never worked so hard in my life, my hats off to all the guys who served in Vietnam and didn’t run to Canada. We won the war,our politicians and reporters lost it for us! God bless all of you!!!

  33. although I am a veteran, I was not in Vietnam. However, about 20 years ago my brother was on a business trip to Hanoi and purchased a Zippo from a street vendor. It has a map of Vietnam on one side and, the other size says “Vietnam Phu Cat 68-69” and “Nothing is dearer than life and nothing is more precious than to live it in freedom”. The side with the map of Vietnam also has an engraving of a pipe. When my brother gave it to me, it smelled distinctly of gasoline and the flint did not look store bought.

  34. I was at Phu Cat in the 421 MMS from April ‘68 to Nov ‘69. I worked mostly in the motor pool. The 421st had more vehicles than any other squadron at Phu Cat. I remember Sgt Ready, sgt “flash” Faulkner, sgt Groninger, a1c Furtzaig, sgt Jenkins, msgt Holt, Tsgt Ford, tsgt Kramer. After Phu Cat AB I went to Tainan AB in Taiwan. I got sick (multiple sclerosis) in April ‘70. I was medevaced to Clark AB in the Philippines and on to Travis where I was medically retired after 2 years 10 months and 29 day of service.

  35. I just watched Wphl show with your father talking about Harry Elis, I served in nam in 66/67 and played football with Harry at Camden Catholic. I would like to talked or email/ text your father.

  36. Hi Ray! Best way is probably Facebook. Me and my dad are both on there. Thanks for watching!

  37. Thank you for sharing your video. I was at Phu Cat from Feb through Jul 1968 with the 355th TFW from Myrtle Beach AFB.
    Excellent work.

  38. Donald Danielson: Enjoyed, brought back memories. I was with the 37th Security Police Intelligence Div from Aug 1967 until Aug 1968. I was also liaison between 37th SP and the Tiger ROK Div

  39. Donald Danielson: Enjoyed, brought back memories. I was with the 37th Security Police Intelligence Div from Aug 1967 until Aug 1968. I was also liaison between 37th SP and the Tiger ROK Div

  40. Joe Mackay (from NYC; stationed at Cross City AFS, FL; Phu Cat AB, RVN; Lowry AFB, Denver; & as a civilian living now in Seminole, FL). I was an Airman 1st Class Admin Spec., assigned to the 37th Tactical Fighter Wing Hqs. in their newly constructed building located close to the airstrip, back in June 1967. I served, under Major George Savage, who later was promoted to Lt. Colonel. I worked under SSgt. Mike P. (nice guy who didn’t know how to play poker very well!). I had just returned from a “Christmas 5 day R&R” in Bangkok, Thailand on Jan 1st, 1968, when the Tet Offensive broke out, and I got very familiar spending time in our bunkers, located next to our barracks, after many V.C. rockets hit our base. After 4 year in the A.F., I worked at Prudential Ins. in sales, both in Florida & Colorado for some 26 years! Happily retired from the insurance industry and enjoying my time with my spouse of 49 years (who I met in my hometown in NYC, just 2 months after my 4 year military service was completed.

  41. I served in the water purification plant at Phu Cat in the Red Horse unit from August 1967 to August 1968.
    Feel free to contact me @
    Richard Mazor

    1. John Howell on February 26 2021

      I was at Phu Cat fro. July 30 1967- July 30 1968 with 421st MMS mostly Inspections and also
      An AP augmentee.
      The names on the inspection team with me were White, Miller, Punzell and I think Brown.

      Does anyone remember the night that the munitions bunker outside of one barracks was hit? If so I would like the to know the date.
      Thanks John, and welcome home to all.

  42. I was at Phu Cat with the 1041st SPS (Test) from January 1967 until June 1967. We lived in our camp north of the base but got onto the main base from time to time. It was the highlite of my time in the AF. I’m only sorry that we weren’t still there during Tet of 1968.

  43. i was station at Phu Cat in 1967-68 Worked on the flight line in Bench Stock Supply.Have pictures of Bob Hope and Raquel Welch doing the Christmas holiday period Played basketball for the base team.

Comments are closed.