My name is Nuoi “Henry” Hoang. I was born in Saigon, Vietnam in 1935. I graduated from high school in 1950 and from the College Technique (Saigon) in 1955. I was trained in AC-119 gunship tactics by Maj Albert Krueger and his 18th Special Operations Squadron crew in late 1972.
I joined the Vietnamese Air Force to defend South Vietnam against the aggression from the North Vietnamese Communists who were being backed up by the Chinese and the Soviet Union communists. As a member of the 821st Squadron (call sign – Tinh Long) in the Vietnam Air Force, I transitioned from a cargo pilot to an AC-119K Gunship pilot.
My most memorable event occurred one day before the government of the Republic of South Vietnam surrendered to the North Vietnamese communist People’s Army. Then the capital (Saigon) was surrounded by many enemy divisions. We fought with them until we ran out of ammunition and had to land at U-Tapao Thailand.
I will always remember the transition flights from being a cargo pilot to being a gunship pilot. I shall never forget Major Albert (Bob) Krueger, MSgt. Lee Kyser (flight engineer) and their teammates as they trained us at Da Nang from December 1972 through February 1973.
I separated from the AC-119K gunship on a sorrowful afternoon on April 29, 1975 at U-Tapao Air Base in Thailand.