Tom Butt
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  Veterans Day November 11 - Happy Veterans Day to the Men of HHC 159th Engineer Group, Wherever You Are
November 8, 2019

Figure 1 - Hung this up 50 years ago

In March of 1970, when I left Vietnam, the 159th Engineer Group consisted of four battalions, the 34th, 46th, 92nd and 169th plus twelve companies and detachments, consisting of 3,957 Engineer soldiers, commanded by Col. Joseph K. Bratton

I was the assistant operations officer and liaison officer in the Headquarters of the 159th Engineer Group, meaning that among other things, I had to track progress on hundreds of missions and brief the commanding officer of the 20th Engineer Brigade, Col. Edwin O’Donnell, every Thursday on all the activities of the 159th Engineer Group for the previous week.

These 3,957 Engineer soldiers were mostly 18-24 year-olds, working 6 ½ days a week, building highways and bridges, operating heavy equipment, driving trucks, operating quarries and asphalt plants, flying helicopters, constructing every type of building, building fire support bases, sweeping mines, clearing land, and training ARVN (Army of the Republic of Vietnam) all while occasionally getting shot at and routinely rocketed and mortared.

 Happy Veterans Day to the Men of HHC 159th Engineer Group, Wherever You Are
Figure 2 - Headquarters and Headquarters Company (HHC) 159th Engineer Group, Long Binh, Vietnam, 1969. I am third from the left, top row, and John Clinton, my co-founding partner at Interactive Resources, is fourth from the left, second row.

For more, see:

Other Veterans Day E-FORUM posts:

For films of Vietnam 1969-70 by Tom Butt, see:

For films of the long trip home, 1970, see:

For my personal story of military service, see “Before and After Vietnam, Military Experiences of Thomas K. (Tom) Butt.”

Here are the details for some of the Veterans Day events planned in West County:

Saturday, November 9

What: City of San Pablo Veterans Day
When: 10 am to noon
Where: San Pablo City Hall, 13831 San Pablo Avenue 
More info: Click here 

Monday, November 11 

What: Pinole Historical Society/City of Pinole Veterans Day Memorial;
traditional flag retirement ceremony, singing, school groups.
When: 11 am to noon. (Noon luncheon for veterans at the Pinole Senior Center, for details call 510-784-9802.)
Where: Fernandez Park, Pinole
More info: Click here

What: El Cerrito Veterans Day Flag Placing (on veterans' graves), with youth groups. Refreshments. Flags supplied. Sponsored by the El Cerrito Lions Club
When: 8 am
Where: Sunset View Cemetery, 101 Colusa Avenue, El Cerrito.
For more: 510.237-0374