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Operations into the A Shau Valley, 1968-69

Author’s Note When Sp4 David Flinn arrived at his assigned unit in Vietnam in 1968, his first thought was, “There is nothing ‘Light’ about this Company.”

I have Dave considered my brother for 65 years. He and I talked about doing this write-up during a hunting trip in October 2018. He wanted to give a bit of history to his sons and grandchildren.

The photos were all taken by Sp4 David L. Flinn in 1968 and 1969. They are certainly not of professional quality, but do tell the story from the point of view of a self-described “equipment operator.” One of Dave’s regrets was that most of the photos he took were lost a few days before his DEROS (Date Expected to Return from Over Seas) as a result of a rocket destroying his bunker (he was on the perimeter berm), so the photo story is somewhat incomplete.

Intro to the 591st Engineer Company (Light Equipment):

Dave’s unit, the 591st Engineer Company (Light Equipment) was part of the 27th Engineer Battalion (Combat), 45th Engineer Group (Construction), 18th Engineer Brigade (the parent unit for all Army engineers in Vietnam). Dave was a certified welder before induction into the Army. After he completed basic training at Fort Knox and was granted the welder MOS with no further training.

Upon arrival in-country, the Company CO (commanding

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