The Blue Annihilators

huey in the bush

Sgt. Gregory Lee Peffer (center on the ground) KIA January 22, 1971

The areo rifle platoon, the Blues, complements the aerial reconnaissance capabilities of the Pink team by providing ground reconnaissance. Transported by Huey slicks, the Blues can be quickly inserted to check the spottings of the aerial observer, assess the damage inflicted by Cobra or B-52 strikes and pursue enemy elements. Generally only a patrol-size element will be inserted initially, then the rest of the platoon.

We were in choppers almost every day looking for the enemy or going out after down birds (crashed choppers or airplanes). We were the ones first on the ground of a crash and responsible for putting the mostly burned bodies into body bags…


Filed under Vietnam War

28 responses to “The Blue Annihilators

  1. jesuspdlr

    My God!!
    Dangerous and terrible job for the ‘Blues’ platoon….
    A question, please. Were your Huey slicks, armed?


  2. usastruck

    Each Huey (slick) was typically armed with two M60 machine guns (one on each side of the bird). They were manned by the crew chief and door gunner…

  3. Howard "Ed" Usrey

    I was with the ARPs ’70-’71 and carried an M60. At the end of this month Feb 27,2011 I will meet with 5 of my Blackhorse Brothers in Florence, AZ for a reunion. Allendorf, McGinty, Moriarity, Mahn, and Schopp. When we get together and have a few drinks, then start talking about our time in-country, I am always amazed at what we did. I have tried to live my life to the fullest and enjoy every minute I can to honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice and will ever live young in our hearts. Allons!

  4. Dennis Kearns

    Thanks for your service I spent my time at lz buttons 69 & 70 was with the crash &rescue first cave 11th av

  5. Steven boyd

    Welcome home boys… 34, with 2 current combat tours. Just wanted all the Vietnam Veterans to know….this generation of warriors looks up to you, welcome home again.

    • usastruck

      Much appreciated Steven and thank you for your service…

    • Bruce Hinds

      Thanks for that Steven from an old Huey pilot. Just so you know, and I think I can speak for all from our era, we really admire the dedication your generation has shown, going back to battle time after time.

  6. Michael Bonswor

    I as well served with the ARPS 70-71 was an RTO

  7. Ken Tomlinson

    Stumbled on this site and was a Blue Dtroop1/1 in 71-72. After 42 years finally meeting up with my brother Blues and getting them into the VA system. So far 3 entered into VA healthcare which myself and my wife use and love. Another 3 are receiving 100% disability from VA and SSD.
    Friends, there is no way you could have been a Blue or Animal and not be totally screwed up.
    Welcome home brothers,
    Need advice or just someone who has been there please feel free to let me know

  8. My brother. SGT. John (Randy) Spear was with B Troop 1st/9th (blues) at Quin Loi from late Oct. 68 to April 23, 69 when he was KIA on a rescue mission of a downed OH-6A flown by Jim Dunn. For some reason, there was no report of the loss of a helicopter in the after action report. My brother was also WIA on Feb. 23 during an attack at Quin Loi. Randy also served from May 68 tell Oct. with company E 52ed Inf. (LRRP) at camp Evens .If there is any one out there that can shed some light on these events, I would like to hear from you. My email is

  9. Michael Jones

    I was a Scout Crew Chief/Observer flying in those OH-6A’s. I did not arrive in Quan Loi until Sept. 69. We had our final crash landing after being shot down March 18, 1970. The Blues rescued us. It is unbelievable what they did to save us all. If it weren’t for soldiers like your Brave Brother I would not be alive today. There are never enough words to use as a Thank You… It goes way beyond that.

  10. Roger Foster

    I was on a Blue Team in Deadly Delta 1st 7th air cav that helped to rescue a Loche Pink Team crew, this was in 71.

  11. Robert Florez

    looking for blue annihilators 1969 to 1970, this is Dutch, Sure would love to get in touch with you, anyone know Fingers?

  12. Mitchell Jones

    Did you know a David Jones?

  13. Tom Crowley

    How did one get into Blue platoon? Did you get recruited from a rifle company or volunteer? Was life very different for the enlisted due to the other platoons being mostly WO and RLO pilots? I guess I am just amazed/motivated to hear about when people volunteer for an even more dangerous job than infantry.

    • Michael Bonswor

      I volunteer I was Armor No One informed me my MOS would change, and yes life was better on base not so much on missions.

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