Stetson Cavalry Hat

Photo courtesy of retired Air Cav pilot Dan Carbone, who
served in Korea, Germany, Bosnia, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

The tradition of the Cav Hat began in the early days before the Vietnam War. The 11th Air Assault Division cavalry scout pilots were looking to distinguish themselves from other troops when they adopted the Model 1876 campaign hat for wear. They felt a need to return to the traditions of the Cavalry so long forgotten. LTC John B. Stockton, commander of the 3rd Battalion, 17th Cavalry Regiment, is given credit for establishing the tradition of wearing the Cavalry Stetson, much to the chagrin of the Division command group. By the time the 11th Air Assault Division was redesignated the 1st Cavalry Division (Air Mobile) the members of his unit, the 1st Squadron, 9th Cavalry Regiment, were wearing the hat.

1/9th Commanding Officers, 1970
Major Galen Rosher (Charlie Troop CO) front row far right

Nate Shafer, Scouts door gunner 1970 Pete Guthrie, Blues Plt Ldr 1968-69 & Pat Bieneman, Blue India, 1968-69
These men served in Vietnam with Charlie Troop 1/9th, 1st Air Cavalry Division .

The Cav Stetsons came out in full force for the Zit 990 Dedication Ceremony that was held on May 19, 2012 at the Mott’s Military Museum in Groveport, Ohio.

Blues Mini Reunion (September 2011) hosted by Pat Bieneman and his wife Carol (front row holding saber)


Charlie Troop Blues Reunion (October 2013) St George Island, Florida


Robert Duvall from “Apocalypse Now” (1979)


Filed under Vietnam War

6 responses to “Stetson Cavalry Hat

  1. Where can I get a cavalry hat and how much are they? I was in the 545th military police co., phuoc vinh (camp gorvad), october 1970-march 1971.

  2. God bless you guys: as a Pathfinder, you got me down safely even under fire, and more importantly, extracted my butt just as efficiently! Forever thankful for an Air Medal only – no Purple Hearts!

  3. Alan j Miller

    I’m searching for a cav hat for a friend he did two tour’s In nam 1st cav I’m a lot younger so I wasn’t sure what to get him I have a vage childhood memory of him wearing one I’m sure if you all like it then he will too most importantly I want to thank you for your service.
    Jim Miller

  4. Tom Hall

    My name is Tom Hall and I was with D Troop, 1st of the 9th at Phouc Vinh from March 1970 – March ’71. MOS was 11H/11B. Some in my unit that I remember..Max Winegar, Robert Vranish, Sionetti, Rich Fournier. We set up night ambush sites the first few months then began daily flights as a White team being set down who knows where while Blue and Red teams would try to attract fire. Also secured several convoys to Song Bay (sp?).

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s