Even during the time the French were in Vietnam
there was an area in the Mekong Delta, thick with
pineapple groves, that had been a Viet Cong holdout.
This area had never been successfully penetrated.
Last March theManchus ( 4th Battalion, 9thInfantry,
25th Infantry Division — the unit adopted by the
citizens of Farmingdale) were sent in to clear the
area of Viet Cong. The Manchu's named this assignment,
" Operation Farmingdale" and were successful
in routing the enemy. During this operation,
a Viet Cong rifle and flag were captured. The men
of Farmingdale* s adopted unit cleaned, polished and
mounted the rifle and sent it, along with Capt.
Nicholas Turchiano to the Vietnam Assistance Committee's
" Helping Hand Dance" April 1. Under the
rifle, the Manchus had inscribed, " To the citizens
of Farmingdale, In Appreciation, from the 4th
Battalion, 9th Infantry Manchu, 25th Infantry Division,
Binh Chang, Vietnam, March, 1967. The rifle
and flag will be on display in the near future in the
Farmingdale Public Library.
The most remarkable thing about the Manchus is
not their military valor, but their dedication to
pacification through their program of " Operation
Helping Hand" on- an official as well as volunteer
basis. These 680 men who call themselves Manchus
devote much of their time to helping the people of
South Viet Nam— their, problem of lack of medical
supplies, fatherless children who have little to wear,
of displaced families who need vitamins, soap and
even toothbrushes and toothpaste. This people-to-
people type of giving is helping to win the war
and establishing the peace even more than bullets.
As one dear little Vitenamese captain told a
member of VAC in answer to the question " What
do the Vietnamese children really need? "" Sun.
They need sun hats. Rainy season. They need
raincoats. To learn. They need paper, pencils. The
Vietnamese children need food in their stomachs.
Send rice, sugar, salt."
In answer to the question " Would the Vietnamese
children like bubble pipes ?"( VAC had acquired
200 bubble pipes from a generous local bank)
" Ah, Vietnamese children like fun. Like bubble
pipes — send!"
If you want to help the program of winning the
peace through the servicemen whom Farmingdale
has adopted, send contributions of needed commodities
and/ or movies to Vietnam Assistance Committee
Inc. to 88 West Oak Street. Donations are
tax deductible. Further information may be obtained
by calling CH9- 6181.
K of C and Masons Slate Blood Drive
The semi- annual blood drive,
jointly sponsored by the Farmingdale
Council Knights of Columbus
and the Bethpage Lodge
of the Masons, will take place at
the Masonic Temple, 125 Main
St., Farmingdale, on Tuesday,
April 18 between the hours of
5 p. m. and 8 p. m.
William Patak, K of C Fraternal
Activities chairman and
Joseph Tate of the Masons'
* nw? » n*
Published every Thursday by
THE OBSERVER, INC.
MYrtle 4- 6367
Frank J. Klesh - Caroline B. Klesh,
Editor and Publisher
Vol. 4 - No. 33
The Eamiingdule Observer is entered as second class matter ai the
Earmingdale Post Office, Farmingdale, New York, with publishers
office at 33 Merritt Road.
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M a i l i n g Address: Box 492, Farmingdale, N. Y. 11735
This publication will not be responsible for errors in advertising
beyond the cost of the space occupied by the error. By- lined articles
are the sole opinions of tie writers und dc not necessarily represent
the view of The Observer.
* * * * * *
Letters From Vietnam
HEADQUARTERS 4th BATTALION 9th INFANTRY ( MANCHU)
APO San Francisco 96225
VAC i* Vietnam Assistance Committee
of Farmingdale, Inc.
Dear VAC, 29 November 1966
Your thoughtful letter, requesting
information on a unit
which would like to be adopted
was received yesterday. I am
happy to say that we, the 4th
Battalion, 9th Infantry ( MANCHU)
would be honored to be adopted
by the Citi/ ens of Farmingdale.
Civic action programs are conducted
in conjunction with our
combat operations and include
projects which are helpful to
the local population. They include
help in education, health
and sanitation, the building of
dispensaries, schools and playgrounds
and in a myriad of other
fields which are pursued to win
back the population by improving
their numerous misfortunes. We
are always in need of commodities
to support this program.
There is so much which can be
done to help. May I suggest that
VAC send us toys, school supplies,
soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste
and childrens' summer
clothing. I assure you that the
commodities you send will be
put to good use and you can be
sure in knowing that you will
be assisting the 4th Battalion,
9th Infantry ( MANCHU) in accomplishing
our mission. The
winning over of these people is
so critical to the winning of
Please address any packages
to the Commanding Officer, 4th
Battalion, 9th Infantry ( MANCHU)
25th Infantry Division, APO San
Francisco 96225. *
Enclosed is a copy of the
history of the 9th United States
Infantry ( MANCHU). The 4th
Battalion is writing another chapter
in the history of the 9th
Infantry Regiment here in Viet
Incident ly this battalion deployed
to Viet Nam from Scho-f
ield Barracks, Hawaii on 16 April
1966 and we are presently based
at Cu Chi, which is approximately
35 kilometers northwest of
Saigon. The enclosed map will
help to locate us. The pictures
are for your use, also, and we
will send more as time goes
by. Since its arrival in Viet
Nam, the battalion has participated
in numerous combat operations.
We will be pleased if
you are proud of us as we are
proud to serve.
For all of the officers and men
of the battalion.
ROBERT A. HYATT
Dear VAC 8 December
The Manchus are presently
operating in Binu Chank District
of Gia Dink Province - SW of
Saigon. You would be proud of
the soldiers as they are doing a
magnificent job in going out
night after night to ambush and
do battle against the Viet Cong.
We are working very closely
with para military forces of the
district — the Popular Force
( PF) and Regional Force ( RF)
troops. Additionally, we are
conducting coordinated o p e r a tions
with a Vietnamese Airborne
Battalion — of the regular army.
The RF and PF of whom you
have read in the news, I feel
sure, are comparable to our
Minutemen of 1775. Tragedy
struck this little base, where
I have my headquarters, last
night ( 7 Dec!) when the VC exploded
a claymore mine against
a night patrol of PF. All 13 men
on the patrol were casualties.
Those who were killed in action
left 16 children. The widows r e ceive
only a pittance from the
government. How nice it would,
be — and how appreciated if you
all would send, to me for them,
clothing. As 1 have five children
1 realize how valuable old cotton
and light wool baby blankets are.
Clothing should be of summer
variety — although nights are
sometimes c h i l l y . N e i t h er
clothes nor other items need
Every night here is like the
4th of July — tonight is no
Most sincerely yours,
ROBERT A. HYATT
I will send this note back to
the division base at Cu Chi for
envelope addressing and posting
by the battalion adjutant.
Dear VAC 17 January 1967
Presentation of the clothing
and other items, to the dependants
of the unfortunate Vietnamese
unit, was made today. We*
will send pictures as soon as
we can. The recipients were
delighted with the gifts. I only
wish that you and die other donors
could have been mere. They
expressed profuse thanks for the
Please convey my personal
thanks and those of all the
MANCHUS for the thought and
effort which we know you all
put in to this project. The
selection was perfect. Incidentally,
you sent more than
enough so we have kept a few
things to further spread your
The battalion remains incessantly
busy witii never a dull
moment and seldom a free one.
Most sincerely yours,
Robert A. Hyatt
26 January 1967
Our letters crossed somewhere
over the Pacific, I suppose.
Sorry for the long silence.
As I wrote, I velieve, we have
just been at the grindstone for a
steady 2 1/ 2 weeks. We have
a break tomorrow — only a few
small operations. But tonight
the VC are restless — much
firing is going on. Just hope
it keeps its distance I
We are due to return to our
base at Cu Chi in four days.
. There, where we will live a
more reasonable life for a couple
of weeks anyway, we will come
up with items which the soldiers
would appreciate. A new club
is being built for them, the mess
halls are sort of barren and their
billets could use a " homey
touch." Granted, we don't have
a great deal of time spent in
Cu Chi but when we are there
it is nice to make everything
as comfortable and nice as we
can make it. I believe though,
that the majority of our requests
will be to help us help the Vietnamese.
The supplies which the
doctor has can be sent anytime.
Such things are always welcome -
I feel certain that die majority
of die items would be given to
die needy Vietnamese who come
to our MEDCAPS. This is a
sick call sort of thing where
the battalion doctor " sets up
shop" for 6 hours or so in villages
all over the area — of
course most hamlets and villages
have no doctor let alone
proper medical supplies and facilities.
During the 8 week period
our MEDCAPS have seen
and treated approximately 3800
people! In addition to helping
die sick, diese MEDCAPS help
to win back die people — also,
we are able to make psychologically
oriented handouts ( newspapers,
books, etc.) — and often
we receive valuable intelligence
information which is offered.
Our chaplains and surgeon have
expressed a desire to correspond
with dieir counterparts in
Farmingdale. A couple of the officers,
who will be rotating soon,
live close to Farmingdale— perhaps
you would like to invite diem
to your April 1 Dance.
In a few days we will have
more time to think and come up
with some ideas.
Robert A. Hyatt
Dear VAC, 30 March 67
The silence from this eM, as
I am certain you realize, is due
to the fact that we are knee
deep in rice and VC!
The very nearly 100% turnover
of officers and men has required
long hours and patience in
getting these new Manchu members
trained and coordinated.
Yesterday, Air Force jets supporting
our operations d r o p p ed
750 bombs and napalm, on r e quest,
just 150 meters in front
of advancing Manchumen.
The medical supplies you all
sent have gone to serve die
needy. Our MEDCAPS continue
to see about 250- 300 people each
day diey go out. It is very nearly
a bottomless pit.
We hope that die dance will
herald in some spring weadier.
Robert A, Hyatt
To The Editor
It was gratifying indeed to see
so many of our neighbors present
on April 5th at the public hearing
held by the Zoning Appeals Board
on the application of Morris Karp
and Sons, Inc.
The drama enacted at the public
hearing revealed what our officials
can do when dedicated to
the task of carrying out their
duties in accordance with dieir
sworn responsibilities. This is
all die people expect of diem, and
their presence alone was sufficient
to give them die moral sup-pot
tiiey needed to put die law of
die people before personal loyalties.
Until the Courts actually do
grant our officials police powers
to enforce die ordinances, we
must continue to keep these i s sues
before die public. As in die
past, we can depend on The Farmingdale
Observer to uphold die
principles and ideals for which
we are striving, but we still need
the help and support of die people
of the community.
Let's make " Pride in Farmingdale"
a reality for all die
John C. Raffaele
* i « i * * i i * * * * *
& P olitics
We hear that Farmingdale Democrat Zone Leader Vincent Gack-enheimer
has resigned. An announcement of his successor is ex » -
pected within several weeks.
* * *
Gregory W. Carman, a partner in the law firm of Carman, Callahan
and Carman, was recently elected to the office of Secretary
of New York Chapter of the Savings and Loan Law Committee of
American Bar Association.
* * *
Housing for senior citi/ ens at Mitchel Field took a big step
forward at a meeting between County officials and representatives
of die American Association of Retired Persons, according to
County Executive Eugene H. Nickerson.
Plans were moving ahead to build 500 units in the southeast
corner of the Mitchel Field Project. The project will be for moderate
and low- income elderly persons and will be built by a nonprofit
sponsoring organization. The new federal rent supplement
law should make low- income elderly citi/ ens eligible even if die
units are above dieir means.
Farmingdale OBSERVER Thursday, April 13, 1967
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