Please post only those topics relating to Prime Beef in this forum.


Postby Wayland Davis on Sun May 08, 2011 5:00 pm

History of Prime BEEF #10, two teams with the same unit designations but both them went to Vietnam had served on the same dates: 22 February to 19 June 1966.

Recently informed that there really was two parts to Prime BEEF Team #10 sent to Vietnam in 1966. This team was once a total of nearly sixty personnel--- one each assigned from the Air Training Command (ATC) and the second one from the Systems Command (AFSC). Both were split into separate teams that were reassigned to different locations but retaining the same designation identified as being Prime BEEF Team #10. The Air Training Command team was mission sent first to Da Nang, AB and then on to Nha Trang, AB but both had arrived in-country on 22 February 1966, and the Systems Command “Prime BEEF #10 troops were reassigned to bases Bihn Thuy, AB and Tan Son Nhut, AB, South Vietnam to work on priority projects at those locations. The history for the Air Training Command has been well detailed in “” but with this new completed history now made available from a member who served in Systems Command our second half also deserves the same historical documentation as is the Air Training Command achievements on this website. Thanks to Dwayne Farabee for his bringing this overlooked historical fact to our attention.

Report of AFSC *Prime BEEF Team #10 at Bihn Thu, Air Base and Tan Son Nhut, Air Base, Republic of Vietnam. Date: 22 February 1966 thru 19 June 1966.

The Air Force Systems Command “Prime BEEF Team #10 arrived at Tan Son Nhut Air Base, Republic of Vietnam on 22 February 1966 and departed on 19 June 1966. During this period of time the team was located at Binh Thuy Air Base from 26th February 1966 to 28th April 1966 and at Tan Son Nhut from 28th April 1966 to 19th June 1966.
The 30 member team consisted of personnel from various Air Force Systems Command bases and was deployed as a general construction team effort for the construction of dormitories, maintenance shops and administrative and training facilities. The trades represented on the team were carpenters, plumbers, electricians, masons, pavement maintenance specialist, equipment operators and a surveyor. During the deployment period the team constructed 19 wood framed buildings at Binh Thuy Air Base and 10 at Tan Son Nhut Air Base. The 9 buildings constructed at Binh Thuy consisted of 4 two-story units, 24 ft. X 60 ft. , 1 two-story 20’ x 60’; 2 single-floor open front maintenance type units; 1 each 20’ x 70’, the other 24’ x 60’ and 2 single-floor enclosed units; 1 each 20’ x 40’, the other 24’ x 80’. The ten buildings constructed at Tan Son Nhut Air Base were 5 two-story Airman dormitories 20’ x 80’ and 5 two-story Airman dormitories 20’ x 100’. These strong efforts took place during the urgent need for added facilities during a period of a buildup of forces to increase the Air War Mission and bed down of the personnel in increasing numbers and support aircraft. The Systems Command Prime BEEF #10 team of construction engineers played a major role in advancing the capabilities needed and necessary to prosecute the war efforts done with both individual and teamwork for achieving a better working environment and living conditions for all of the war fighters.

It was a random selection process by command to assign engineering troops by their assigned career fields and rank having the expertise to work independently and with minimal supervision while under stress and the hardships of war during their in-country TDY assignment. There were necessary innovations at times used to get the jobs done but the team was capable of making do when necessary, and when the available equipment was not there to support them in a task often by using just available manpower to supplement the continuation of the mission completion. There were the times of backbreaking efforts to advance the construction progress with longer hours applied to the tasking and the use of augmented labor given from all of the team members to achieve and maintain the work schedules in spite of a lack of availability of neither transportation nor materials delays nor weather. The combined forces of Prime BEEF Team #10 had proven that jointly individuals from different bases were as capable of working together, organizing, and with little reliable supervision could perform at the highest standards of which made all Prime BEEF members mostly the historical “combat engineers” in training throughout the continuing 10 years of service in the Republic of Vietnam.

Since Prime BEEF Team #10 had become two separate units it was much more able to cover the immediate needs of the in-country command structure, and then stretch out to four different air bases and complete some major projects of urgency for the air mission to bed down personnel, and the incoming troops living conditions were improved and with structures in place to receive them upon arrival at those bases of support. Prime BEEF had already gotten the troops up out of the mud and had provided the newer quarters sheltered in dormitories than those initially put into tents an improvement along with shops and offices in which to get to work. Better defended and housing had made living stable and safe from any normal expectancies of war. Pride within them and with urgency they had fulfilled the mission assignments and their daily achievements all accumulated during the hard days working in weather as hot as the climate was different than that of some of the team members were accustomed.

They went on working 12-hour shifts and at times on bended knees got the tasks completions done by expedient methods and standard techniques used of professionalism. History was achieved only with the steadfast desire to accomplish the mission objectives and the endeavors with which leads the youth of our generation tasked to support a war…our own defense of the Nation. And as we look back on those outstanding efforts and accomplishment it should make us proud of becoming a larger part all necessary to modernize the bases in times of combat and new construction requirements met for the air mission support of the United States Air Force. Our mission achievements had changed the ways of thinking within Civil Engineering as the military troops had demonstrated that each of us were capable of professional tasking well beyond maintenance and repair. We had become the first of the status of being “combat engineers.” Working with a ranking Captain R. D. Turner as team leader and TSgt N. H. Sandlin as NCOIC as overhead was kept at a minimum but construction crews were SSgt and below. A monumental tasking of new construction completed by USAF’s best serving under direct fire and enemy conditions of greatest urgency for jobs of individual talents, skills, and perseverance.
Captain R. D. Turner Team Chief

TSgt N. H. Sandlin NCOIC

TSgt W.E. Brown Construction Section

Foundation and Site Preparation Section
TSgt M. D. George

Electrical Section
TSgt O. B. Swicegood

Construction Crew #1
SSgt R. T. Malone
SSgt B. J. Brennan
A1C P. D. Farabee

Site Preparation crew
SSgt P. Purvis
A1C W. A. Bowers
A2C J. E. Shank

Construction Crew #2
SSgt W. D. Wheat
SSgt P. J. Taylor

Foundation Crew
SSgt E. W. Ford
A2C B. C. Pruett
A2C L. S. Lewis
A2C J. Mancino

Construction Crew #3
SSgt A. T. Jenkins
A1C Faught

Surveying Crew
SSgt B. K. Bucknell

Construction Crew #4
SSgt Gluege

Construction Crew #5
SSgt E. G. Mitchell

Construction Crew #6
SSgt D. Green Sr.

Construction Crew #7 SSgt G.E. Morton

Plumbing Crew
A1C D. E. Howard
A1C B. R. Whittall
A1C A. E. Eldredge

Administration Section
A1C C.E. Strohman
Electrical Crew #1
A1C H. L. Carino Jr.
A1C G. Fierro
Wayland Davis
Posts: 140
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2005 7:17 pm
Location: Freeport, FL

Return to Prime Beef

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest