OASIS—NVA bunker complexes are often
described as ingenious.
The one found recently by the Famous Fourth
Division’s 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry proved to be no
Sweeping a stream bed in the Chu Prong
mountains, 11 miles north of Pleiku, elements of Charlie Company
passed what appeared to be a rock filled ravine. Two NVA graves
and two AK-47s were found In the area. Suspicions aroused, the
soldiers returned to the ravine the next day.
There, in the crevices and caves formed by
the rocks, they discovered the remains of an NVA battalion-sized
aid station. "We knew immediately that this was some kind
of medical facility;" commented Captain Guy R. Marbury of
Republic, Pa., Charlie Company commander.
"There were empty plasma and penicillin
bottles and many used bandages scattered throughout the complex.
The NVA seemingly left the area about three weeks previously,
after the area was, hit with heavy air strikes. They left in a
hurry, not bothering to completely bury their dead."
The complex began at the bottom of the ravine
where several sleeping positions were hidden In the dark
recesses of the rocks. Inside the cave bamboo had been cut into
strips and woven together to form sleeping platforms. Further up
the ravine was a log and dirt covered bunker forming an
underground room ten feet by ten feet. In the back a small
fireplace had been built. According to Captain Mar-bury, this
was probably their mess hall.
Nearer the top of the ravine was a large
opening formed by the boulders. Inside, an operating table and
several sleeping positions had been constructed. Several natural
tunnels branched off from this room spiraling down further
between the rocks. At each level sleeping positions had been
built. At the bottom was a small underground stream which could
be heard gurgling throughout the cave. In all, the one complex
could accommodate 12 to 15 patients.
At the top of the ravine were more sleeping
positions and a large open pit-like crevice. "This might
have been a morgue," commented Specialist 4 Warren Jarrard
of Orlando, Fla., Charlie Company’s medic. "There was
only one entrance and we found several shrouds inside. It was
also set apart from the rest of the complex."