Vietnam War Helicopter Door Gunners: "Shotgun Rider" circa 1967 US Army UH-1 Huey 29min

more at http://quickfound.net/links/military_news_and_links.html

"This film is about the helicopter door gunner, nicknamed 'Shotgun Rider.' He was a new addition to the helicopter crew, and the film shows him as he performed some of his various duties in Vietnam, after a rigorous training program."

also see: Shotgun Rider Training

Public domain film from the National Archives, slightly cropped to remove uneven edges, with the aspect ratio corrected, and 1-pass exposure & color correction applied (cannot be ideal in all scenes).
The soundtrack was also processed with volume normalization, noise reduction, clipping reduction, and/or equalization (the resulting sound, though not perfect, is far less noisy than the original).


A door gunner is a crewman tasked with firing and maintaining manually directed armament aboard a helicopter. The actual role will vary depending on the task given on a particular mission...

The role of "Door Gunner" originated during the Vietnam War, when helicopters were first used in combat in large numbers. The original personnel who served as early Door Gunners aboard CH-21, UH-34, and UH-1 helicopters in Vietnam, were enlisted men, with a designated and specially trained 'Crew Chief' serving as both the aircraft's maintenance manager and a Door Gunner. And normally, a second enlisted Soldier served as a second Door Gunner (such as on a UH-1, and UH-34, which both used two gunners (one on each side of the aircraft)). Later, as the War progressed, the Door Gunner position sometimes used a non-aviation rated/trained Soldier or Marine, that volunteered for Door Gunner duties.

For the majority of the Vietnam War, the principal weapon of the Door Gunner in Vietnam was a Medium Machine Gun (MG), initially, a M-1919A4 .30 Caliber MG, and soon thereafter, the M-60 7.62mm MG became the standard helicopter door armament system. However, when a helicopter was not armed or outfitted with a dedicated MG for door armament, the Door Gunner was forced to use a rifle, or a carbine, as a defensive weapon. (Thus, some Door Gunners in Vietnam are sometimes seen using an M1 Carbine, an M14 rifle, or an M16 rifle, as their only weapon.) (In the very first U.S. Army helicopter units (flying CH-21 helicopters) that began flying combat missions in Vietnam in 1962, some helicopters were not armed with a door MG, and the Door Gunners thus carried an M1 Carbine, or an M14 rifle, as the sole door weapon.)

Initially, the Door Gunner's MG weapons were mounted on swiveling mounts (on a pintle mount) in order to retain and steady the door armament weapon, which was usually an M60 machine gun. As the War progressed, using bungee cords to suspend/retain the MG weapons became a common practice for Door Gunners, as the newfound maneuverability of these 'bungeed' MG weapons allowed for increased angles to shoot from. Further, some Door Gunners simply did not use any retention device with their MG weapons (such as a pintle mount, or a bungee cord), and instead, they simply hand-held the weapon for a maximum level of maneuverability of fire. This practice was commonly termed as using a "Free 60", referring to the directional freedom of an unrestrained M-60 MG.

Door Gunners were normally restrained for safety within the aircraft, by either using a standard seat lap belt, or if the Gunner wanted freedom of movement within the aircraft while still being retained, he used a "Monkey Harness", which was a GI safety harness worn on the torso, and anchored to the aircraft floor, or cabin wall. The "Monkey Harness" allowed a Door Gunner great movement, while preventing them from from falling out of the helicopter completely, i.e. if they leaned outward on the helicopter skids, to get a better firing angle.

The Door Gunner position was not a particularly popular one, due to the inherent vulnerability of manning a machine gun in the open door of a helicopter. According to popular legend, the door gunner on a Vietnam era Huey gun ship had a life-span of 5 minutes... Today, helicopters like the UH-60 have two machine guns firing out of two windows located behind the pilots. The CH-46, CH-47 and CH-53 have an additional gun that is fired from the rear ramp. The UH-1 (still in use by the U.S. Marine Corps) is still manned as it was in the Vietnam War, actually firing from an open cabin door...


The Bell UH-1 Iroquois is a military helicopter powered by a single, turboshaft engine, with a two-bladed main rotor and tail rotor. The helicopter... first flew on 20 October 1956. Ordered into production in March 1960... more than 16,000 have been produced worldwide.

The first combat operation of the UH-1 was in the service of the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War. The original designation of HU-1 led to the helicopter's nickname of Huey...

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Автор Dan Mulcrone (29 дней)
I liked the video, and its subject matter. Only, one thing caught my eye,
and I may be wrong. At approximately 14:20 in the video of troops entering
the KC-135, the engine in the picture was not the straight jet
(water-injected) J-57 of the Vietnam era.

Автор mentalphysicalism (5 месяцев)
In 1968 they had large draft quotas so anybody who was able to walk into
the medical evaluation center and could see good enough to not bump into
anything passed the medical exam.

Автор Lutece FLINDT (2 месяца)
LOL spongebob music at 12:13

Автор Chase Fite (6 месяцев)
Lol Hawaii was definatley the selling point on this ine. 

Автор aquadragon1 (5 месяцев)
American soldiers are second too non ? That must be a joke. The US forces
are richer then anyone else THAT is the primairy factor in their "succes".
Not individual skill or mental capacities.

Автор Cyberphobe (7 месяцев)
This vid reminds me of a story that a Vietnam vet told me. He was a door
gunner of a Hue and on a few occasions his chopper transported NVA and
N.Vietnam prisoners off the battlefield only he would make sure not all of
the prisoners would make it back for interrogation. Mid flight he would
kick one or two overboard.

Автор MrSebfrench76 (3 месяца)
At 26.01, 2 Vietnamese cabs,testimony from the former French occupation,
models are Renault 4 CV.

Автор PlasmaCoolantLeak (5 месяцев)
Ah, who got Hawaii for a duty station? Not I.

Автор Bushrod Rust Johnson (8 месяцев)
Anyone who runs is a VC!

Автор G. Scott Hughes (6 месяцев)
11:51 "they told us that fighting in vietnam is a little like fighting the
japanese in the south pacific." uhh..NOTT!

Автор Conlan0215 (5 месяцев)
Oh, propaganda....

Автор methylene5 (2 месяца)
"Ever killed any women or children?"
"Sometimes !"

Автор escole48 (6 месяцев)
This was a great video. I like the old style way the narrator presents the
documentary. I think the pilots and gunners were brave. I'd be terrified
doing such a job. It was a very messy and dirty business as is all wars,
but those who were conscripted to fight it, are brave men on both sides of
the equation.

Автор Robert Ransley (3 месяца)
What propaganda...."let the people of Viet Nam decide for themselves...."
Riiiight....LOL, what BS. I know a man who was a jet mechanic for Hueys,
he wasn't supposed to see action, his job was to repair the engines, right?
Wrong, it got so bad, he told me, door gunners were dying like flies that
he was ordered to fly shotgun on the huey he maintained.

Автор SuperStig23 (5 месяцев)
I fondly remember a guy I met in the mid 80's who was drafted in 67' scored
high on his induction tests and opted to be a medic as he was a practicing
Roman Catholic.

He knew he was in trouble when they had their first Chopper ride, while
training the Pilot went up to about a hundred feet and cut the engine with
no warning , the new guys ALL started screaming and crapped their pants,
the Pilot was laughing the whole way down to a VERY hard landing, later
they found out the Pilot had already flown 2 combat tours, and he was so
crazy nobody would fly with him anymore, everybody on the base already knew
this, welcome to the ARMY !! :)

Very modest, he would never accept my stunned admiration, he always said
the Huey Pilots were the bravest men he had ever met.Yes he was proud of
the wounded guys they had saved but they never made up for hundreds they
lost and the dead who many times had to be literally shoveled into body
bags just like meat.

Despite constant ribbing from newbie big-mouth Macho Grunts he actually saw
MORE action than any of them except the special forces guys who in contrast
loved the evac pilots and medics, they knew if they got into the sh*t who
would come and get them even if it was too hot for anyone else.

He was shot down seven times, wounded 4 times, but by some miracle he made
it home in one piece physically but the horror of what he had seen lived
with him the rest of his too-short life, unable to cope he slowly drank
himself to death.

Let's THINK before we send our kids into stupid wars again, have we learned
NOTHING ?? Get all of our troops out of these bogus wars, Bush believed
his own BS, Obama knew it was BS but kept it going as both parties need the
$Billions from Wall St and Defense Industry to get re-elected and line
their greedy pockets, which is worse ?? a tough call.


Автор True Grit (26 дней)
I really enjoyed this video.

Автор walkyree honda (4 месяца)
In 1965 I was born in Thailand 

Автор Daryl Buck (7 месяцев)
Ahhhh The US Army version... Finally the truth...

Автор hobieslug45 (4 месяца)
they left out part two the antidepressants the methadone the xanax and the
nightmare meds . the waking up in the middle of the night to find that you
almost bit your tounge off and broke a tooth. and then there is part three

Автор John Smith (21 день)
10:44 Juli Andrews... tasty dish... Lol

Автор ozzthorn258 (2 месяца)
"two of hawaii's freindly guides' sure, i know they are prostitutes chum,
now get back to being a barracks rat

Автор takitimu08 (6 месяцев)
do you feel any remorse??

Автор Lonnie Moore (3 месяца)
looking for anyone from the 23rd inf div 1971 196 inf 72

Автор M60gunner1971 (2 месяца)
Are you fucking shitting me?!!?

Автор datanerator (2 месяца)

Автор bcaulf (7 месяцев)
"It's typical of the Viet Cong mentality that they make a special effort to
get us when we land on a medevac mission." Typical oriental mentality, so
sneaky. Makes you want to just carpet bomb their industry until their
society collapses.

Автор david sloan (7 месяцев)
War is the roughest time for everybody. We men look back and see men
fighting since, forever. On the brightest future ,, I ,, pray for, is we
stop fighting and chill. #1 reality says to ,, me ,, says, can't bet a
future on that,, right? # 2 reality says to me so arm up.

Автор John Sieren (5 месяцев)

Автор MrSebfrench76 (3 месяца)
Same business as usual on Youtube.USA sucks,governement lies,poor VCs,bla
bla bla...
On the french Youtube it's the same:,in the comments regarding French
today's wars,we find the same cone-heads,talking of things they will never
understand,speaking like generals,behind their COD 's screens...
This film is a gold nugget.Thanks to share it with us.

Автор eacobra (8 месяцев)
Anyone that stands still is a well disciplined VC

Автор walkyree honda (4 месяца)
This is about in Vietnam war 

Автор Daryl Buck (7 месяцев)
Duty Post Hawaii... Where do I sign up?

Автор G. Scott Hughes (6 месяцев)
2:33..smoke 'em if ya got 'em!

Автор HUTCHfromBA (29 дней)
What joker posted this BS ?

Автор Kathleen Winters (5 месяцев)
i was a pre-teen in 1960 didn't see all these documentaries, i knew
governments used alot of propaganda but i was so disappointed to see all
these lies
i have a cousin who bought into this bs 

Автор Adam Carr (4 месяца)
The Vietnamese were worse than Nazis they committed genocide against Champa
and the Khmer Krom. We should've bombed these bastards to the stone age
like LBJ said.

Автор j lin (4 месяца)
lol i seen parts of this in esar wow 

Автор william b Farr (1 год)
To a close friend, STEVEN H. US ARMY, Door Gunner

Автор Joe A Merican (10 месяцев)
Vietnam War Helicopter Door Gunners: "Shotgun Rider" circa 1967 US Army
UH-1 Huey 29min

Автор MrSkypony (8 месяцев)
There was no MOS for door gunner. I applied to the army board a few years
ago to get the MOS as a second MOS and was told there has been no door
gunner MOS since the bombers of WW2. Vietnam with C/159th ASHB 101st
Airborne 1969-70

Автор takitimu08 (7 месяцев)
How many innocent people did these door gunners mow down?

Автор Kosmos Erdem (5 месяцев)
Why would you need so many health checks for a gunner? If his heart failed
just kick him out of the chopper. 

Автор Roy Rogers (3 месяца)
........fucking ridiculous tactics........

Автор JiG3 (16 дней)
Whether this is propagande or not.. I liked it lol

Автор gschupfter (8 месяцев)
I have the biggest respect for you Veterans!
greets from austria

Автор GeorgeBonez (7 месяцев)
Check out all of the non or Anti-American sour-pussy comments on this vid!
hahaha Aww bless their lil dumbass hearts! They are still mad cause we
whipped their fucking asses then picked them up out of the dirt to dust
uneducated, DUMBED-DOWN, INBRED COMMIES are bound and determined to let
some Pellet-giving Dictatorial Gov OWN THEM like the FUCKING
LAZY DOGS THAT THEY ARE! The American concept of liberty & freedom is
simply to hard for them to live up to or ever achieve so they would rather
be enslaved as dogs serving their masters ! They are too fucking lazy to
EVER be in charge of their own lives and survival! SIT little puppy! Now
Roll-OVER little puppy and I'll give you a treat!

Автор Ryan Ehlis (1 месяц)
you got to like the anti communist propaganda BS, now it is the fake war on
terror. Anything to keep the bankers making money on war.

Автор CURTIS LAWSON (2 месяца)

Автор Justin B Hill (1 год)
What delicious propaganda for joining up and volunteering!--fly in
helicopters, shoot cool guns (the M-60 as prone, free, mounted,
free-in-chopper, bungi-strapped), and frolic in the waves with beautiful
tour guides, who obviously have immediate crushes on all American

Автор R VEDHAGANAPATHY (9 месяцев)
is m60 machine gun and m14 riffle uses the same 7.62 mm nato ammunition ?
can anyone tell ?

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