101 airborne combat patch
ALPHA ORIGINALS
2nd Battalion
April 10, 1968
PHUOC DIEN

On April 10th, A and D Companies were sent to verify the reported presence of two enemy
companies entrenched in strong defensive positions in the village of Phuoc Dien. In short time,
both companies were pinned down and in heavy contact. It soon became obvious they would be
unable to take the village without suffering heavy casualties and they would need additional
reinforcements.

General Barsanti, the Division Commander, ordered the companies to "stay with the enemy" and
agreed to send them whatever they needed -- which in this case was extra helicopters to bring in
reinforcements. LTC Tallman, the battalion commander, moved B Company into the fray, and by
nightfall had succeeded in completely surrounding the village. American positions were established
no more than ten meters apart. LTC Tallman ordered 100% alert during the night as well as
continuous illumination by flare ships and artillery.   

Between 2000 hours that night and 0730 hours the next morning, the trapped NVA made at least
12 separate attempts to break out of the village. The next morning, 36 NVA soldiers were found
dead within hand-grenade distance of the American positions. Two dazed NVA were captured and
taken prisoner. At 0800, companies B and D assaulted the village in a coordinated attack that met
only moderate resistance. When the smoke and dust had cleared, the
2/501st had killed 70 NVA
and captured 13.   

Provide by: Jim
Lanning