Dale & Martha
Griffin Writes - Roger was a very well known
Jerry Rogers Writes
- Roger Henson, class of 66, can be found on
Pastor Charles G. Clary
has provided the following which was
The voice on the radio transmission was wrought with emotion. It simply and painfully said, "Helicopter 463 has crashed and is burning. All occupants are lost. Three are on the ground. One is still inside. Get here quickly!"
Back in the United States Army's 25th Infantry Division, Troop D, 3rd Squadron, 4th Cavalry headquarters at Cu Chi, Vietnam, a hurried look at the Flight Schedule Board grimly reminded everyone that Jerry M. Robert of West Monroe, Louisiana was dead. He was assigned as Crew Chief on the ill-fated flight.
Immediately, the number two Gun Team siren sounded. Within seconds the crew loaded and the chopper was air-borne. The pilot was granted permission by the Air Traffic Controller to break the normal flight pattern and to cut across the Chu Chi base camp.
"Clear left, Boom Boom", cried Crew Chief Jerry H. Robert. The pilot glanced back and excitedly shouted, "Robby, what are you doing on this helicopter? Where's Hart? Who's on 4-6-3?" Pointing to the seat on his right, Jerry answered, "Hart's right there. Roger Henson and his gunner took our place on 463."
An M-79 grenade had blasted away about one-fourth of the downed chopper's propeller. The ominous cloud of black smoke belching out of it told the story. The fire was finally extinguished and then came the hardest part. Roger Henson's body must be removed from the aircraft.
It was mid-morning on December 27, 1967. Jerry and his gunner, John K. Hart of Mississippi, had flown missions all night and had just arrived back at the base. Roger Henson went over to Jerry's bunk and said, "Robby, you and Hart have been flying night and day for the past week and a half on number one standby. I haven't had to leave the base. Why don't you let me and my gunner take number one standby on 463 for you and Hart for the day and let you get some rest?"
Within five minutes, the number one Gun Team siren went off. Roger and his gunner hurriedly boarded Helicopter 463. There was absolutely no time to change the names on the Schedule Board. Little did they know that this would be their last mission.
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. on panel #32E line #73 reads, "Roger L. Henson".
And Jerry M. Robert today pays the highest tribute to the memory of the brave, young soldier, whom he says, "died in my place".
By Pastor Charles G. Clary 1 First Assembly of God Post Office Box 675 Des Allemands, LA 70030
1Jerry M. Robert's former pastor.
If you have any information or remembrances you would