Late in our Vietnam tour Victor 3 Company 'captured' a Citroen Traction Avant car hidden away in the jungle near the French run Don Dien de Courtenay Rubber Estate. Below is a photograph of the car taken shortly after its capture ...
Standing bereft of webbing is our much respected Company Commander John Hall. John was awarded the Military Cross for his simply outstanding leadership of the Company over its 12 month tour. My colleague Bob Kellett, commander of 3 Platoon, is on the extreme right. Can't see TTSS or Lord Egbut in the photograph but they would have been close by.
The car was recovered back to our Nui Dat base ... note the large bullet hole in the driver's door.
Back at base and before its face lift. Note the number plate NVA (North Vietnamese Army!!!) 601.
Why a number plate FFS.
It was refurbished by mechanics from our RAEME Light Aid Detachment and when finished we gifted it to the nurses (including NZ Nurses) at the 1st Australian Field Hospital at Vung Tau in appreciation. They used it as transport down to the beach. This is what the car looked when we handed it over ....
The nurses reinforced its rather distinctive colour scheme with very large flower-power stickers all over. The car become an icon in Vung Tau. It was left behind when the 1st Australian Logistic Support Group (1 ALSG) pulled out.
Would be fascinating to know what happened to it. Off to Blenheim shortly for the Victor 3 Company reunion. Will ask the question there ... and BTW, a big thank you to Ministers Judith Collins and David Bennett who each donated wine to be auctioned at the reunion with the proceeds going to the Vietnam Veterans (Neville Wallace Memorial) Children's & Grandchildren's Trust which I am privileged to Chair. Judith is a Vice-Patron of the Trust; David is the Minister of Veterans' Affairs.
1 hour ago