27 July

1953…Korean War armistice signed at Panmunjon, Korea and Korean cease-fire went into effect at 10:00 PM.

1967…An NMCB-3 water truck hit a mine on the Col Co Road; driver sustained minor injury.
…Three daytime and one nighttime artillery attacks at Dong Ha One attack occurred during NMCB-11 Change of Command reception.
…CDR W.K. Hartell, CEC, USN, relieved CDR W.L. Wilson, CEC, USN as Commanding Officer of NMCB-11.
...Camp Barnes was dedicated on 27 July 1967 in memory of EOCS Donald J. Barnes, USN of NMCB-11. Senior Chief Barnes had been fatally wounded on 6 June 1967 during an NVA rocket attack on the Khe Sanh Forward Combat Base where an NMCB-11 Detail was employed to reconstruct the runway.
Camp Barnes was a portion of the Dong Ha Forward Combat Base and was located approximately one-half mile south of the Dong Ha runway and helicopter parking area. When the camp was assigned to NMCB-11 in early April of 1967, over 75% of the real estate was outside of the combat base perimeter. Construction of Camp Barnes and the arrival of other units resulted in an incremental relocation of the perimeter wire to approximately one-half mile south of the Seabee cantonment at the time of the departure of NMCB-11.
To best utilize the terrain of the rea estate provided and to group common facilities in a functional manner, Camp Barnes was layed out as two major areas. One area included the industrial facilities and activities of a Seabee camp and the other contained the administrative, community support and personnel berthing areas. A central core of the camp included the galley, laundry, clubs, PX and other supporting facilities with as much area as possible left for future expansion. Living areas were located and arranged peripheral to the administrative and community support facilities to permit allocation of company areas in conjunction with camp defense requirements. Area allocations of Camp Barnes were:
Rock crusher and batch plants 11.5 acres
MLO/GSK/CTR open and covered storage 13.2 acres
Alpha Company shops and equipment yard 16.8 acres
Bravo, Charlie and Delta shops and yards 9.1 acres
Administrative and Community Support 12.9 acres
Company living areas 42.7 acreas
In all Camp Barnes comprised in excess of 106 acres
The majority of materials required to construct Camp Barnes had been prepositioned at the 30NCR in Da Nang approximately eight months prior to the decision to construct a Seabee camp in the Northern I Corps area. Certain problems were experienced in utilizing these materials:
a) Because of long term storage without protection, much of the lumber was badly weathered and deteriorated. It was quickly and easily determined that future pre-positioning should include frequent rotation of stocks by the holding agency to insure the availability of usable materials.
b) Although every attempt was made by 30NCR to control pilferage of the pre-positioned materials, certain critical items such as electrical and plumbing materials and Butler Building parts, experienced a “midnight requisitioning” process during their period of storage. Consequently, the construction of certain facilities was delayed because of the unavailability of these items.
c) The planning and estimating data when requisitioning the pre-positioned camp materials was no longer available, and planning for additional material requirements of identifying material excesses was extremely difficult. It was suggested that future pre-positioning of the materials for a permanent camp should include a detailed listing and description of facilities being provided so that the potential user could efficiently plan for the disposition of the material stock.
While deployed to Da Nang East during 1966 NMCB-11 designed a new berting hut for Seabee camp construction. The berthing huts erected at Camp Barnes were a further improvement of this design to better adapt the structure to the climatic and tactical environment of the Dong Ha area.)
The Camp Barnes SEAhuts retained the same squad oriented berting cubicles as the previous deployment’s design. However, an additional common area was situated at the middle of each hut to serve as a reading and writing room and also to accommodate the tent heaters provided in Part II of the P25A allowance. The monsoon climate of Dong Ha made these heaters a virtual necessity.
Wherein the previous design provided for the maximum of ventilation, the Dong Ha hut was contructed with 4’-0” plywood sides and only 2’-0” of top opening. Side curtains were fabricated from surveyed tents to further stop penetration of rain, cold winds and dry season dust.
The Dong Ha Combat Base was subject to frequent mortar, rocket and artillery attack and all berting huts within the area were required to be provided with peripheral sandbag type protection to a height above the level of a man sleeping in a bunk. With this type of protection emergency side wall exit panels were not feasible. Accordingly, eight emergency exit panels were constructed in each floor and two parallel trenches were excavated under and lengthwise to each hut. A cross trench at the center of the hut led out to a covered bunker on each side. Most personnel removed the exit panels and placed their weapons and boots alongside the emergency exit panels before going to bed for the night. With a minimum of delay men could be out of their bunks, into a trench and under covered protection in the event of an attack.
Initial excavations within the Camp Barnes area indicated an abundance of subterranean termites. Because of the magnitude of the project soil poisoning was not feasible. Accordingly, the standard timber plate and pedestal underhut supporting system was abandoned and all wood floor structures within the camp were supported on expended 175mm metal powder canisters augered below ground and set in concrete. A continual inspection program was established to insure tat the termites did not gain access to the timber structures.
The construction of a permanent Seabee camp at the Dong Ha Combat base was the largest single project assigned to NMCB-11 during its 1967 deployment. The completed construction required slightly less than 25,000 mandays, involving 30% of the construction efforts of the Battalion deployment and accounted for a total of $488,877 (1967 dollars) of material in place. A significant portion of the construction effort of Camp Barnes was included in the additional bunkers, fortifications, sandbagging, trenches and perimeter fence installation required at the Dong Ha forward area.
Senior Chief Equipment Operator Barnes was the first to be killed in action while serving with the main body of the Battalion (MCB-11) during two Vietnam deployments.
At the time of his death he was serving with a 70-man detail from the Battalion assigned to rebuild the airfield at Khe Sanh. At approximately 1 a.m. on the morning of 06 June Khe Sanh came under heavy rocket attack with 48 140mm rockets falling within the camp. Two of the rockets impacted within the Seabee compound with one exploding near and killing Senior Chief Barnes.
Senior Chief Barnes was born in Morristown, PA, on 12 August, 1931, and entered the Navy on 23 Sept 51. During his career he served with MCB’s Two, Four, Six, and Elevan, along with duty at the Naval Construction Schools, at Davisville, RI, as an instructor in Atomic, Biological, and Chemical Warfare.
Senior Chioef Barnes reported to MCB-11 on 20 July 1966, and served as the Alpha Company’s Leading Chief

1968…NMCB-58 provided 200 bags of cement to be used by Vietnamese people in the construction of seven wells for the hamlet of Hoa Phuc (L7014, 6641 III; 958805).
…Seabee Team 0102 arrived at Phu Vinh, Vinh Binh Province, and commenced work on a new Team compound.
…The NMCB-10 pre-deployment party arrived at Camp Haines. Included in the party were CDR. D.A. Bartley, CO NMCB-10, LCDR. D. Kenin, Supply Officer, and Lt. J.M. Smith, Alpha Company Commander.
… The joint Navy, Army, Air Force, Vietnamese government refugee housing project, Operation Dong Tam, neared completion during July. The Seabee portion of this project included housing for 675 refugee families made homeless during Tet and May fighting in the Saigon area. A Dong Tam dedication ceremony was held at Cholon on 27 July. Among those receiving awards from Prime Minister Tran Van Huong were Rear Admiral Bartlett, the MCB-58 project officer, and the enlisted crew leader.

1969… NMCB-11 Detail Sally returned to Camp Haines

1970… An NMCB-62 MRS scraper detonated a 40 pound mine under a recently paved section of Route QL-1-D resulting in major equipment damage and one Seabee receiving minor injuries. Two ARVN’s walking nearby detonated an antipersonnel mine requiring their evacuation. Later in the day, three ARVN’s on a motor bike detonated an unknown size mine on Route LTL-4 resulting in all being KIA.

1971… NMCB-5’s Detail Colt completed construction of the Quang Xuyen pier and returned to Bien Hoa

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