Dave Sims flew Huey helicopters in Vietnam

Dave Sims flew Huey helicopters in Vietnam

Spend just a few minutes with Dave Sims and you're sure to be talking about the Huey Helicopter.

"Our job was to go out and find the enemy, fix them and then call in the heavyweights: Air Force, big Army, whatever they deemed appropriate," said Sims.  "So we were an air reconnaissance unit."

Sims flew Huey helicopters in Vietnam. They called it the "Helicopter War" because there were so few words, the helicopter was a workhorse.

"I was shot at a lot but I was fortunately never shot down. It's strange, in one year of flying, I took one round through a main rotor blade and that was my only hit I took. But we were out there every day."

In his one year in Vietnam, Sims received 20 air medals, 2 Bronze Stars and a Silver Star for rescuing fellow soldiers and civilians under enemy fire.

"Somehow, 2 Vietnamese men, a Vietnamese woman carrying a baby had limbed on the aircraft with us. I didn't ask for their ticket. I said, "we're going." I think I took off with 17 people that time and we normally carried 5 or 6."

Sims says he learned a camaraderie and fellowship that was hard to describe, noting that units that were engaged in combat usually had higher morale than other soldiers.