Storm of steel at Ap Trang Dau
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What occurred in the early morning hours of Sept 6th, 1968, in the village of Ap Trang Dau can only be described as “a living hell.”
The bloody battle took place three miles east of Trang Bang in Hau Nghia province of III Corps Tactical Zone. Just hours earlier, on Sept. 5th, 96 men of A Co, 3rd Bn, 187th Inf. (“Rakikasans”), 101st Abn Div, were flown into near the village, which was located close to Highway QL-1 some 26 miles north of Saigon.
Their orders were to assist B. Co, 2nd Bn, 506 Inf, 101st Abn Div, in cordoning off the village. Some believed high-ranking Viet Cong (VC) and North Vietnamese Army (NVA) officials were in the area, while intelligence reports claimed that two VC battalions were based there. The American intent was to secure the area and prevent the enemy from breaking through.