My command before I went on board the Richard S. Edwards was the USS COONTZ DLG-9, which was a guided missle frigate. I spent two tours of duty on the Coontz in the Tonkin Gulf. On my second tour of duty to the Tonkin Gulf the Coontz was attacked by three North Vietnamese PT boats, and when we found out that we couldn't outrun the PT boats, we called in the carrier aircraft, and the F4-Phantoms made short the incidents. The PT boats fired their torpedoes at us, but they missed us. The F4-Phantoms sank all three of the PT boats, and we captured 19 survivors from the sinking. We went to DeNang harbor to get rid of the prisinors, but we couldn't offload them to South Vietnam since there was no established war taking place. It was called a police action, not a war, so we dumped the prisinors off onto an oiler that was out in the harbor, and tne tried to find a place that would accept us for R&R. We caused an international incident, and the only place we could find that we could go for R&R wasTiawon, China. We couldn't go to Japan, or Hong Kong, or the Phillipines. What a crazy Police action was was in, and I'm glad that the Coontz made it back home.
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