Life of a Door Gunner

A conversation with a veteran – Victor Smith of the This was an interview with Victor ‘Vic’ Smith, a Vietnam veteran who served with the RAAF No. 9 Squadron as a Huey door gunner.

Despite being a dangerous job, vets who served as door gunners have been overlooked in many interviews, and we felt it was necessary for all of those who served in Vietnam to have their stories told.

Other airfield defence guards like Vic volunteered to work as door gunners with the RAAFs 9 Squadron, which served in Southeast Asia from 1966 to 1975 (the end of the war) and worked as medevac (dustoff), attack/support, and ‘people sniffer’ (a special program for detecting enemy activity by monitoring air components from the UH-1). The importance of the squadron – such as assisting other forces, working with the SAS (and saving them from dangerous situations), and taking casualties and aircraft losses – is not to be understated. We are taking it upon ourselves to tell these veteran’s stories – they deserve to be heard.

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