Vietnam War: Battle of Con Thien – Documentary Film
Con Thien (Tiếng Việt: Cồn Tiên, meaning the “Hill of Angels”), was a United States Marine Corps combat base located near the Vietnamese Demilitarized Zone about 3 km from North Vietnam.
It was the site of fierce fighting from February 1967 through February 1968.
On 27 February 1967, in response to Marine artillery fire into and the area north of the DMZ (Operation Highrise) NVA mortar, rocket and artillery fire hit Con Thien and Gio Linh. On 20 March, NVA began shelling Con Thien and Gio Linh which continued sporadically for the next two weeks. On 24 March 1st Battalion, 9th Marines began Operation Prairie III where they encounted an NVA battalion in a bunker complex southeast of Con Thien. After a two hour fight the NVA withdrew leaving 33 killed in action. Sergeant Walter K. Singleton was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions in the attack. 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marines (3/3) operating beside 1/9 encountered an entrenched NVA Company, killing 28 NVA including two women.
In mid-April Charlie Company, 11th Engineer Battalion was tasked with clearing a 200m wide strip from Con Thien to Gio Linh, a distance of 10.6 km. The engineers were protected by a task force consisting of the 1st Battalion, 4th Marines, an AMTRAC (LVT-5) platoon, a platoon of M42 Dusters from the 1st Battalion, 44th Artillery and some ARVN units. By 19 April, despite harassment from NVA mines, small arms, recoilless rifle, mortar and artillery fire the strip was half-completed.
In order to protect Route 561, the supply line to Con Thien from Route 9, the Marines had established two outposts, C-2 Base was located 3 km southeast of Con Thien and contained artillery and infantry positions, while C-2A nicknamed the Washout was on low-lying ground overlooking a bridge