25th , Helicopter commander. Please watch over America, it stills needs your strength, courage and faithfulness. Rest in peace with the angels.
For his family
The career officer had served nine years in the US Army. Major Houser served as a helicopter pilot during his tour of duty in South Viet Nam. He had been stationed near Cu Chi Viet Nam for 10 months near the Delta region of the war torn country.
Major Houser was the subject of a feature article in The Times News on May 15, 1967. The article depicted how Major Houser and another Army major directed the Army's "Teenie Weenie Air Force" in the region. It pointed out how Major Houser and his fellow officers were responsible for hundreds of helicopters flights per day, around the clock.
Arrangements are pending at Warlick Funeral Home.
Another article on October, 18 1967: Funeral services for Major Charles Milton Houser, who was killed in action in South Viet Nam Friday, will be held Thursday at 3 PM at Hebron Methodist Church. The body will lie in state 30 minutes and burial will be in the Church cemetery. Major Houser is survived by his wife, three sons, two sisters, Mrs Bud Boyles, Miss Debbie Houser both on Route 2, Vale. The family will receive friends tonight (Wednesday) from 7 until 9 PM at Warlick Funeral Home Chapel. Arnold M. Huskins, [email protected]
I was the Operations Officer of Bravo Company; 25th Aviation Battalion in 1967 and assigned Chuck to the mission on which he was killed. He was assigned to Batttalion HQ's and got his flight time with us. He asked for the mission that day and had completed their last firing pass when in the break, a single round struck him in the neck just above the Chicken Plate. He was a hell of a guy and a great leader. I was the SAO for his wife, a duty I've never forgotten. I probably did not do it justice but I hope his family continues to remember what a great guy he was. Stu Gerald.
I served with Major Houser during his entire time in Vietnam. He was a man who cared about his fellow soldiers, enlisted and officer. The night before he died, he spent time with me talking me out of reenlisting in the Army. I remember him telling me that the Army was not what it once was and that a young man like me ought to go home to his girl and be thankful for being an American. I took his advice and went home after 19 months at Cu Chi. The next day he died after responding to a Mayday call for a gunship team to counter snipers that were harrassing the 65th Engineers as they blew up tunnels the VC were using to get under our home base. I miss Chuck to this day and have made the Rolling Thunder Run (1997) to honor him. Andre Saxby, SP5, Cu Chi, March 66 - Oct 67, Andre Saxby.
Major Hauser was killed by an AK-47 round fired from the ground as he was firing at a tree line where snipers had been shooting at men of the 65th Engineer Battalion who were blowing up some of the tunnels under Cu Chi. Major Hauser was flying as pilot on a C-Model Huey at the time. His gunship had been scrambled at around noon in response to an emergency call from the engineer battalion. I have been to the wall In Washington and to the moving wall here in New Hampshire to honor his memory. He was a wonderful person who was highly thought of by both enlisted and officer personnel. To this day I miss him. I worked in the flight ops hooch from shortly after we arrived in Nam from Hawaii until right after Major Hauser was killed. I was the person who received the emergency radio call and scrambled the gun team that day.- Ron Leonard for Andre Saxbe.
He was the Husband of Mrs Sarah Houser of Lincolnton, North Carolina.
He served with Bravo Company, 25th Aviation Battalion, 25th Infantry Division, "Tropic Lightning", USARV.
He was awarded Army Aviator's Wings, The Purple Heart Medal for his combat related wounds, The Vietnam Service Medal, The Republic of Vietnam Campaign Service Medal, The National Defense Service Medal, The Air Medal with Multiple Oak Leaf Clusters.
Remembering An American Hero
As an American, I would like to thank you for your service and for your sacrifice made on behalf of our wonderful country. The youth of today could gain much by learning of heroes such as yourself, men and women whose courage and heart can never be questioned.
May God allow you to read this, and may He allow me to someday shake your hand when I get to Heaven to personally thank you. May he also allow my father to find you and shake your hand now to say thank you; for America, and for those who love you.
With respect, and the best salute a civilian can muster for you, Sir
Final Mission of MAJ Charles M. Houser
There are two accounts of this incident: First Account - MAJ Charles M. Houser was killed in Hau Nhia Province, just off the approach end of runway 22 at Cu Chi, 25th Div Airfield. MAJ Houser was flying low level and was shot by a rifleman that was not located. The bullet entered the aircraft through the window of the right (pilot's) door, entered his body between the Kevlar panels of the 'chicken board', then through the lacing on his Flak Vest and ricocheted inside his body. He remarked to his AC 'I'm hit' and slumped forward on the controls. The crew chiefgunner pulled him off the controls by his shoulder straps. They were low level, about ten feet above the ground and about one mile off the end of the runway when he was hit. None of the crew heard the shot and thought he was kidding. The AC grabbed the controls, called 12th Evac Hosp and flew directly to the hospital about two miles away. When they landed doctors were on the helipad to examine him, and he was rushed immediately into the ER where he was pronounced DOAKIA. His assigned duty was Division Aviation Officer and he was flying for time to earn his flight pay for that month. I think he was initially in B Company and then went to his duties as Division Aviation Officer. As HHC had no aircraft, I believe that he, like myself, flew with whoever needed a pilot or wherever he could obtain a bird. As I recall, he flew only enough to receive flight pay. When he flew, he took every precaution for safety available. He flew with the front and rear panels of the Chickenboard over the top of his flak vest and always put flak vests in the chin bubble. I'm not sure whether he sat on a flak vest or not but believed that he did. He was a great guy and no one teased him about the extra precautions he took. Everyone knew of his precautions and was amazed when he was killed with a single shot that had to be the golden BB. As I told you, the round came through the pilot's window, barely missing the vertical support for the window, entered between the two chicken board panels, then went through the lacings of the flak vest. Everyone was amazed by his death and all agreed, 'it was just his time to go'. I was the Airfield Commander and commanded 341st Airfield Operation Detachment, Cu Chi, RVN. I talked to the AC and crew of the aircraft to learn the details of his death. I do not remember any of the names of the crew. (Reported by Bobbie G. Pedigo, LTC AR (Ret) September 2005) Second Account - I have just discovered the account of Major Houser's death and wish to add the following: I was flying as wingman in that fire team. 1Lt Frank Owens (Diamondhead 36) was the AC of MAJ Houser's aircraft. The area of operations was cleared terrain riddled with tunnels and spider holes. There had been some enemy fire, but only sporadic. Nevertheless, it was a major tunnel complex throughout the war and extended under the airfield. Sniping from that area was a common occurrence. The lead aircraft of the fire team was performing reconnaissance at very low level when the fatality occurred. (From Joe Shipes) [Taken from vhpa.org]