LZ Margo and the DMZ
Battalion Landing Team 2/26 was the bulked-up 2nd Battalion of the 26th Marine Regiment. With added specialized units and firepower, it could operate independently anyplace an amphibious or heli-borne force of over sixteen hundred battle-tested Marines was needed.
In Vietnam's northern I Corps in 1968, that was a lot of places.
2/26 had cut its teeth at the siege of Khe Sanh early in 1968, and then for several months had operated out of bases just south of the DMZ: at Camp Carroll, the Rockpile and Con Thien.
The area of operations for Battalion Landing Team 2/26 during September and October 1968 stretched across the Demilitarized Zone area between North and South Vietnam. Each grid square is one kilometer on a side (10km = 6.2 mi). The area shown is 15-25 miles west of the Gulf of Tonkin. Click to expand the map.
In mid-September 1968, we were under operational control of the 9th Marines, commanded by Colonel Robert Barrow.
Our mission was to sweep a swath of the DMZ looking for trouble, and as a heavily reinforced Marine battalion, we had the means to do so.
Until LZ Margo, that is.