Brown, Clyde, SSgt

Communications Systems
 Service Photo   Service Details
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Current Service Status
USAF Veteran
Current/Last Rank
Staff Sergeant
Current/Last Primary AFSC/MOS
29372C-Airborne Radio Communications Technician
Current/Last AFSC Group
Communications Systems
Primary Unit
1968-1969, 29372, 31st Communications Squadron
Previously Held AFSC/MOS
99000-Basic Airman
29231-Apprentice Morse Intercept Operator
29330-Apprentice Ground Radio Operator
29251-Morse Intercept Operator
29350-Ground Radio Operator
29350E-Ground Radio Operator
29352C-Airborne Radio Operator
29372-Airborne Radio and Flight Inspection Technician
Service Years
1956 - 1969
Foreign Language(s)
Official/Unofficial US Air Force Certificates
Cold War Certificate
Cuban Missile Crisis
Enlisted Collar Insignia
Staff Sergeant

 Official Badges 

Missileman (Basic)

 Unofficial Badges 

Cold War Medal KC-135 2000 Hour

 Military Association Memberships
Air Force Together We ServedAir Force Communicators & Air Traffic Controllers AssociationVeterans of the Vietnam WarPost 454, John H. Kraus Post
Post 635Air Force Memorial (AFM)
  2009, Air Force Together We Served [Verified]
  2010, Air Force Communicators & Air Traffic Controllers Association
  2013, Veterans of the Vietnam War
  2014, Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW), Post 454, John H. Kraus Post (Member) (Bloomington, Illinois) - Chap. Page
  2014, American Legion, Post 635 (Deceased Member (Honor Roll)) (Normal, Illinois) - Chap. Page
  2015, Air Force Memorial (AFM) [Verified] - Assoc. Page

 Photo Album   (More...

Project Combat Lightning
From Month/Year
November / 1966
To Month/Year
December / 1970

Project COMBAT LIGHTNING, was originally  developed to establish a command and control facility, which was identified as the Tactical Air Control Center, North Sector (TACC/NS). Located at Monkey Mountain, near Da Nang AB, as stated previously, the call sign of the TACC/NS was MOTEL. With implementation of this plan on 1 November 1966, the task force's responsibility was to provide data to the TACC/NS communication and display system.

In a briefing given on 13 December 1966, Brig. Gen. Joseph J. Kruzel, II PACAF, DCS/Operations, described COMBAT LIGHTNING as a plan “...for the tactical control and airspace management system designed to correlate, direct and monitor tactical air operations involving North Vietnam.”

This encompassed the issuing of border warnings, SAM and MIG warnings, advising aircraft of current enemy defenses and coordinating overall air operations in North Vietnam. The proposed system included automated data processing and display equipments obtained from the ADC BUICK program, located at Monkey Mountain and Udorn RTAFB. At that time, it was envisioned that the task force aircraft would provide radar inputs to the sites at Udorn and Monkey Mountain from three stations: One over Laos, a high station, and a low one over the Gulf of Tonkin. Radio Relay aircraft were to be used as a relay platform to allow ground facilities to communicate directly with tactical aircraft over North Vietnam. There were also to be inputs from other sources, such as from the Navy Positive Identification Radar Advisory Zone (PIRAZ), ship in the Gulf of Tonkin.

As the task force developed greater equipment capabilities, particularly with the installation of the QRC-248 and the AN/GPA-122, there were increasing problems in the interfacing of the new equipment with the various subsystems. Nevertheless, in a letter written to the Secretary of the Air Force on 1 May 1968, the Seventh Air Force Commander, Gen. William W. Momyer, expressed his optimism concerning the completion of the overall system:

“. . .Project COMBAT LIGHTNING is designed to interface a number of automated subsystems to give me a near real-time command and control capability... The complete system is programmed to be fully operational in approximately one year.”

There were important changes and additions in the proposed overall system after 1 November 1966. Apart from the inputs and relationships excluded from, such as IRON HORSE, YOGI BEAR, and the automated transmission of data to Tan Son Nhut AB, the position of COLLEGE EYE in the proposed automated system as a source of input data for the TACC/NS stations remained as illustrated throughout the period of the report.
My Participation in This Battle or Operation
From Month/Year
January / 1967
To Month/Year
December / 1968
Last Updated:
Mar 16, 2020
Personal Memories

People You Remember
MSgt George A Harmon
TSgt Sam D Coffee
TSgt Truitt G Hickman
TSgt Rex D Lierman
TSgt John C Newman
TSgt Kenneth G Stallings
TSgt Percel Stewart
TSgt Hershel Young
SSgt Clifford K Stiles
SSgt Allen H I Stallings
SSgt Eugene E Bobarge
SSgt Frank S Brown
SSgt Robert L Culpepper
SSgt Melvin E Burroughs
SSgt Clifford K Giles
SSgt Johnny W Greene, Jr.
SSgt Jerald E Hungerford
SSgt Joseph Smith
SSgt Clayton D Thomas
SSgt Harley M Waldo
A1C Kib D Eveland
A1C Val Dorn Venta

During a normal mission over the Gulf of China, although we were well out of range of any Vietcong missiles, we were witness to a missile fired at an F-4. Another F-4 companion pilot shot the missille down. Exciting to watch and no casualties to American personnel.

On May 29, 1968, after completing our Combat Lightning mission, the aircraft and crew were diverted to Okinawa to have the aircraft de-salted (no facility was available at Utapao, so Okinawa was it).

On the ground for a little over a full day and scheduled to relieve the Combat Lightning crew on duty at 8AM, we were to depart Okinawa at 4AM. While taxiing out for takeoff, the Pilot of our aircraft advised us we had to return to the hanger. After arriving back at the hangar, we heard an extremely LOUD noise, and the pilot advised us to look out the port side portals. We witnessed a takeoff of the highly classified SR-71 Blackbird (long-distance high-altitude aircraft). No one was supposed to know that Blackbird was even in the Pacific. The noise lasted for several minutes, and after the aircraft was well away from Okinawa, we were allowed to restart our departure routine. The midnight Combat Lightning crew was relieved on time.

My Photos From This Battle or Operation
No Available Photos

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