Veteran naval officers and soldiers shared their memories about the first victory of the Vietnam People’ Navy 50 years ago at a talk show broadcast on central Thanh Hoa province’s TV channel on August 5.

In the programme, Colonel Nguyen Xuan Bot, former captain of the ship coded 333 and commander of detachment 3, Battalion 135 recalled how his ship and three others faced the US destroyer USS Maddox.

“I ordered three of our patrol ships to approach the enemy ship from different directions to distract their attention so that one of us can get closer and launch torpedoes at it.”- he said.

The then secretary of Hau Loc district party committee, Le Xuan Na talked about the bravery of local people who sent their boats to the site of the battle to bring back wounded soldiers. More than 2,000 people were mobilized to repair a 6km road in order to timely transfer the wounded to hospital, and many others donated blood to save the soldiers.

Audiences of the talk show also had a chance to hear the wife of a naval officer talk about her family’s everyday life while her husband is on duty at sea. She added that the family is always a great source of encouragement and love for him to fulfill his duties.

In early 1964, the US decided to expand the war in Vietnam by dispatching destroyer USS Maddox deep inside the northern waters, in an attempt to save its “Special War” strategy.

Detachment 3 of the Navy’s Battalion 135 was ordered to secretly set up an ambush on Hon Ne island, Thanh Hoa province, waiting for the USS Maddox.

On August 2, 1964, when the USS Maddox was about 9 nautical miles from Hon Me, detachment 3 soldiers and their vessels started an offensive, braving bursts of bombs and firings to chase the destroyer out of the waters, shoot down a plane and damage others. -VNA