“Coming In Pretty Hot”: Shot Down On Lam Son 719, March 8, 1971

Robert Morris & Ron Azdell


Bob Morris and Ron Azdell flew together for the first time on March 8, 1971 in Laos. Bob grew up in Bayside, Queens, and after a year of college, he enlisted for the Warrant Officer program to become a pilot. Ron, from Mexico, Missouri, always wanted to fly. After earning his pilot’s license, two years at Wichita State University, and a semester at the University of Missouri, he enlisted in the Army to fly. After flight training, they deployed to Vietnam. Bob had been deployed almost a year by the time Ron joined the unit on March 1, 1971. On March 3, 1971, Bob, flying with another pilot, was shot down on LZ Lo Lo in Laos during Lam Son 719. On March 8, 1971, Ron was Bob’s co-pilot, and they were shot down coming in to an LZ in Laos. That mission ended Ron’s tour in Vietnam, but Bob remained in country to finish his deployment. In this interview, they talk about their paths to the Comancheros. They describe their childhoods, their experiences in Warrant Officer and Flight School, and flying in combat. Bob provides additional details about missions he flew before the one on March 8, 1971. At the end of the interview, they reflect on what their service means to them.


conflicts Vietnam War
topics Courage Teamwork Leadership Morale War in the Air Military Techniques
interviewer David Siry
date 07 December 2019


name Robert Morris & Ron Azdell
service Aviation
unit A Company Comancheros, 101st Aviation Battalion, 101st Airborne Division
specialty Lam Son 719