74th RAC Jack Walters Photography
Being trained for maintenance on Single
Fixed wing aircraft, Jack was transferred to the 221ST AVN Co.(O-1) in
Vinh Long for
a few months before finally being transferred to the 74TH Recon
Airplane Co. O-1(RAC) in Phu Loi, a little North of Saigon (now known
as HO CHI MINH City) . After a very short time he was transferred
to the 2ND Platoon of the 74TH located in the small hamlet of Duc Hoa
-- ten miles due west
of Saigon, and very close to the Cambodia border. Most of
the next two years were spent there, and
many of his photos came from, and around there as well. Jack was
finally working on the Cessna 305A,D,E,F or as we knew it, the O-1D
aircraft as seen in the photo above. Jack's
name (Lori) was stenciled on the nose cowling of his aircraft for good
Jack quickly acquired the desire to capture the somewhat strange images he encountered on a day-to-day basis.
With Cameras and other photographic equipment relatively inexpensive (no duties to pay), Jack assembled the almost obligatory pile of Cameras, tripods, light meters, gadgets, gizmos, and, of course, "a Mountain of film."
Serving as a Door Gunner, Mechanic, Crew Chief, and Recon for both Fixed and Rotary winged aircraft, Most of the photographs in this series were taken during and around actual recon operations and combat missions.
Photographing in mostly off limits territory, he assembled literally thousands of candid images during his 27 month stay in Southeast Asia. A few have been published in his eBook - "Through a Soldiers Eyes" -Geography and Humanity of a Nation at War. Eight of his photographs are in the collection of the National Vietnam Veterans Art museum in Chicago, Il.
As each photograph was composed, an attempt was made to accurately depict the extremely high temperatures of the area, the gentle people whose country was torn by war, the intensity of combat, and even the strange smells and sounds of this otherwise beautiful country in Southeast Asia.