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Major Jim Harding, the Commanding Officer (CO) of the 1st SOS (Hobos) was an old hand to aerial combat in the skies of Southeast Asia. Harding arrived in South Vietnam in 1963, on what was to become a two and half year tour assigned to fly O-1 “Bird Dog” to provide aerial observations to both American advisers and South Vietnamese troops. As the CO of the Hobos, Harding’s job was to protect the rescue force’s helicopters from enemy ground fire. Harding and his men were very good at their job.

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