I was based in Singapore with 41 Squadron at RAF Tengah from 1973 to 1975. During this time I was part-time aircrew on Bristol Freighters (B170). We flew sorties into South Vietnam delivering mail and other correspondence into Saigon, and medical supplies to the hospital in Qui Nhon.

In 1973 I was part of a RNZAF team assigned to paint the hospital in Qui Nhon using a new type of water based paint supplied by the Dulux Paint Company. The end result was excellent and the hospital became the brightest place in Qui Nhon. Despite the basic conditions at the hospital, everyone coped well and were generally very happy. The patients, mainly war victims were quite co-operative while the painting was being done and everyone in the hospital wards just loved posing for their photos to be taken.

The other highlight was that we were all treated to helicopter rides towards the DMZ and out to the islands off the coast off Qui Nhon where we were surrounded by the local children. I really enjoyed doing the sorties into Qui Nhon and Saigon and had the opportunity to do some shopping and bargaining while on overnight stays. My experience was very rewarding indeed.

Additional images

Painting Qui Nhon Hospital Painting Qui Nhon Hospital Painting Qui Nhon Hospital Painting Qui Nhon Hospital Painting Qui Nhon Hospital

Reference: 

Peter Crotty

How to cite this page: 'Painting the Qui Nhon Hospital - Peter Crotty', URL: http://www.vietnamwar.govt.nz/memory/painting-qui-nhon-hospital, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 12-Aug-2013

Comments

I remember the 41 Sqn Painting team very well as I was the Admin Officer for the NZ Surgical Team which was based at the Province Hospital Qui Nhon.

The painting team did very well. We managed to accommodate and feed them with the odd trip around the local Vietnamese countryside. We even managed a visit to Song Cau which was a beautiful beach location about a hour out from Qui Nhon where the 41 Sqn boys enjoyed a refreshing swim.

The Vietnamese Hospital Staff were eternally grateful for the paint job and to the guys who gave up their PA leave to come to Qui Nhon and cover the hospital (and themselves) with NZ made acrylic paint the like of which the Vietnamese had never seen before!

Ken Treanor
AO NZ Surgical Team Qui Nhon 1972-73.