The Vietnam War in the 1960s and 1970s was characterised by the mobility provided by Iroquois UH-1H helicopters. They were used as commuter taxis to carry troops into and out of operations areas, to back up troops with supplies and ammunition, and to evacuate the wounded and ill, both friendly and enemy, in missions known as "Dustoffs". Often coming under fire themselves, they were equipped with M60 machineguns for self-defence.
Late in 1968 the first of a new breed Australian UH-1H went aloft. It was the helicopter gunship, a Frankenstein of scrounged and bartered bits and pieces, armed to the teeth with machine guns, rockets and miniguns. It was a Vietnam War phenomenon, a heavy-duty airborne weapons platform whose mission was to support ground troops. Its callsign was Bushranger.
This is the graphic story of the pilots and crews of Australia's fleet of Iroquois helicopters during the Vietnam War, the Dustoffs and the Bushrangers, their triumphs and losses, and the legacy of that experience that some still carry today.