April 2024
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The Mariah Project Secret Documents Reveal Truth About Capital Kinh Do Theater Bombings

Have you ever wondered what “really” happened concerning the Capital Kinh Do Theater bombings? Or, the Pershing Field Sports Stadium bombing? Or, the U.S. Embassy bombing? Or, the Floating Restaurant bombing? Or, the many, many other bombings and terrorist acts that took place in Saigon and Viet-nam?

Once again Kathy’s continuing research has paid off concerning events that took place while many of us were in Saigon.

Her latest find on the Internet is “The Study of the Use of Terror by the Viet Cong” The Mariah Project (MAC/SOG).

This is a 41 page “Secret” report and study outlining Viet Cong acts of terror throughout Viet-nam during the period of 1957 though early 1966. The study was completed as part of the Phoenix Project.

It includes detailed information about the Pershing Field bombing, U.S. Embassy bombing and the Capital Kinh Do Theater bombings. As well as, many other events.

It even contains transcripts from captured Viet Cong documents and reports detailing the planning and execution of the Capital Kinh Do Theater bombings of 1963 and 1964.

This now declassified “Secret” document provides interesting insights from both the American and Viet Cong perspectives.

Thank you very much, Kathy, for locating and sharing this information with all us Saigon Kids. I’m sure everyone appreciates your efforts as much as I do – 🙂

Click Here to view The Mariah Project report and study.

Rock Onnnn … Saigon Kids!


PS: As you read through this document, it might prove helpful to others, if you could identify the page numbers in the report which relate to events and incidents Saigon Kids experienced. You can leave the information in the Comments section below. This way folks can zero in on the specific information relating to their experiences in Saigon – without having to read the entire report. Just a thought – 🙂

26 comments to The Mariah Project Secret Documents Reveal Truth About Capital Kinh Do Theater Bombings

  • Jay Oyler

    Pershing Field Bombing- The Pershing Field Bombing happened during a major Boy Scout trip to Nha Trang over the summer. This incident caused the death of a repairman who was on the roof of our house in the JDP Compound. When I returned from the trip, my mother told me about the bomb going off and the repairman coming down from the roof to fast on a rickety bamboo ladder. The ladder broke and he fell to his death. My Dad was away in Long Xuyen and she had to call for help and handle the situation herself while watching my 3 younger sisters. Not an everyday occurrence where we came from in Memphis, TN.

    The mention of that bombing brought back that memory to me very clearly.

    • Sarah (Black) Fry

      Jay, my two younger brothers may have been with you on that Boy Scout trip to Nha Trang. Would you happen to remember Peter and David Black? During their trip to Nha Trang, where our physician father served with a United States Overseas Mission medical team, included some kind of Viet Cong-related attack.

      Peter now lives in Colorado and David in Nevada.
      Our older brother, Tom, lives in Michigan; he was president of the last senior class to graduate from the American Community School in Saigon (1964).

      • Jim Cooper

        Sarah – I was a one of Pete’s pals and I was on the campout in Nha Trang with him in July 1964. On the last night, the 24th, just after we came back from watching a movie, there was an ambush action between Montagnard auxiliaries and Viet Cong up in the foothills a couple of miles from camp. We could hear the gunfire and see the flares and explosions very clearly, and we were all rushed into the chow hall and spent the next hour or so sheltering under tables.

  • Jay Oyler

    PS. The year was 1964.

  • Kenneth R. Yeager

    I was in the US at the time of the bombing, but when I returned to Saigon, my mother gave me the low down as she knew it. My dad was a big ball fan and was usually at the field when games were being played. If I recall it correctly, five bombs were planted under the stands, one of which was right under where my dad usually sat (middle row of stand, near home plate). Seeing some friends of his that evening, he moved to the far end of the bleachers…when the bombs went off, one of them was right where he normally would have been sitting.

    At the time, dad owned a black and while 1959 Chevy station wagon that he used to shuttle wounded to the hospital. He recalled that none of the Vietnames kids that were usually about during games were around that evening, a sure sign of trouble that unfortunately, no one recognized at the time.

    NOTE – All of the above was passed to me, so my facts may not be 100% correct.


  • Hello Saigon Kids…

    The U.S. Embassy bombing in Saigon will always be a memory for me, as I was working in the building at the time of the blast. (I returned to Saigon following my freshman year at the Univ. of Arizona, and accepted a one-year contract position at the embassy, 1964-65).

    I have written up a full account of the experience, and I have the complete photo packet that USIA produced for the media.

    Just contact me if you want more info.

    All the best,

    David Henry

    • Admin

      Hello David – Good to see you stopping by for a visit. Sounds like an interesting write up and photo packet. I’ll email you about it in the next few days.

      I hope all is good with you and yours.


    • Kenneth R. Yeager

      David, I want more info. Where the hell are you? Please give me your email. contact me at krygwy [@] yahoo.com. Ken

  • Suzanne Jahns

    David….My father was in Saigon and had just come out of the Embassy about one minute prior to a bombing. His picture ended up in a Life Magazine (double page) picture. He said there was a bomb placed in the elevator shaft which blew up and then sucked in all the windows causing massive casualties. This does not sound like the same bombing that I am finding on these sites. Do you know anything about this elevator shaft bombing. I am trying to get a date and then locate the Life Magazine that has the information in it. Any info you can give would be appreciated.

  • Suzanne Jahns

    By the way….I cannot get into the Mariah Project report. It seems to be blocked. Would love to peruse it though.

  • Curt Shupe

    Thanks so much for publishing the Mariah Project report. My father was in the theatre at the time of the bombing, and was wounded by shrapnel. The description of the event was detailed and fascinating. My father never speaks much about it, but I noted no differences between the official report and any of his recollections. He received two Purple Hearts during his 13-month hardship (no family) tour of Vietnam, spent mostly in Saigon. I recall being told of the bombing (I was 8, in Los Angeles) and having a regional newspaper interview us for our reaction to having our 2nd lt. father blown-up during a Sunday movie in Saigon. It was a wrenching experience. He’s still going here in California today at 83.
    I’m more of a Teheran Kid, as he was stationed there in 1967 prior to the Revolution in Iran, again in an advisory role. We saw the Shah’s coronation, among other things. We had an American school too, but I’m not aware of any online group or association from those days.
    Good luck to you and Happy New Year!

  • Frank

    Curt, I went to A.D.S. Tehran from 1954 (when it opened, a year after the C.I.A. inspired revolution) until 1959. It was the longest place I ever lived until I retired from the military and moved to Arizona in 1991. Back then there were more camels then trucks. Frank

  • Donald R. Koelper

    The Mariah Project document recounting the Kinh Do bombing has obviously been declassified for quite some time. It’s been sitting in Hamilton Library at the University of Hawaii since at least the mid-1980s, when I first read it.

    For the record, MAJ Donald E. Koelper, USMC (Dec.) was my father.

    • Hello Donald and welcome to our Saigon Kids blog site.

      Yes, you are correct regarding the declassification of the document. It states on the first page of the document it was to be declassified on May 1, 1978. This particular copy of the document appears to be a Certified True Copy made of the original document before the declassification date, which would explain why it is not marked Declassified.


  • B. Patterson

    I was attached to 5th SFG HQ in Nha Trang, 8/1963-8/64. We were alerted the C.K.D. Theatre bombing might be precursor of country-wide by the Charlies. Am writing novel (saga) occurring in SE Asia, 1953-1967 and I was stuck at 2-16-64…the Kinh Do. I read your page, 5×5; the info on your page broke me loose. Many thanks for a super spot.

    [Glad you found our site helpful. Let us know when your book is finished so we can add it to our on-site book store – Bob]

  • Deborah O. Melvin

    So happy to have the question I asked here answered within a few months – thank you!
    I was at the Kinh Do Theater for the earlier (Sept. 19, 1963) bombing and had remembered everything except the date. It was the remake of “The Thief of Bagdhad” with Steve Reeves (there was a blue rose in the story, memorable throughout) and I sat apart from my parents George and Virginia Melvin as I liked to be in the back and they preferred the front.
    I left the theater alone and was with a kind man in a neighboring apartment after the chaos, and remember looking at his microscope for some long while, obviously he was distracting me from what had happened. My mother was frantic until I was found, and we left Saigon (she and I) just a month and a half later, to my great sadness.
    Mahalo to all – Deborah (“Debby Melvin” 4th grade ACS)

  • Joan Mashburn

    Lady and the Tramp was playing in the Kinh Do Theater when I was there and the Theater was bombed. The bomb hit the back of the theater killing Vietnamese who lived behind the building. I too was in 4th grade ACS, cannot remember the date, but September 1963 sounds correct. We all ran out and down the street to the Jackson’s house where our parents were having a party.
    Thank you for research.


  • George Jones

    In the past few months my father and I have finally found significant details concerning the 16 February of the Kinh-Do theater. He was injured during the bombing and was awarded the Purple Heart. Growing up an Army Brat was not always easy. Learning 50 years after the fact of how close I came to losing my Dad is enlightening.

  • Randall Underwood

    Thats some interesting facts about the bombings……in Saigon. I was a medic , worked in the operating room at 3rd Field Hospital in 1972……I can recall going to the sites where the Monks burned themselves……and playing football on the grassy fields of Ton Son Nhut Air field…..I remember reading about the floating restaurant being bombed, while I was in high school.
    I enjoy getting the Saigon Kids news letter……yawl keep smilin..

    Randall Underwood
    former Army Medic

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