Tag Archives: PIKE

Rick Little: Best of Friends and Black Cats

Rick Little and I in Da Nang

Rick Little and I in Da Nang. No Smoking!

A quiet unsung “hero” and Vietnam survivor 1967-68, Rick Little was a U.S. Army helicopter Crew Chief with The Black Cats at Marble Mountain. We were the best of friends in high school and later between 1965 and 1972. Rick Little, Dixon Rupp, John Hunt, and I have the same tattoo (faded now), which we got one night at the PIKE in Long Beach in 1965. For those of you who remember the PIKE, the PIKE is gone but the tattoo parlor still stands! Visit C.W. Eldridge’s page, which provides photos and history.

Rick and I were both stationed at Marble Mountain on each side of the highway. Everyday he flew into danger, whether it was med-evacuation or engaging the enemy with gunfire. Rick earned my respect and surely the respect of all those who needed fire coverage from Rick’s helicopter, while crawling through the bush or going through rice patties. My mother said more prayers for Rick than anyone.