View Full Version : Respectfully, requesting help on call signs and Marine lingo

03-20-18, 12:24 PM
First of all, greetings and thank you all for your very valued service!! I am a friend of the honorable USMC, and I am writing a book in which I feature the fictitious U.S. MARINE LIGHT HELICOPTER ATTACK SQUADRON HMLA-242; CODE NAME: DRAGONFIRE. I would like to know if you all can help me with the call signs, the lingo and the tone of conversation. This small segment is taken from the book I am writing, but I am having trouble coming up with correct lingo and call signs. The following is during wartime, it is the commencement of a fictitious land action after your comrades from the Air Force and Navy have completed an air campaign into Iran:


“Puzzle Palace, this is Gunslinger leader, come in, over.”
“We copy, Gunslinger leader. Go ahead, over.”
“Be advised, I have visual contact with a formation of approximately forty, repeat Four-Zero mobile artillery units and three dozen or so enemy tanks. Please confirm the OPFOR, over.”
“Gunslinger leader, we copy forty enemy M.A.s and approximately three dozen tanks, over.”
“That’s a good copy, over.”
[10 second radio silence]
“Gunslinger leader, please be advised, we have confirmation. I repeat, that is the OPFOR. What’s your position, over?”
“Twenty-five klicks Southwest of M-Town (Mohammabad), just as you indicated. Request weapons free, over.”
“Stand by, gunslinger leader.”
“Roger that, Puzzle Palace.”
[30 second radio silence]
“Gunslinger leader, your request is confirmed by TOC, you are weapons free, repeat, you are cleared to engage them; take them all out, over.”
“Roger that, Puzzle Palace, over. Dash Two, come in, over.”
“Go ahead, Dash One this is Dash Two, over.”
“Just as we rehearsed, take your designated half of the squadron and flank the enemy’s left; I’ll flank them from the right. After I radio in the fire mission for extra support, we'll take out whatever remains of the enemy. I want radio silence until then, do you copy that, over.
“Loud and clear, Dash one. About time we got our feet wet, sir.”
“Easy now, Oli. Remember everything that we have gone over. This is the real thing. Keep your head on your shoulders and keep it cool, oorah?"
“Oorah, dash one," said an overzealous 1st Lieutenant, Olivia Jenkins....

Any input or information will be immensely appreciated, on top of your service, of course. Oorah!

03-20-18, 01:42 PM
Sounds exciting.

03-20-18, 04:33 PM
Russ, you think LuLu is exciting.......just saying32483

03-21-18, 05:56 AM
^ ALL that meat & no Potatoes -

they really know how to grow um in TEXAS .....

​(just sayin')

Zulu 36
03-21-18, 06:20 AM
Well, were does one start. First, Puzzle Palace would never be used as a call sign as it is a derogatory term for a headquarters. No commanding officer/general would go along with that one.

Second, the unit "Code Name: Dragonfire." The term "code name" would not be used. It might be a call sign. My unit in Vietnam was VMA-211 "The Wake Island Avengers." The pilots never used "Avengers" as a call sign. They used whatever was assigned to them in the frago. If you don't know what a frago is, you need to study some more, especially if you're going to write about an aviation unit in combat.

Ground call signs are assigned from on-high too. Although intra-unit radios may be a bit more informal.

My unit in the Air Guard (a security police unit) had the call sign "Zulu" that we used on tactical radios in training. Hence my site handle, Zulu 3-6. I was in the 3rd Flight (platoon) and I was "the six", or commander for the flight. We didn't have very many officers so senior NCOs filled the slots. In Desert Storm, we used different call signs as assigned on-high, also we didn't work as a separate unit. We were amalgamated with another Air Guard unit and an active duty unit.

I suggest you get on YouTube and listen to the vids of helo pilots actually talking among themselves and with the ground.

03-21-18, 07:21 AM
Our call signs changed often. However, our number signs stayed the same. For instance...using Dallas 33 meant....Dallas was call sign for Kilo Company, 33 was 3rd. Plt. , 3rd. Squad.

BR Williams
03-21-18, 07:59 AM
You should be getting all that info. off line.

03-21-18, 09:09 AM
For a long time, we were simply "Luminous ExRay."

03-21-18, 10:19 AM
Zulu 36
Wow, Vietnam huh? Thank you for your service, Sir. Secondly, no disrespect to the Corps or any of its members for my writing. Yes, “codename” is wrong, I will make a change. Next, I do know what “frago” is fortunately. The scenerio which I am depicting here is a squadron of Vipers and two accompanying FAC Hueys searching for the remnants of a fictitious Iranian artillery division. A prior aur campaign has decimated approx 75 percent of an Iranian division (fictitious 92nd Armored Division) The squadron has located the OPFOR and wants to know whether they are cleared to engage it as the Rogue armored column is making its way to its preset location to bomb an American forward base on the other side of a mountanous terrain (approx 20 miles out). I want to know whether the chatter between the squadron leader (gunslinger leader) is correct, and whether the communications between his second in command and gunslinger leader is proper call signs (dash 1 being gunslinger leader and dash 2 1st Lt Olivia Jenkins). How would a communication exchange between these two sirmen sound like? Thank you in advance, and again very thankfu for your honored service!

03-21-18, 10:36 AM
Forgive my writing, I was trying to edit my reply, but I did not realize that there was a 5 minute limit to do so. So, I apologize for the bad text.

03-21-18, 04:20 PM
For a long time, we were simply "Luminous ExRay."

Russ, I thought your call sign was #1.......

03-21-18, 09:48 PM
This is luminous exray #1

03-22-18, 04:12 AM
"OP-sec" ?

05-13-18, 04:05 PM

Gotta be a call sign
in there some place ???

05-13-18, 04:28 PM
Ed.....you need to upgrade your meds, Brother......I think you're getting immune to the ones your taking......