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River Rats
Bottle Opener 
Challenge Coin


Using the standard updated River Rat coin, we thought it would be a good idea to help promote the fun and camaraderie that  this group has when gathering together at TC's and other events.                                       

So start having some fun!

River Rats Bottle Opener Challenge Coin


The original challenge coin was designed by  J.D. Franks and Dave Gray with input from other Langley pack members in 1985. Their outstanding coin design symbolizes key elements of that era and paid homage to the beginnings of the River Rats in Vietnam. The Billy Sparks Kentuckiana Pack was tasked with making an updated version of the River Rats Challenge Coin in honor of our 50th anniversary. Reflecting the broader membership of the River Rats today, our goal in updating the challenge coin was to incorporate elements from all services, signifying the solidarity of our mission, history, and traditions of the River Rats.

About the Bottle Opener Challenge Coin

The idea behind having a River Rat bottle opener challenge coin is to promote the fun and camaraderie that the River Rats have at the local TC's and reunions. The updated bottle opener style coin is two-inches round, with in a matted silver finish and smooth edge.

Front of the Coin

Displayed on the front of the coin is the Red River Valley Fighter Pilot Association shield and banner, encircled by the motto:


Back of the Coin

The back of the coin features the following symbolic elements:

  • The lower area has an opening with tab to be used to open your favorite beverage - you’re already having fun!

  • A nickel at the top left position, representing the “Throw a Nickel on the Grass” tradition for those who have gone before us

  • The POW/MIA ribbon in the top center, with the yellow outline

  • The phrase “Check 6” sits at the upper right

  • The dots along the top arc represent the tap code used by the POWs to communicate with each other, spelling out one of the standard yet powerful sign-offs: GBU (God Bless You)

  • The bottom arc is the Shakespeare saying which binds us altogether: “WE FEW, WE HAPPY FEW, WE BAND OF BROTHERS"


River Rats Challenge Coin Rules

In keeping with the tradition of the original River Rat challenge coin, the rule is that “If coined, you have 5 seconds to produce your coin or you buy a round of drinks. If you manage to produce your coin within 5 seconds, then the person initiating the challenge would buy the round”.

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