The M79, commonly known as the Thumper is a single-shot, break action grenade launcher first adopted in 1960. The launcher was designed to give infantry squads greater firepower, and was intended to fire a grenade further than it could be thrown by hand, with more accuracy than older rifle grenades. The weapon thus intended as a sort of middle-ground between a hand grenade and a mortar. The weapon served through the Vietnam War, until the M203 was placed into service in 1969 and the M79 was gradually replaced, though it is still in use for some purposes it it has a longer range than the M-203. The M79 was replaced with the M203 as the M203 was an underbarrel launcher, allowing the grenadier to carry a rifle as well as the launcher, whereas the M79 operator could only carry a pistol and a combat knife as secondary weapons.

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