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is honored on Panel 22E, Line 38 of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

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  • You are not forgotten

    Posted on 10/25/18 - by jerry sandwisch wood cty.ohio vietnam vet 1969-70 army 173rd abn bde
    The war may be forgotten but the warrior will always be remembered. All gave Some-Some Gave All. Rest in peace Sky Soldier.
  • Final Mission of SP4 Charles O. Deedrick Jr.

    Posted on 9/15/18 - by
    On June 19-20, 1967, Sky Soldiers of the 2/503rd were lifted by helicopter into the hills near Dak To in Kontum Province, RVN, “to make their presence known” and conduct search and destroy operations. During the two-day operation, no contact was made with enemy forces. A Company received a radio call instructing them to return to Dak To proper (basecamp) the next day to rest up and recover. About a half an hour after daybreak on the 22nd, 1st Squad of 2nd Platoon took the point and headed down the ridge. At 6:58 AM, the seven-man squad had travelled about 200 meters when the point man fired his M16 and the squad leader behind him a M79 grenade launcher at some North Vietnamese Army soldiers they had seen. After 20 minutes of sniper fire and rounds coming in from the left flank, the squad pulled back up the hill and rejoined the rest of 2nd platoon. The A Company commander called in artillery to help support their movement, and sent a medic to the sound of battle. First Platoon sent a four-man detail with additional ammunition and a machine gun to the besieged 2nd Platoon. As they set up their two M60 machine guns, a NVA battalion-sized force suddenly appeared with its all its firepower. At 7:05 AM, 3rd Platoon linked up with 2nd Platoon, and a V-shaped perimeter was established with 2nd Platoon on the west and 3rd Platoon on the east. The NVA attacked in waves, screaming and firing their weapons, but each time were held off from completely overrunning 2nd and 3rd Platoons. By 10:00 AM, the two platoons were down to 15 effective fighters, with both platoon leaders killed, and the platoon sergeants wounded, several times. At 10:34 AM, all radio communication was lost. The 2nd Platoon sergeant ordered the men to grab the wounded, weapons, and ammo, and get back up the hill to the Command Post (CP). The A Company commander moved his CP further back up the hill to a small knoll and set up a defensive perimeter in a small clearing. Two more enemy assaults were attempted on the CP at 12:20 PM and again at 12:45 PM. When relief finally came, Company A was extracted from the area to the Brigade basecamp at 6:50 PM. When they got back, a formation for a head count was conducted. Normally 137 Sky Soldiers would be present. There were only 33 men standing in formation. The next day, as American troops policed the battlefield, a horrendous discovery was made. Over half the KIA's (43 personnel) had suffered head wounds inflicted at close range, evidence that the NVA had executed the wounded during the night. The Sky Soldiers suffered 77 losses on June 22, 1967. They included PFC Terry L. Allen, PFC Erling A. Anderson, PFC James Arnold, PFC William J. Boehm, 1LT Ervin L. Burns, PFC Albert Butler Jr., PFC Darrell W. Butts, PFC Carlin M. Campbell Jr., SP4 Ronald C. Clark, PFC Thorne M. Clark III, SP4 Jack L. Cripe, SP4 Lloyd D. DeLoach, PFC Lester M. DeRiso, SP4 Charles O. Deedrick Jr., SP4 Thomas A. Deschenes, PFC Thomas B. Duffy Jr., PFC Timothy J. Egan, SGT James R. Emmert, SP4 Russell W. Engle, SP4 Bobby L. Finney, SP4 Burrell Gibson, PFC Kenneth L. Greene, PFC David J. Heller, SGT Alvin G. Hill, PFC Doyle Holcomb, 1LT Richard E. Hood Jr., SP4 Vins R. Hooper, SGT David E. Johnson, SGT Harry J. Johnson, SP4 Richard B. Johnston, Richard J. Johnston, 1LT 1LT Donald R. Judd, SGT Stephen A. Kelly, SSGT Kenneth K. Lima, PFC Frederick H. Liminga, PSGT Robert R. Litwin, SP4 Jimmy C. Lowry, SP4 Gary A. Luttrell, PFC Walter C. Mayer, 1LT Ellis A. McBride Jr., PFC William S. McBroom, SP4 Frank McCray Jr., SP4 John H. McEachin Jr., PFC Stephen A. Mika, PFC Donald M. Munden, PFC William A. Munn, PFC Timothy J. Murphy, PFC Daniel L. Negro, PFC Jerry L. Noe, SP4 Michael D. O’Connor, PFC George Patton, SGT John P. Patton, PFC George A. Poor Jr., SP4 Leonard B. Poore, SP4 Robert L. Preddy, PFC Floyd E. Quarles, SP4 Ralph J. Rizzi, PFC Trine Romero Jr., PFC Hector M. Saenz, PFC James W. Sanford, PFC Warren H. Schrobilgen Jr., 2LT Jeffrey R. Sexton, SP4 John Sharber Jr., SP4 Lloyd E. Smith, PFC Charles H. Snow, PFC Johnson A. Steidler, SGT David A. Stephens, PFC David R. Stephenson, PFC Robert L. Stevens Jr., PFC Fa’asaviliga V. Tafao, SP4 Larry B. Turner, PFC Daniel V. Valdez, PFC Charlie L. Walker, SP4 Willie C. Warren, PFC Michael J. Waterman, PFC Edwin J. Williams, and SP4 Alexander C. Zsigo Jr. [Taken from,, and other web-based sources]
  • Tribute to Sky Soldier

    Posted on 6/19/18 - by Mike Switzer
    On behalf of those who served with you in the 173rd Airborne Brigade (Separate) and all who followed, we offer our respect and remembrance of your ultimate sacrifice. May you never be forgotten and your family and friends take comfort in your valor in serving.

    Posted on 5/20/18 - by Bob Ahles, Vietnam Vet, St. Cloud, Minnesota
    22 June 1967
    At the beginning of June 1967 Second Battalion, 503rd Infantry, 173rd Airborne Brigade (the "Sky Soldiers"), moved to Dak-To in Kontum Province, South Vietnam. At the time, intelligence information indicated elements of the 24th North Vietnamese Army (NVA) Regiment, 304th VC Battalion, 200th VC Artillery Battalion, and H-15 Local Force Battalion were operating in the area. There were solid indications that the B-3 front was moving the bulk of its regiments from Laos and Cambodia into the Central Highlands under the control of the 1st NVA Division. The enemy had the capability to attack in up to regimental strength, to defend and reinforce with the above mentioned elements, and to withdraw at the time and place of his choosing. The enemy forces were well trained and seasoned soldiers.
    In mid-June the Battalion was directed to conduct search and destroy operations south of the Dak-To Special Forces Camp. The concept was to deploy A Company on 18 June and C Company on 20 June, with B Company held in reserve as a reaction force.
    No contact was made with the enemy between 18 and 21 June, and late in the afternoon of the 21st A Company was directed to return overland to the 2/503rd Base Camp at Dak-To. A and C Companies shared a night laager on the night of the 21st. As dawn approached the two companies prepared to move out in different directions, A Company toward the base camp about 2000 meters distant with C Company continuing the search and destroy mission.
    The night laager was located atop a ridgeline covered with triple-canopy jungle. A Company had only one practical route of march, down a steep-sided finger pointing north toward the relatively flat ground around Dak-To. C Company left the laager first, moving away from Dak-To. A Company began its move at about 0620 with 2nd Platoon in the lead, then 3rd Platoon, with the Command Group, Weapons Platoon, and 1st Platoon bringing up the rear. At 0658, 2nd Platoon's point squad ran into several NVA troops, initiating an intense firefight.
    As the engagement developed, 3rd Platoon linked with 2nd Platoon and established an east-west defensive line across the finger facing northwards. By this time additional NVA forces had joined the fight, taking up positions south of the 2nd and 3rd Platoon position - between the two segments of A Company. When 1st Platoon was directed to reinforce the two advanced platoons they had first to fight their way through the developing NVA positions.
    Although air and artillery support had been called in shortly after the intial contact, its usefulness was reduced by two factors: the assaulting NVA forces were in close contact and intermingled with the A Company elements, and the triple-canopy jungle prevented the fixed-wing and helicopter crews from actually seeing the ground troops. The best that could be done was to direct the supporting arms on the surrounding areas in an effort to isolate the battlefield from other NVA forces not yet engaged.
    By 1000 the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Platoons were surrounded and under attack by much larger NVA forces, with the Company Command Group and Weapons Platoon situated further up the ridge finger and under assault from their north. The advance element was down to fifteen effective men when radio contact was lost at about 1100. Shortly afterwards, the 2nd platoon's senior surviving Sergeant was able to lead some of his men into the Weapons Platoon defensive perimeter, making a total of thirty effective and thirty-five wounded soldiers within the perimeter. At 1140 the Company Commander decided to move back up the ridge to a more defensible position, a move completed by about noon. The situation at noontime was as follows:
    • Contact had been lost with the bulk of A Company's three rifle platoons.
    • A Company's Command Group, Weapons Platoon, and effective and wounded soldiers from the rifle platoons had formed a defensive perimeter higher up the finger.
    • The Battalion reserve, B Company, had been inserted into a single-ship landing zone several hundred meters away and was beginning to move out toward A Company's position.
    • C Company was conducting an assault through NVA troops in an effort to reach A Company
    B Company was engaged by 1230. The remaining men of A Company still were under heavy assault and were not relieved by C Company until about 1430. A landing area was cleared and the remnants of A Company extracted. As the afternoon continued, C Company was able to secure and search the area around A Company's final defensive position but night fell before they could extend the search into the areas where A Company's rifle platoons had fought. B and C Company set up separate defensive positions for the night. As the 2/503 soldiers waited through the night, anticipating an all-out attack, the men heard shots punctuated by screams as the NVA executed the American wounded. At dawn, B and C Companies searched the battlefield, finding only one survivor from A Company's rifle platoons; he had survived both his initial wounds and a close-range head shot. Fortythree American soldiers had died from head wounds inflicted at close range.
    Further clearing operations on the 23rd and 24th confirmed heavy losses among the NVA troops and identified the NVA unit involved as the 6th NVA Battalion, 24th NVA Regiment.
    The final results of the engagement were as follows:
    • U. S. Losses: 76 killed and 23 wounded (74 dead from A Company).
    • ARVN losses: 1 ARVN interpreter/advisor and 2 CIDG killed.
    • Enemy Losses: 106 NVA KIA (Body count), 407 NVA KIA (possible), 3 POWs.
    The Sky Soldiers who died in the engagement were
    • A Company, 2/503rd Infantry
    o PFC Terry L. Allen, Kansas City, MO
    o PFC James Arnold, Greenville, SC
    o PFC William J. Boehm, Silver Spring, MD
    o 1LT Ervin L. Burns, Providence, KY
    o PFC Albert Butler, Tyler, TX
    o PFC Darrell W. Butts, Wichita, KS
    o PFC Carlin M. Campbell, San Diego, CA
    o SP4 Ronald C. Clark, Gainesville, GA
    o PFC Thorne M. Clark, Lompoc, CA
    o SP4 Jack L. Cripe, Onondaga, MI
    o SP4 Lloyd D. De Loach, Dallas, TX
    o PFC Lester M. De Riso, Warren, RI
    o SP4 Charles O. Deedrick, Winona, MN
    o SP4 Thomas A. Deschenes, Fitchburg, MA
    o PFC Thomas B. Duffy, Glen Ellyn, IL
    o PFC Timothy J. Egan, Chicago, IL
    o SGT James R. Emmert, Huntington, WV
    o SP4 Russel W. Engle, Madison, NJ
    o SP4 Bobby L. Finney, Boston, MA
    o SP4 Burrell Gibson, Dayton, OH
    o PFC Kenneth L. Greene, Somerville, MA
    o PFC David J. Heller, South Boone, CO
    o SGT Alvin G. Hill, Bartow, FL
    o PFC Doyle Holcomb, Johnson City, TN
    o 1LT Richard E. Hood, Winter Haven, FL
    o SP4 Vins R. Hooper, Somerset, NJ
    o SGT David E. Johnson, Natchez, MS
    o SGT Harry J. Johnson, Tarrant City, AL
    o SP4 Richard B. Johnston, Candia, NH
    o SP4 Richard J. Johnston, Sacramento, CA
    o 1LT Donald R. Judd, Alexander, NY
    o SGT Stephen A. Kelly, Atlanta, GA
    o SSG Kenneth K. Lima, Honolulu, HI
    o PFC Frederick H. Liminga, Pontiac, MI
    o PSGT Robert R. Litwin, Willimansett, MA (Dist Svc Cross)
    o SP4 Jimmy C. Lowry, Nocatee, FL
    o SP4 Gary A. Luttrell, Sterling, IL
    o PFC Walter C. Mayer, San Antonio, TX
    o PFC William S. McBroom, Russell, NY
    o SP4 Frank McCray, Miami, FL
    o SP4 John McEachin, New York, NY
    o PFC Stephen A. Mika, Willowick, OH
    o PFC Donald M. Munden, Quail Valley, CA
    o PFC William A. Munn, Detroit, MI
    o PFC Timothy J. Murphy, Avenel, NJ
    o PFC Daniel L. Negro, Wakefield, MI
    o PFC Jerry L. Noe, Knoxville, TN
    o SP4 Michael D. O'Connor, Mount Pleasant, IA
    o PFC George Patton, New York, NY
    o SGT John P. Patton, Oakland, CA
    o PFC George A. Poor, Hillsdale, NJ
    o SP4 Leonard B. Poore, Beaumont, TX
    o SP4 Robert L. Preddy, San Bernardino, CA
    o PFC Floyd E. Quarles, New York, NY
    o SP4 Ralph J. Rizzi, Canandaigua, NY
    o PFC Trine Romero, Roswell, NM
    o PFC Hector M. Saenz, Roswell, NM
    o PFC James W. Sanford, Orangeburg, SC
    o PFC Warren H. Schrobilgen, Pacoima, CA
    o 2LT Jeffrey R. Sexton, Maricopa, AZ
    o SP4 John Sharber, Jackson, MS
    o SP4 Lloyd E. Smith, Portales, NM
    o PFC Charles H. Snow, Medford, OR
    o PFC Johnson A. Steidler, Gibbstown, NJ
    o SGT David A. Stephens, Largo, FL
    o PFC David R. Stephenson, Sand Springs, OK
    o PFC Robert L. Stevens, Kalamazoo, MI
    o PFC Fa'asaviliga V. Tafao, San Diego, CA
    o SP4 Larry B. Turner, Oakboro, NC
    o PFC Daniel V. Valdez, Antioch, CA
    o PFC Charlie L. Walker, Munford, AL
    o PFC Michael J. Waterman, Westminster, MA
    o PFC Edwin J. Williams, Detroit, MI
    o SP4 Alexander C. Zsigo, Durand, MI

    • B Company, 2/503rd Infantry
    o 1LT Ellis A. McBride, Lithia, FL

    • C Company, 2/503rd Infantry
    o PVT Jimmy L. Cook, Phoenix, AZ
  • Thank You

    Posted on 4/22/18 - by Lucy Micik
    Dear Sp4 Charles Deedrick,
    Thank you for your service as an Infantryman. Your 73rd birthday just passed. Happy birthday. It is so important for us all to acknowledge the sacrifices of those like you who answered our nation's call. Please watch over America, it stills needs your strength, courage and faithfulness. Rest in peace with the angels.
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The Wall of Faces

Brought to you by the organization that built The Wall, the Vietnam Veterans Virtual Memorial Wall is dedicated to honoring, remembering and sharing the legacies of all those who died in the Vietnam War. Here you can go beyond the names on The Wall to see the faces, share the stories and read the remembrances posted by friends, neighbors, classmates and family members.