The Wall of Faces

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is honored on Panel 38E, Line 44 of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Leave a Remembrance


  • Half a Decade

    Posted on 2/9/18 - by Mitch
    Fifty years ago today Tom, only your loved ones and those that served with you remember the sacrifice you made. God bless, I'll never forget.
  • 49 Years

    Posted on 2/9/17 - by Mitch
    Today, the 49 anniversary of the loss of my brother in arms. You were the best ... I'm sorry I could not help you. God Bless you, our country and your family.

  • Remembered

    Posted on 10/17/16 - by Lucy Conte Micik
  • God Bless Brother Tom

    Posted on 2/9/16 - by Mitch
    Brother Tom

    I talked with your sister a few months ago, she lives in the same state as I. She and her family hold you in their hearts and miss you. 48 years is a long time - Again I thank you for being my friend and comrade in arms, you were the best - so many in this country never stop and think of all those that fought and died for us. I only wish I could have helped you .....

    God Bless and keep you

  • Final Mission of PFC Thomas A. Backy

    Posted on 12/12/15 - by
    The following is a personal account by Victor DeMitchell of the firefight of February 9, 1968 in which C Company, 1/35th Infantry was engaged and lost several members of its unit: “I remember seeing a tree line ahead, and then all hell broke loose; incoming sniper fire and mortars. Many mortar rounds were falling, B-40 rockets were exploding and I was terrified. I was in a line with 6-8 others and remember looking over a berm and seeing 40-50 enemy soldiers running in full view in front of me. It's like they were asking to be shot--they were not ducking or anything. I also saw 2LT Jerry A Novakovich standing up and trying to direct 2nd platoon and, as he was giving orders, he was shot and killed. This is a very vivid memory. He was a brave man. I think the group I was in was on the left side (don't know which direction, north, east, south, or west) and was cut off from the rest of the company. Why I think this I don't know, but there were very few of us together. After about 10 minutes of firing, I was low on ammo and crawled out to try and find some. I remember finding a buddy, SP4 Mark S. Kaye from California, who was KIA. I retrieved some 16 rounds and a LAW (light anti-tank weapon) and crawled back. There was a drainage ditch in front of us and about 200 yards straight ahead was a small bridge running over this ditch. A few gooks were hiding there; it seemed to be a crossing point for them. A sergeant caught one of them with his M-14, sending him down. It's as if this happened yesterday, it's so clear. I remember gunships arriving and on my radio speaking to, I believe, someone from battalion in a chopper. From here on I remember little except a loud explosion. When I came to, a medic was bending over me putting dressings on. I now know that a mortar round exploded in the middle of us, killing PFC Salvador M. Banaga Jr., PFC Steven E. Clark, PFC Thomas A. Backy, and PFC Robert L. Sharpless. I remember my buddy SP4 Robert Fritsche (KIA on April 15, 1968 at Mile High) talking to me, telling me everything was gonna be OK. I was lying in a line with other wounded. No medevacs were available that day and I remember spending a cold night. Company B had joined us and it was the morning of the 10th that I was taken to the NSA Hospital in Da Nang. I write this in memory of Bob, Paul, Tom and Sal. You guys were the best. May God keep you in his arms till I get there and we'll listen to the Stones and have some beers. (Narrative by Victor DeMitchell) [Taken from]
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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.

All of these photos will be showcased in The Education Center at The Wall on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. To learn more about the effort to collect these photos and ensure their faces will never be forgotten, visit