The Wall of Faces

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DONNIE STEPHEN BARTLETT


is honored on Panel 13W, Line 109 of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Leave a Remembrance

REMEMBRANCES

  • Remembered

    Posted on 12/8/16 - by Lucy Conte Micik bennysgift@gmail.com
    DEAR PFC BARTLETT,
    THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE AS AN INFANTRY DIRECT FIRE CREWMAN WITH THE 1ST CAVALRY. THIS WAS THE UNIT OF A FRIEND'S BROTHER. SAY HI TO MIKE. ARTILLERYMEN WILL HAVE A PLACE IN MY HEART ALWAYS. WATCH OVER THE U.S.A., IT STILL NEEDS YOUR COURAGE. ADVENT IS HERE, AND CHRISTMAS IS APPROACHING. WE ARE THANKFUL FOR YOU. THE NEW YEAR IS JUST AROUND THE CORNER, WHICH MAKES IT FAR TOO LONG FOR YOU TO HAVE BEEN GONE. GOD BLESS YOU. MAY THE SAINTS AND ANGELS BE AT YOUR SIDE. REST IN PEACE.
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  • Good Memory of serving together in Vinh Long, Vietnam

    Posted on 4/26/15 - by John Hallimore
    Donnie had a lot of charisma, smiling and joking all of the time. I will never forget Donnie and the day that he died with 3 other members of our platoon. They hit a mine on the side of the rode in their jeep which had a 102 recoilless gun mounted on it. Only the driver was not killed (thrown way out of the jeep). It was a sad day. We lost a very important member of our team and the feeling is still with me 45 years latter. I was in another vehicle in the convoy.
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  • Remembering An American Hero

    Posted on 3/11/14 - by Curt Carter ccarter02@earthlink.net
    Dear PFC Donnie Stephen Bartlett, sir

    As an American, I would like to thank you for your service and for your sacrifice made on behalf of our wonderful country. The youth of today could gain much by learning of heroes such as yourself, men and women whose courage and heart can never be questioned.

    With respect, Sir

    Curt Carter
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  • Scripps News Service Article

    Posted on 8/13/09 - by Arnold M. Huskins rebeleye@aol.com
    Teacher's mission: ID soldier with name missing on Wall
    Submitted by SHNS on Mon, 08/10/2009 - 16:36
    By BARTHOLOMEW SULLIVAN Scripps Howard News Service
    Washington

    Ken Carter can't have imagined how many lives he'd touch by satisfying his curiosity about a piece of black granite and its connection to a soldier killed 39 years ago.
    The Germantown, Tenn., elementary special education teacher's effort to find whose full name was on a broken off slab of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial -- reading RTLETT -- has had a ripple effect from Washington, to Alabama, Kentucky, Wisconsin

    Carter's effort will be celebrated this week when the 7th Armored Squadron 1st Air Cavalry -- known as Blackhawks -- meets for a reunion here to remember the fragment's namesake, the late Donnie S. Bartlett, who died in 1970, along with the 80 other members of the unit killed in action in Vietnam.
    About 90 of them will gather at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial with a wreath on Friday morning and read off all 81 names.

    Word of Carter's search for Donnie Bartlett has now reached Bartlett's 82-year-old father, Homer, and son Donnie Jr., born three months after his father's death.
    "I want to be there so bad I can taste it," retired car salesman Homer Bartlett of Opelika, Ala., said of the reunion that gets under way Thursday.
    By phone from Opelika, he remembered the 11 p.m. knock on the door when a soldier and Donnie's pregnant wife, Ann, delivered the news. He didn't get much information that night -- "the next couple of days were just a daze for

    The squadron's unofficial historian, R. William "Bill" Cromer of LaGrange, Ky., was putting together a history of the unit for this week's reunion when he came across a story about Carter's visit to the polished black Indian granite wall in May. Carter's father had been part of the Memphis crew that etched all 57,942 names onto granite slabs, including the RTLETT fragment that broke off and had to be re-done.

    Cromer didn't know Bartlett in Vietnam but contacted Mike Blackburn of Delavan, Wisc., the one man who survived the roadside bombing that killed the jeep's three other occupants on March 11, 1970.

    Blackburn, 58, who volunteered for the Army at 17, recalled that his and Bartlett's jeep was the lead vehicle, carrying a heavy 106-mm. machine gun on a tripod, in a column of trucks traveling through Kien Giang province in the Mekong River Delta. Bartlett had been driving but, when the convoy stopped briefly, Blackburn, the squad leader, took the wheel.
    "I think about it all the time," he said last week. "If we hadn't switched seats, I'd have been the one...I had a counselor tell me, he said, I shouldn't consider myself guilty. I should consider myself damn lucky," he said.

    Four guys from the 7/1 Powder Valley unit -- Lopez Jose Santos, John W. Luttrell, Lester P. Saba and Bartlett all died that day. They were part of a special air cavalry unit used to interdict Viet Cong soldiers and their supplies from entering South Vietnam.

    Donnie Stephen Bartlett had graduated from high school and had done a year at Southern Union College in Wadley, Ala., when he was drafted. He did basic training at Fort Benning, Ga., came home briefly, then left for Southeast Asia. His father saw him off at the airport in mid-December 1969. Three months later, he was dead.
    Ann Davis, 55, Bartlett's widow and a hairdresser in Opelika, remembered her late husband "got 'cutest' in high school and 'best looking' in college; he was very, very, very good looking -- too good looking to be a guy."
    She said theirs was a love at first sight. "We kind of looked at each other and that was it," she said of their first meeting after a basketball game. "It was not easy to get over it. I always kept hoping he would come back, that maybe they'd made a mistake and he might just be missing in action and just show up on my porch one day. But that never happened."
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  • NATIVE AMERICAN PRAYER

    Posted on 9/27/03 - by Chris Spencer cws71354@bellsouth.net
    It is said a man hasn't died as long as he is remembered. This prayer is a way for families, friends and fellow veterans to remember our fallen brothers and sisters. Do not stand at my grave and weep I am not there, I do not sleep. I am a thousand winds that blow, I am the diamond glints on snow. I am the sunlight on ripened grain, I am the gentle autumn rain. When you awaken in the morning hush, I am the swift, uplifting rush of quiet birds in circled flight, I am the stars that shine at night. Do not stand at my grave and cry, I am not there, I did not die.
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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 www.buildthecenter.org.