The Wall of Faces

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LAWRENCE RYLAND KOMAN

  • Wall Name:LAWRENCE R KOMAN
  • Date of Birth:7/8/1944
  • Date of Casualty:3/30/1968
  • Home of Record:ALIQUIPPA
  • County of Record:BEAVER COUNTY
  • State:PA
  • Branch of Service:MARINE CORPS
  • Rank:2LT
  • Panel/Line:47E, 13
  • Casualty Province:QUANG TRI

LARRY GEORGE MANUEL

  • Wall Name:LARRY G MANUEL
  • Date of Birth:5/26/1949
  • Date of Casualty:3/30/1968
  • Home of Record:EFFINGHAM
  • County of Record:EFFINGHAM COUNTY
  • State:IL
  • Branch of Service:ARMY
  • Rank:PFC
  • Panel/Line:47E, 13
  • Casualty Province:KONTUM

JOHN FRANCIS LINK


is honored on Panel 47E, Line 13 of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Leave a Remembrance

REMEMBRANCES

  • Distinguished Service Cross Citation

    Posted on 3/30/14 - by A Grateful Vietnam Vet
    Distinguished Service Cross

    Awarded for actions during the Vietnam War

    The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918 (amended by act of July 25, 1963), takes pride in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) to Sergeant John Francis Link (ASN: RA-17731124), United States Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Detachment B-52, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces. Specialist Four Link distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 29 March 1968 as Special Forces advisor to a Vietnamese platoon conducting a combat operation in enemy territory. The unit had just completed a helicopter assault into an exposed landing zone when it was subjected to intense automatic weapons, rocket, grenade and mortar fire from an enemy force occupying positions on three sides of the landing zone. Braving a withering hail of hostile fire, Specialist Link raced across the open clearing and removed equipment from two helicopters which had been shot down by the savage fusillade. He placed fierce fire on the enemy and assisted three wounded comrades to the relative safety of a rise of ground at the edge of the landing zone. Continuing to expose himself to the barrage, Specialist Link fearlessly left his unit's hasty defensive perimeter numerous time throughout the raging battle to treat casualties and pull them to cover. He was thrown to the ground and wounded by rocket and mortar fire, but got up and courageously resumed his lifesaving efforts. While shielding the body of a fallen soldier from the ravaging enemy fire, Specialist Link was mortally wounded. Specialist Four Link's extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty, at the cost of his life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.
    General Orders: Headquarters, U.S. Army, Vietnam, General Orders No. 1840 (April 20, 1968)

    Action Date: 29-Mar-68

    Service: Army

    Rank: Sergeant

    Company: Detachment B-52

    Regiment: 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne)

    Division: 1st Special Forces
    MORE
  • John Link's story in Jim Morris' "War Story"

    Posted on 3/18/14 - by Robert Haas
    Former Special Forces Captain Jim Morris refers to John Link near the end of his book "War Story", pages 351-353.

    According to Morris, John Link and his Buddy Merriman were looking for volunteers to help carry about 15 wounded (american SF and helicopter crewmen as well as vietnamese troops of the 91st Airborne Ranger Battalion) from a bombcrater under enemy machine gun fire to a safer position for further treatment / medevac. The action took place in a Landing Zone while waiting for another lift of troops to come in. Cpt. Morris was one of the few volunteers who helped and got badly hit himself while providing cover fire for Link and Merriman. Because of the severe damage to his hand and loss of blood, Cpt Morris was unable to help the two of them over a earthen berm after Link and Merriman were hit, too. John Link was recovered but died the next day, during the move to a nearby LZ for extraction by helicopter.
    In this final part of his book, Cpt Morris has repeatedly expressed his grief about being unable to do more for these brave men. Morris was evacuated just in time himself and managed to keep his hand.

    Thanks, Mr Link, for trying to help those wounded. It takes a lot more courage than I ever had to prove to voluntarily come back for a second tour of duty and do what you have done that day alone.

    I think about you guys.
    MORE
  • The Story of Johnny's Heroism

    Posted on 12/5/13 - by Gary B. Blackburn
    The story of Johnny Link's heroism and death is now told in the dedication of the book "Unlikely Warriors: The Army Security Agency's Secret War in Vietnam 1961-1973."
    MORE
  • Remembering An American Hero

    Posted on 12/3/13 - by Curt Carter ccarter02@earthlink.net
    Dear SGT John Francis Link, 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.

    May God allow you to read this, and may He allow me to someday shake your hand when I get to Heaven to personally thank you. May he also allow my father to find you and shake your hand now to say thank you; for America, and for those who love you.

    With respect, and the best salute a civilian can muster for you, Sir

    Curt Carter
    MORE
  • Johnny and I drove from Iowa to NC together in December 1965.

    Posted on 3/28/13 - by Gary B. Blackburn gbblackburn@yahoo.com

    'Braving a withering hail of hostile fire, Specialist Link raced across the open clearing and removed equipment from two helicopters which had been shot down by the savage fusillade. He placed fierce fire on the enemy and assisted three wounded comrades to the relative safety of a rise of ground at the edge of the landing zone. Continuing to expose himself to the barrage, Specialist Link fearlessly left his unit's hasty defensive perimeter numerous times throughout the raging battle to treat casualties and pull them to cover. He was thrown to the ground and wounded by rocket and mortar fire, but got up and courageously resumed his lifesaving efforts. While shielding the body of a fallen soldier from the ravaging enemy fire, Specialist Link was mortally wounded.' The section above is from the Presidential Order conferring the DSC to John.




    If you are interested in reading an amazing account of John's heroism and death, Vietnam vet and best-selling author Jim Morris tells the story in chapter 32 of his novel 'War Story.' He was with John when he was mortally wounded.

    MORE
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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.