The Wall of Faces

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JAMES HENRY CAVICCHI JR


is honored on Panel 6E, Line 31 of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Leave a Remembrance

REMEMBRANCES

  • Final Mission of LCPL James H. Cavicchi Jr.

    Posted on 11/11/17 - by wkillian@smjuhsd.org
    On March 21, 1966, during Operation Texas, thirty U.S Marine Corps UH-34D helicopters from HMM-261, HMM-363, and HMM-364, escorted by four armed UH-1E helicopters of Marine Observation Squadron 6 (VMO-6), lifted two companies plus a command group (405 troops total) of 3rd Battalion, 1st Marines, from Ky Ha Air Facility to an unsecure landing zone (LZ) in Quang Ngai Province, RVN. M Company, 3/1, was inserted first to make safe the LZ, a large dry rice paddy, for the following waves of aircraft. Approximately 1000 meters west of the LZ, a VC/NVA 12.7mm machine gun was firing into the LZ from a draw located on a small hill. Several A-4 attack jet air strikes failed to silence the weapon. In the next wave of aircraft, a UH-34D (#145802) approached the LZ carrying K Company, 3/1. The enemy machine gun would target this helicopter. The aircraft was 50 feet or so off the deck when the 12.7mm rounds began impacting. The helicopter jerked slightly each time a round hit it. The aircraft then nosed over sharply. The pilot apparently pulled back hard on his controls to avoid a nose-first crash because the helicopter reared up like a stallion with its forelegs pawing the air. The aircraft’s rear rotor blade and tail boom then hit a high paddy dike. The helicopter crumpled backward into the paddy as the fuel tank exploded and engulfed the aircraft for a split second. M Company was only 100 meters away from the crash site and immediately sent a corpsman and rifle squad over to provide aid. When they arrived at the still burning helicopter, it was apparent that everyone in the passenger and crew compartments were dead. The UH-34's cockpit was elevated and forward of the passenger and crew area. The two pilots, 1LT Noah M. Kraft and 1LT Thomas A. Bird Jr., could be seen struggling to free themselves. They were badly burned. The corpsman and another rifleman ran through the still burning debris to free the pilots. As they did so, the magnesium rotor hub exploded. The blast went up and over their heads, only causing them some minor burns. The other riflemen avoided being caught in the explosion since they were a few feet beyond the blast radius setting up security. The Marine rifle platoon leader threw a smoke grenade into the LZ and a helicopter immediately landed. 1LT Bird died before being put into the medevac. The other pilot, 1LT Kraft, though suffering terribly, was still alive. The corpsman rode with him in the medevac back to Chu Lai. Kraft died as they arrived at B Med in Chu Lai. The two other lost UH-34 crewmen were crew chief GSGT Calvin K. Chow and gunner GSGT Benito Igarta Jr. The lost members of K Company included PFC Louis A. Ambrose, LCPL Dennis R. Andrew, LCPL James H. Cavicchi Jr., SGT John A. Mitchell, PFC Bruce L. Watkins, and PFC Billie J. Williams. [Taken from popasmoke.com]
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  • THANKS

    Posted on 10/28/17 - by Lucy Conte Micik Bennysgift@gmail.com
    Dear LCPL James Cavicchi,
    Thank you for your service as a Machine Gunner. 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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  • I'm proud of our Vietnam Veterans

    Posted on 8/7/17 - by Dennis Wriston
    Lance Corporal James Henry Cavicchi Jr., Served with the Weapons Platoon, Company K, 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, Third Marine Amphibious Force.
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  • Last Night

    Posted on 12/27/15 - by Anonymous
    I saw you right before you left for Vietnam. You walked me home from your own farewell party because I was alone. You wanted to keep me safe. I will never forget your kindness. I was looking forward to your return but it never was to come. I will never forget you. I honor you and your brave service. Thank You!
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  • Semper Fi Marine.

    Posted on 3/21/14 - by A US Marine, Vietnam
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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.