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POSTED ON 5.29.2023
POSTED BY: Candace Burns Washam

Remembering My Best Friend Rusty

We met when I was a new Freshman girl at Madison Junior High School in 1961. Rusty’s kindness, smile, and easy going likable manner won me over. We dated on and off for years, even after my family moved around a lot, we never lost touch. The last letter I received from Rusty, he wanted to marry me. I felt honored he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. I wrote back to him letting him know how I felt about his proposal. He never received my letter. I still have his letters and the last one I wrote to him….return to sender. I truly believe certain people are born angels and Rusty was definitely born one. I visited his mother often for a while after his passing. She was a beautiful, classy woman and loved Rusty more than anyone. On this Memorial Day weekend, I’m remembering Rusty. God bless u Rusty and God bless your family. I cherish the memories and time I had spent with u. Thank u for your service and I thank all your Army comrades who sacrificed their lives so we can live ours. Love Candy Burns Washam
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POSTED ON 6.23.2022
POSTED BY: John Fabris

honoring you...

Thank you for your service to our country so long ago sir. In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years. May you rest in eternal peace.
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POSTED ON 5.31.2022
POSTED BY: Buzz Nuse

The guy I looked up to as I was growing up.

Rusty was a great athlete at Madison HS. He'd walk past my house often as he made his way home. He always had time to throw a football or just say hi to me. It was a heartfelt loss to Madison when Rusty was killed serving his country.
An award is given annually in his name. I was honored to receive that award in 1971. More than 50 years later, it is the most memorable recognition I ever received. I am proud to have known him.
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POSTED ON 10.4.2020
POSTED BY: Jury Washington

Thank You For Your Valiant Service Soldier.

We can never truly repay the great debt we owe our fallen heroes. Rest in peace SP4. Engle, I salute your brave soul.
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POSTED ON 10.28.2018

Final Mission of SP4 Russell W. Engle

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]
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