August / September's Corner

Note! We started collecting 2020 dues July 1st. Remember the actual membership year works on the calendar year. We start collecting dues July 1, and hope everyone is paid up by January 1. The Post benefits with rewards if we make that happen.

I am once again going to harp about the number of members who don’t attend meetings, activities or visit the lounge. We need you. We need your presence, your help and your money. The Post can’t run itself without all three. Its more ways a Post can die along with no one willing to serve it.

The Honor Guard needs new members. We have recently lost three members, 2 have passed away and 1 has moved away. The Honor Guard is an integral part of this Post. We need to grow in numbers so that we can continue our service to the Post and our community.

August 7, 1964 congress approved “all necessary actions” in Vietnam. August 11, 1972 U.S. Combat troops leave South Vietnam. Construction on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial started March 26, 1982. Here is a little history that most people will never know.

There are 58,320 names now listed on that polished black wall, including those added in 2018.

The names are arranged in the order in which they were taken from us by date and within each date the names are alphabetized. It is hard to believe it is 61 years since the first casualty.

The first known casualty was Richard B. Fitzgibbon, North Weymouth, Mass. Listed by the U.S. Department of Defense as having been killed on June 8, 1956. His name is listed on the Wall with that of his son, Marine Corps Lcpl Richard B. Fitzgibbon, III who was killed on Sept. 7, 1965.

There are three sets of fathers and sons on the Wall, 39,996 on the Wall were just 22 or younger, and 8,283 were just 19 years old. The largest age group, 33,103 were 18 years old, 12 soldiers on the Wall were 17 years old, 5 soldiers on the Wall were 16 years old. One soldier, PFC Dan Bullock was 15 years old. 997 soldiers were killed on their first day in Vietnam and 1,448 soldiers were killed on their last day in Vietnam, 21 sets of brothers are on the Wall and 31 sets of parents lost two of their sons. 54 soldiers attended Thomas Edison High School in Philadelphia. I wonder why so many from one School. 8 Women are on the Wall. 244 soldiers were awarded the Medal of Honor during the Vietnam War; 153 of them are on the Wall.

Beallsville, Ohio with a population of 475 lost 6 of her sons. West Virginia had the highest casualty rate per capita in the nation. There are 711 West Virginians on the Wall.

The Marines of Morenci - They led some the scrappiest high school football and basketball teams that the little Arizona copper town of Morenci (pop 5,058) had ever known and cheered. They enjoyed roaring beer busts. In quieter moments, they rode horses along the Coronado Trail, stalked deer in the Apache National Forest. And in the patriotic camaraderie typical of Morenci’s mining families, the nine graduates of Morenci High enlisted as a group in the Marine Corps. Their service began on Independence Day, 1066. Only 3 returned home.

The Buddies of Midvale -LeRoy Tafoya, Jimmy Martinez, and Tom Gonzales were all boyhood friends and lived on three consecutive streets in Midvale, Utah on Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Avenues. They lived only a few yards apart. They played ball at adjacent sandlot ball fields. And they all went to Vietnam. In a span of 16 days in late 1967, all three would be killed. LeRoy was killed on Wednesday, Nov. 22, the fourth anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination. Jimmy died less than 24 hours after Thanksgiving Day. Tom was shot dead assaulting the enemy on Dec. 7, Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.

The most casualty deaths for a single day was on January 31, 1968 - 245 deaths. The most casualty deaths for a single month was May 1968 - 2,415 casualties were incurred.

God Bless them all and to those that survived. “Welcome Home.”

For God and Country - Commander Dave




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February/March News

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