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VIETNAM WAR CASULTIES

Contributed by Larry Staffen - 2009


ALLEN, WILLIAM J., Sgt. ARMY,101st Airborne, Div. Drafted, Greenville, B. 08 June 1946, D. 22 Feb.1969, Binh Thuan, S. Vietnam K.I.A.
William John Allen was a 1965 graduate of Greenville High School Son of Mr. & Mrs. William G. Allen ,His Tour started 17 Apr. 1968, Buried Elmwood Cemetery, Cedar Springs, Mich. His name is listed on
Panel 32W Line 75 of the Vietnam War Memorial, Washington D.C.

*Newspaper article, Feb. 24,1969, Greenville Daily News-
Greenville Man Dies In Vietnam,- Word was received Sunday by the family of Sergeant John ( William ) Allen, 22, from the Department of the Army, of his death in Vietnam,His death was due to hostile artillery action.

Sgt. Allen was a 1965 Graduate of Greenville high School, before entering the service. He was employed by Doehler-Jarvis Corp. in Grand Rapids, Mich.He is survived by his father, William G. Allen, Comstock Park, step-father, Manus Brown, Greenville, 2 sisters, Mrs. Frank(Linda) Falsetta, & Mary Ann Allen, Greenville, a step-sister, Mrs. Delores Alquire, 2 brothers, Larry Allen, Sparta, & Rick Brown, Greenville. Sgt. Allen was preceded in death by his mother, Mrs. Brown, Dec. 4, 1968. Arrangements for services will be announced later by Brown -Teman Funeral Home pending arrival of the body from Vietnam. Sgt. Allen was the 10th Greenville- Belding- Montcalm serviceman to lose his life in the Vietnam War.

BAKER, THOMAS H., Cpl. U.S.M.C. Enlisted , Stanton, B. 28 Sept. 1945, D. 21 Feb.1967, Quang Nam, S. Vietnam, K.I.A.

Buried Forest Hills Cemetery, Stanton., Mich. His names is listed on Panel 15E Line 67 of the Vietnam War Memorial, Washington, D.C.

*Newspaper article Greenville Daily News.-

Marine Cpl. Thomas H. Baker has become the 4th Montcalm Co. serviceman to die in the war in Vietnam. Cpl. Baker was born in Lansing, Sept. 28th,1945 & was a lifelong resident of N. Lincoln St. He was a 1965 graduate of Central Montcalm High School. He won 4 letters in both football & track, & 3 letters in basketball. He was an Eagle Scout in the Stanton Boy Scout Troop & was a holder of an International Cert. in Scuba diving. After his high school graduation ,Cpl. Baker attended Ferris State College until enlisting in the Marine Corps, in Jan. 1966. He had been stationed in Vietnam since last July.
Announcement of Cpl. Bakers death was withheld until his parents, who were traveling between destinations in Florida, had been notified.
Besides his parents, survivors include a brother, Marine Sgt. H.W. Baker ,Honolulu, who is escorting his brothers body to Stanton, a sister, Mrs. Stanley( Penny) Thomsen, rural Stanton, his maternal grandmother, Mrs. Katherine Cady, St. Pereraburg, Fla. & his paternal grandmother, Mrs. Orra Baker , Grand Rapids.
Funeral services will be announced by Stebbins Funeral Home, Stanton, upon arrival of the body, The U.S.M.C. is in charge of the arrangements. A memorial fund for Cpl. Baker has been established & contributions may be made at Cent. Montcalm High School., Montcalm Central Bank in Stanton or Sheridan & at Stebbins Funeral Home.

BEACH, DEAN L. Maj. U.S.A.F. VESTABURG, Ser # 0-0030552, B. 16 Dec. 1928, D. 06 Oct.1968, Thailand D.N.H. Air Plane Crash.
Buried Ferris Center Cemetery, Vestaburg, Mich. He is the son of Clare H. & Gladys I.( Hare) Beach. His name is listed on
Panel 41W Line 21 of the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C.

*Newspaper article Oct. 7,1968 Greenville Daily News-

A Vestaburg Air Force Major died of injuries sustained in an airplane crash last Weds. In Thailand, according to Air Force spokesman. Maj. Dean L. Beach,39, son of Mr. & Mrs. Clare Beach, was the pilot of a Strategic Air Command KC- 135 Strato tanker that crashed while taking off from Utapao, Air Force Base near Bangkok. Beach died Sunday of multiple head injuries. Three other crewmen were killed instantly in the crash.
Maj. Beach was a 17 year veteran of the Air Force & was assigned to the 320th Bomb Wing at the time of his death. He had served a 13 month tour of duty in Vietnam then was assigned to Mather Air Force Base in California. He returned to Thailand around Sept. 1st for a special 2 month tour of duty. Maj. Beach was a graduate of Vestaburg High School & Central Michigan University. Funeral arrangements Will be announced later.

BICE, DOUGLAS W. SP-4, ARMY, 101ST Airborne Div. Drafted, SIDNEY,B. 09 Aug. 1949,D. 13 Mar. 1969, in Thua Thein, S. Vietnam K.I.A.
His Tour began 11 Jan. 1969,. His name is located on
Panel 29W Line 27 of the Vietnam War Memorial, in Washington, D.C.


ELTING, STEVEN V., P.F.C. ARMY, 11th Light Inf. Brig. VESTABURG, S.S.# 380-48-6507, B. 11 Aug. 1948, Vestaburg, Mich. D. 21 Sept. 1969,in Quang Ngai, S. Vietnam K.I.A.
His tour started on 5 Jan. 1969, His name is listed on
Panel 18W Line 120 of the Vietnam War MemorialWashington, D.C. He is the son of Vernon & Mary Elting.


FISK, RICHARD O. Sgt. ARMY, Vestaburg, S.S. # 374-54-2227, B. 30 June 1940, D. 16 Dec.1968 in Pleiku, S. Vietnam, D.N.H.
His tour began 22 Sept.1968 Buried Richland Twp. Cemetery, Vestaburg, Mich. His name is listed on
Panel 36W Line 29 of the Vietnam War Memorial, Washington, D.C.

*Newspaper Article Weds. Dec. 18th 1968.
VESTABURG MAN IS WAR VICTIM,- Vestaburg-

Sgt. Richard O. Fisk is the 10th Greenville-Belding- Montcalm Co. area serviceman to give his life in the Vietnam Conflict. His parents, Mr. & Mrs. Marion Fisk, Edgar Rd. received word that Sgt. Fisk,20,died in Vietnam Monday of wounds received in combat.Dec.9th . No info was received as to where in Vietnam he was.Sgt. Fisk was assigned to a Reactionary Unit & was called to various trouble spots.The telegram received by his parents said “ Death was caused by “ Metal fragments in the chest with cardiac arrest." Sgt. Fisk was a1966 graduate of Vestaburg High School. He entered the Army on Oct.23rd, 1967 & received his basic training at Ft. Knox, Ky.Services are pending the arrival of the body Survivors include, in addition to his parents are 3 brothers, Charles, Robert, & James, 3 sisters ,Mrs. Nita Marshall, Mrs. Nyla Holmes, & Mrs. Janice Hartman, his grandmother, Mrs. Bertha Jenkins,& 6 nieces & nephews all of rural Vestaburg.


FRIES, DANIEL L. Cpl. Army, Co. A 8th Cav. 1st Cav. Div. B. 14 Nov. 1949, D. 19 Oct. 1970,in Binh Thuy S. Vietnam.
His Tour began on 6 Apr. 1970, K.I.A. Son of Mr. & Mrs. Ernest Fries. Buried Forest Home Cemetery, Stanton, Mi. His Name is Located on
Panel 06W Line 9 of the Vietnam War Memorial, Washington D.C.

*Newspaper Article, Greenville Daily News

P.F.C. Daniel L. Fries, a 1967 graduate of Greenville High School. Has been killed in combat, in Vietnam. He was 20yrs old .Fries Parents, Mr. & Mrs. Ernest L. Fries were informed of their sons death Thurs., afternoon .He died Oct. 19,.Fries was born Nov. 14, 1949 in Greenville. He attended Montcalm Community College after high school,& entered the U.S. Army in July 1969. He was stationed at Ft. Benning, Ga. Before going to Vietnam. Fries was a rifleman in the 1stCalvary, Div., Air Mobile On Sept.20th Fries was decorated with the Bronze Star after he talked 16 Viet Cong into surrendering. He also received 3 Army Commendations medals for heroic action in Vietnam & Cambodia. Fries is the 20th Montcalm Co. area soldier to die in the Vietnam Conflict. Surviving besides his parents are, a sister Kathy, at home, & a maternal grandfather, Robert H. Johnson, Battle Creek, Mi.
Funeral arrangements are pending at Marshall Funeral Home, Greenville Oct.28,1970. Fries body arrived at Marshall’s this morning, & the family will meet with friends at the funeral home today & Friday from 7 to 9 p.m.

GILES, DENNIS L. Sp.4 ARMY, 1st Avn. Bde. DRAFTED, Greenville, B. 07 Sept. 1947, D. 24 Sept. 1968, in Thua Thein, S. Vietnam.
His Tour began 15 Mar. 1968,D.N.H. Buried Rest Haven Memory Gardens, Belding, Mich. His name is listed on
Panel 42W Line 5 of the Vietnam War Memorial, Washington, D.C.
*Note : On Sept. 24th the Helicopter carrying Dennis, as an observer crashed .


GROTH, WADE L. S. Sgt. ARMY, 50th Med. Det. 44th Med. Brig. Drafted, Ser# 290469962, GREENVILLE, S.S.# 290-46-9962, B. 14 May, 1947, D.12 Feb.1968, Quang Duc, S. Vietnam, M.I.A.
Buried, Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington Co., Virginia, Tour of duty began, 27 Oct., 1967. His name is listed on
Panel 39E Line 5 of the Vietnam War Memorial, Washington, D.C.
*Notes ; Staff Sgt. Groth was a member of the 50th Medical Detachment,44th Medical Brigade. On 12 Feb. 1968, he was the Crew Chief of a Bell Iroquois Utility Helicopter ( UH-1H) dispatched on a night medical evacuation from Ban MeThout to Gia Nghai Special Forces Camp in S. Vietnam. Contact was lost & he was declared M.I.A. His remains were not recovered. His name is inscribed on the Courts of the Missing, at the Honolulu Memorial.
*He was declared dead on 08 Sept. 1978.


HILDERBRANT, PHILLIP J. Sp.4 ARMY,173rd Airborne Brig. Enlisted , EDMORE, B. 12 Mar 1949, D. 31 July, 1970, in Kontum, S. Vietnam, K.I.A.
Buried Richland Twp. Cemetery, Vestaburg, Mich. Tour of Duty began on 8 Nov. 1969, His name is listed on
Panel 08W, Line 72, of the Vietnam War Memorial, in Washington, D.C.


JONES, DANNY LEE., P.F.C. ,U.S.M.C. ,M. Co. 3rd Batt. 9th Marines, Enlisted, GREENVILLE, B. 15 July 1946, D. 11 May, 1966, in Quang Nam, S. Vietnam, K.I.A.
Buried Rest Haven Memory Gardens, Mich. His name is listed on
Panel 07E Line 48 of the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington D.C.

Newspaper Article, Greenville Daily News. --

The Vietnam War gave Greenville its first Casualty, Wednesday, P.F.C. Danny Lee Jones,19, son of Mr. Mrs. James Jones was killed in action while fighting with the U.S.M.C. in Vietnam. Jones graduated in June of 1965 from Greenville High School before enlisting in the Marines Sept. 15,1965. He received basic combat training at Camp Pendelton, California before going to Vietnam Feb. 18th . While serving Jones was wounded twice. Surviving besides his parents are six Sisters, Mrs. Floyd Opdahl, Mrs. Edward Schmidt, Mrs. Maxine Scott, Mrs. Dale Cooper, & Mrs. John Rupert. Brothers are Robert, Richard, Don Michael, & Roger who is stationed with the U.S.A.F. in Maine. Funeral Services will be arranged by Huffman Funeral Home, Belding.

KORSON, GERALD E. L. Cpl. U.S.M.C. 9th Air Cav. Enlisted, GREENVILLE, B.14 Nov.1946, D. 14 June, 1968.in Quang Nam, S. Vietnam, K.I.A.
Buried St. Charles Cemetery, Greenville, Mich. Tour of Duty started 8 June 1966, His name is listed on
Panel 57W Line 19 of the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C.

*Newspaper Article Greenville Daily News

Marine L.Cpl. Gerald Korson, Fairplains St., Was killed in hostile enemy action near Quang Nam, in Vietnam Friday. His parents were informed Sunday. L.Cpl. Korson, assigned to the Tanker Section of a truck company, was knocked off the top of a refueling truck by a rocket blast during a hostile attack, he was knocked into some water, an electrical line also fell into the water, electrocuting him. L.Cpl. Is the 8th serviceman from Greenville- Belding-Montcalm area to lose their life in Vietnam. Funeral services will be Monday at 10 a.m. in St. Charles Catholic Church. The body is expected to arrive at Brown-Teman Funeral Home later today, A rosary will be recited Sunday at 8 p.m. at the funeral home. The Requiem funeral Mass will be held Monday at 10 a.m. ,in St. Charles Catholic Church with Rev. Father Edward Bielskas officiating. Burial will be in St. Charles Catholic Cemetery. Surviving besides his parents are 4 sisters, Mrs. Tom (Virginia ) Linda, Marsha & Erma all at home, & 4 brothers, Julian, Wayne, Donald & Frederick.

NOLL, DAVID ROGER, W.O., ARMY Reserve, 1st Cav. Div.Enlisted SHERIDAN, B. 24 Aug. 1946, D.01 Sept. 1970,in Long Khanh, S. Vietnam. K.I.A.
His tour began 8 Aug. 1970, Buried Crystal Twp. Cemetery, Crystal, Mich. His name is listed on
Panel 07W Line 31 of the Vietnam War Memorial, Washington, D.C.

*Notes U.S. Army W.O. served with the 9th Air Cav. He was a passenger pilot aboard a UH-1H Huey helicopter trying to establish communication with a reconnaissance team in Long Khanh, S. Vietnam. The weather was bad & terrain difficult when the aircraft hit a tree while making a turn & crashed to the ground. 3 other crew members aboard; Aircraft Comm. 1st Lt. Joseph L. Chambers, Co-pilot CW2 William R. Kersey Jr. & Crew Chief SP4 Larry Schoonmaker were also killed.


POMEROY, JACK W., Sp.4 ARMY,Co. C,221st Inf. 25th Inf. Div. Medical Spec. Div. S.S.# 373-50-8089 EDMORE, DRAFTED, B. 13 Oct. 1947, D. 25 Nov 1969,in Tay Ninh, S. Vietnam.

He is buried in Forest Hill Cemetery, Weidman, Isabella Co. Mich. K.I.A. His tour began 13 July, 1969. Roger is listed on Panel 16W Line 122 of the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C.
*Note*The soldiers that fought with "Doc" Jack all say he never carried a weapon while on patrol as a medic. Jack is the son of Cecil W. & Madiline ( Denslow ) Pomeroy.


PONTIUS, MARK D. Cpl., ARMY, 198th Light Inf. Brig. CORAL,DRAFTED, B. 28 Nov. 1949, D. 31 May, 1970,Quang Ngai, S. Vietnam, K.I.A.

His Tour Began 1 Mar, 1970, Listed on Panel 10W Line 126 on the Vietnam War Memorial, Washington, D.C.

*Newspaper Article, Greenville Daily News

Services will be held Tuesday, at 2 p.m. at St. Thomas Lutheran Church, Trufant, for P.F.C. Mark D. Pontius ,20, R.1 Coral, who was killed in action May 31st in Vietnam. His death brings the total servicemen from the Greenville-Belding-Montcalm area killed in Vietnam to 17. Pontius died of wounds suffered two days earlier when the armored personnel Carrier he was riding in hit a landmine near Chu Lai. He arrived in Vietnam March 1st. A graduate of Lakeview High School , Pontius Coached little league & peewee Baseball teams in Coral. Surviving are his wife, Diane, R.1 Coral, Mr. & Mrs. Durwood Pontius, Coral, a brother, David at home, two sisters Anne at home & Mrs. Edward Hale, Howard City, his paternal grandmother, Ruth Pontius, Dewitt, & his maternal grandparents, Mr. & Mrs. Fred Olsen, Sheridan. Pastor John Anderson, will officiate at the services , with burial in West Pine Cemetery, in Coral .Friends may call at Rogers- Germain Funeral Home Howard City, Monday Evening.

RENNER, LYNN C. Sp.4, ARMY, 1st. Cav. Div. HOWARD CITY, Enlisted, B.09 May, 1943, D. 26 Dec. 1965, S. Vietnam, D.N.H. Accidental homicide.
Buried Amble Cemetery, Amble, Mich. Tour of duty started 28 Nov. 1965. His name is listed on
Panel 04E Line 38 at the Vietnam War Memorial, Washington, D.C.

*Newspaper Article Grenville Daily News,--

Lynn Renner was born May 9, 1943 in Big Rapids, Mich.& moved to Howard City with his parents at the age of 7. His father died in March 1958. He graduated from Tri- County High School in 1962 where he was an outstanding member of the football & track teams. He enlisted in the Army Jan. 14,1963 & immediately Went to Ft. Gordon, Georgia for his basic combat training. Following basic, he served 1 year in Korea & then returned to Ft. Hood, Texas For six months. He went to Korea for 1 more year & then volunteered for service in Vietnam where he was killed after serving only 3 wks.
Survivors include his mother & stepfather, Mr.& Mrs. Lee Fitzpatrick; 2 sisters, Mrs. Sallee Maurer, Nancy Sipp, & 2 brothers Neil & Leland, also surviving are 2 step-sisters Judi Spence, & Marsha Willison, & his maternal grandfather, Carl Keeler. At about 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, a bugler sounded taps for the last time,& sounds of gunfire seemed to echo out, " Well done, good and faithful servant, well done.

RUSNELL, DANIEL J. P.F.C. U.S.M.C., VESTABURG, S.S.# 371-50-3698,B. 18 Feb. 1946, D. 24 Sept. 1966 ,Quang Tri, S. Vietnam, Multiple Fragmentation Wounds
His name is listed on
Panel 11E line 10 of the Vietnam War Memorial" The Wall" K.I.A.


WESTBROOK, THEODORE, E. P.F.C.,U.S.M.C., B. 08 Jan. 1947, D. 17 July, 1967, Quang Tri, S. Vietnam, K.I.A.
Buried Reynolds Twp. Cemetery, Howard City, Mich. His name is listed on
Panel 23E Line 84 of the Vietnam War Memorial


WILLIAMS, GERALD S., P.F.C.,U.S.M.C. Enlisted ,GREENVILLE, B. 23 March, 1949, D. 30 Apr. 1968,in Quang Tri, S. Vietnam, K.I.A.
Buried Rest Haven Memory Gardens, Belding, Mich. Tour of Duty began 24 Oct. 1967. His name is listed on
Panel 53E Line 26 at The Vietnam War Memorial, in Washington, D.C.

*News Article from the Greenville Daily News.

The War has brought tragedy to another Greenville family. Pvt. Gerald S. Williams,19, died as a result of being struck by fragments of a Mortar Shell in N. Vietnam on Apr. 30th.
His mother Mrs. Shannon O’Kief, Macomber St. was notified of Gerald’s death by a delegation of the U.S. Marines. They broke the news to her at the Lincoln Heights School, where Mrs. O’ Kief teaches third & fourth grade. Her husband manages the Waters shoe store in Greenville.
Pvt. Williams is the 7th young man from the Greenville- Belding -Montcalm area to lose his life in Vietnam. "I don’t know why were are sending our boys to die there." O’Kief said.
Gerald’s brother, Glen has already served a year in Vietnam & is completing his military duty at Camp Roberts in California. He is in the U.S. Army. Gerald wrote regularly & we had a letter from him on April 28th.,said O’Kief . He sent pictures, some film to be developed & money he wanted put in his savings account. Pvt. Williams has been in Vietnam since Oct.23rd .He enlisted May 21st 1967 while a senior in High School. His interests included wrestling & fishing. He liked people, the parents recall. His military service in Vietnam included a lengthy Period under constant shelling on the Rock Pile five miles from besieged Khe Sanh. He sustained loss of weight during his period of service & Was given a rest period that started March 22, his birthday,. Services were held at Brown-Teman Funeral Home, as flags flew half mast.
Burial was in Rest Haven Memory Gardens. The Rev. Fred Houston, pastor of Grace Lutheran Church,in Howell,the church Pvt. Williams Attended before moving to Greenville, said the world mourns the loss of American youth in foreign countries fighting for people they have so often never heard of except in passing. We can be proud, however he continued ,that Gerry has joined a host of young men & women who has laid down their lives in defense of America on the battlefields of blood. At Rest Haven Memory Gardens a Marine Honor Guard carried his casket to the grave & then fired a salute to their falling comrade . At the conclusion of the graveside ceremony the soft sound of Taps drifted with a light breeze across a blue sky & settled on a green turf. It reminded everyone that it was for the preservation of soft sounds, blue skies & green grass that Pvt. Williams made the supreme sacrifice amid loud blasts, smoke-filled skies & mud filled trenches.


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