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At 1530 hours the first C-123, with 44 passengers and a crew of five, began to land. These combined sources report a total of 354 KIA. The NVA’s main command post was located in Laos, at Sar Lit. In fact, neither side won a resounding victory. Name Rank & Service Date of Death Location of Name; John S. Alling Jr. Sp. The Vietnam-Era Military Personnel Records is a huge archive that holds as many as 4,638,952 records in its massive collection. This is useful for viewing the names of Gold Star veterans by localized regions within the state. RG 338 Records of U.S. Army Commands Among the dead Marines was 18-year-old Pfc Curtis Bugger. Vietnam War casualties from Michigan Click or Tap on name to find a personal memorial page of a casualty from this state. On January 14, Marines from Company B, 3rd Recon Battalion, were moving up the north slope of Hill 881 North, a few miles northwest of Khe Sanh Combat Base. The Johnson administration was no longer capable of convincing anybody that Vietnam War was a major defeat for the communists. The Marines fought long, hard and well at Khe Sanh, but they sacrificed in much greater numbers than has been acknowledged by official sources. The monumental Battle of Khe Sanh had begun, but the January 21 starting date is essentially arbitrary in terms of casualty reporting. The Americans wanted a military presence there to block the infiltration of enemy forces from Laos, to provide a base for launching patrols into Laos to monitor the Ho Chi Minh Trail, and to serve as a western anchor for defense along the DMZ. Only those killed in action during Operation Scotland, which began on November 1, 1967, and ended on March 31, 1968, were included in the official casualty count. They produced a body count ratio in the range between 50:1 and 75:1. U.S. Involvement in the Vietnam War: The Tet Offensive, 1968 In late January, 1968, during the lunar new year (or “Tet”) holiday, North Vietnamese and communist Viet Cong forces launched a coordinated attack against a number of targets in South Vietnam.The U.S. and South Vietnamese militaries sustained heavy losses before finally repelling the communist assault. Had the plane been shot down departing Khe Sanh, the casualties would have been counted. On April 5, 1968, MACV prepared an “Analysis of the Khe Sanh Battle” for General Westmoreland. If a battle tallied a sufficiently favorable body count ratio, American commanders declared victory, as they did after Khe Sanh. - U.S. MILITARY CASUALTIES IN SOUTHEAST ASIA - - DEATHS BY CALENDAR YEAR - - Year of death may either be actual or based on a presumptive finding of death- - (originally declared missing and later declared dead).-AS OF MARCH 31, 1997-Since 1997 93 names have been added to the memorial that are not show in the stats below. The base was officially closed on July 5. U.S. reconnaissance forces continued to monitor the Ho Chi Minh Trail. These records were transferred into the custody of the National Archives and Records Administration in 2008. The most controversial statistic in Vietnam was the number of killed in action (KIA) claimed by each side. About two hours later, an NVA artillery barrage scored a hit on the main ammunition dump at Khe Sanh Combat Base, killing Lance Corp. Jerry Stenberg and other Marines. On February 23 the U.S. U.S., Veterans' Gravesites, ca.1775-2019 From Terry Fincher, one of the greatest photographers of the 20th century. These alphabetical indexes are for your convenience but do not represent the order of names on the Wall. Operation Scotland II continued until the end of the year, resulting in the deaths of 72 more Marines. Both sides have published official histories of the battle, and while these histories agree the fighting took place at Khe Sanh, they disagree on virtually every other aspect of it. The most heavily used record group is: 1. In many respects, 1968 was very similar to 2020. Ray Stubbe has published a translation of the North Vietnamese history of the siege at Khe Sanh. Upon closer analysis, the official figure does not accurately portray even what it purports to represent. Stubbe examined the command chronologies of the 1st and 2nd battalions, 26th Marines, plus the after-action reports of the 3rd Battalion, 26th Marines; 1st Battalion, 9th Marines; 1st Battalion, 13th Marines; and more than one dozen other units, all present at Khe Sanh under 26th Marine operational control. Fighting around Khe Sanh was continuous. Time magazine, in an April 12, 1968, article titled “Victory at Khe Sanh,” reported General William Westmoreland, commander of U.S. forces in Vietnam, after flying into Khe Sanh by helicopter, declaring: “We took 220 killed at Khe Sanh and about 800 wounded and evacuated. Memorial pages honoring Vietnam War casualties, listed by their last names. Ho Chi Minh’s oft-quoted admonition to the French applied equally to the Americans: “You can kill ten of my men for every one I kill of yours, but even at those odds, you will lose and I will win.” The calculation by Stubbe that approximately 1,000 Americans died on the Khe Sanh battlefield is especially compelling, given that Stubbe’s numbers are accompanied by names and dates of death. This article was written by Peter Brush and originally published in the June 2007 issue of Vietnam Magazine. The NVA surrounded Khe Sanh in an attempt to force the Marines to break out of their fighting positions, which would make it easier to engage and destroy them. Shortly after midnight on February 7, a large NVA force, reinforced with tanks, attacked the camp. For example, I served with a Marine heavy mortar battery at Khe Sanh during the siege. Khe Sanh Front from January 20 until July 20, 1968, totaled 2,469. Philip V, the first Bourbon King of Spain. Phil Ochs, singer, songwriter, producer; best known for his protest songs of the 1960s. See a list of Cayuga Vietnam War Veterans. They too were left out of the official Khe Sanh casualty count. The following tables were generated from the Vietnam Conflict Extract Data File of the Defense Casualty Analysis System (DCAS) Extract Files, which is current as of April 29, 2008.The Vietnam Conflict Extract Data File of the Defense Casualty Analysis System (DCAS) Extract Files contains records of 58,220 U.S. military fatal casualties of the Vietnam War. On May 7, 2019 the Honor States organization, in conjunction with Spirit of'45, was selected to be a featured content provider at the American Veterans Center hosted event in tribute to the 75th anniversary of D-Day. Since the official duration of the battle ends even earlier than the termination of the siege itself, a wider definition of the Khe Sanh battlefield to include Operations Scotland, Pegasus and Scotland II also seems reasonable. MN: 05-12-1968: Vietnam: Army: 4: Edwin Arthur Ackerman Jr. MN: 02-19-1969: Vietnam: Army: 5: Arnold Alvin Ades . This fighting was heavy, involving South Vietnamese militia as well as U.S. Army MACV advisers and Marines attached to a Combined Action Company platoon. The losses—indicating that the enemy suffered a major defeat—were estimated at 3,550 KIA inflicted by delivered fires (i.e., aerial and artillery bombardment) and 2,000 KIA from ground action, for a total of 5,550 estimated North Vietnamese killed in action as of March 31. 2,800-6,000 civilians were killed by the Viet Cong and North Vietnamese forces in the Hue Massacre throughout February, 1968. The official, public estimate of 10,000 to 15,000 North Vietnamese KIA stands in contrast to another estimate made by the American military. The Pegasus force consisted of the Army 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile) plus the 1st Marine Regiment. It was the only time Americans abandoned a major combat base because of enemy pressure. Early in the war (1965 and 1966) when blacks made up about 11 percent of our Vietnam force, black casualties soared to more than 20 percent of the total. The National Archives and Records Administration prepared these Vietnam War casualty lists by creating extracts from the military casualty data files in the Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense (Record Group 330). By nearly every metric, the Vietnam War was, in the common sense of the word, a war.The United States committed some 550,000 troops to the Vietnam front at the height of the conflict, suffered more than 58,000 casualties, and engaged in battle after battle with communist forces in the region until its withdrawal in 1973. Two Marines died. The Marine garrison was also reinforced, and on November 1, 1967, Operation Scotland began. You can scroll down to see the names of casualties listed under their official city. North Vietnamese troops launched the Tet Offensive in January 1968, which was successful against South Vietnam and the U.S. According to the official Marine Corps history of the battle, total fatalities for Operation Scotland were “205 friendly KIA.” The Marines recorded an actual body count of 1,602 NVA killed  but estimated the total NVA dead at between 10,000 and 15,000. Mar 29, 2018 ... Vietnam, February 1968. Due to severe losses, however, the NVA abandoned its plan for a massive ground attack. They were not included in the official Khe Sanh counts. Black leaders, including Martin Luther King Jr., protested, and President Johnson ordered black participation in combat units cut back. By early 1967, the Marine position was reinforced to regimental strength. By the middle of January 1968, some 6,000 Marines and Army troops occupied the Khe Sanh Combat Base and its surrounding positions. Khe Sanh had long been responsible for the defense of Lang Vei. The Marine defense of Khe Sanh, Operation Scotland, officially ended on March 31. Seven miles west of Khe Sanh on Route 9, and about halfway to the Laotian border, sat the U.S. Army Special Forces camp at Lang Vei. The 1968 Battle of Khe Sanh was the longest, deadliest and most controversial of the Vietnam War, pitting the U.S. Marines and their allies against the North Vietnamese Army.Both sides have published official histories of the battle, and while these histories agree the fighting took place at Khe Sanh, they disagree on virtually every other aspect of it. None of the deaths associated with Scotland II are included in the official count. Its mission was to destroy the Special Forces and their Vietnamese allies and to ambush any reinforcements coming from Khe Sanh. Battlefield boundaries extended from eastern Laos eastward along both sides of Route 9 in Quang Tri province, Vietnam, to the coast. U.S. Marines in Vietnam, The Defining Year, 1968 like the preceding volumes in this series is largely based upon the holdings of the Marine Corps Historical Center. Westmoreland echoed this judgment in his memoirs, and, using exactly the same figures, concluded that the North Vietnamese had suffered a most damaging and one-sided defeat. These include the official unit command chronologies, after-action reports, message and journal files, various staff studies, oral histories, personal papers, and reference collections. In 1966 the Marines built a base adjacent to the Army position, and organized their combat activities around named operations. Vietnam War, Casualties Returned Alive, 1962-1979. These forces, including support troops, totaled 20,000 to 30,000. Ten American soldiers were killed; the rest managed to escape down Route 9 to Khe Sanh. The tower at Khe Sanh instructed the pilot to take evasive action and go around for another approach. The NVA continued shelling the base, and on July 1 launched a company-sized infantry attack against its perimeter. The NVA 304th Division’s history notes that on “9 July 1968, the liberation flag was waving from the flag pole at Ta Con [Khe Sanh] airfield.” On July 13, 1968, Ho Chi Minh sent a message to the soldiers of the Route 9–Khe Sanh Front affirming “our victory at Khe Sanh.”. The year 1968 saw major developments in the Vietnam War.The military operations started with an attack on a US base by the North Vietnamese People's Army of Vietnam (PAVN) and the Viet Cong (VC) on January 1, ending a truce declared by the Pope and agreed upon by all sides. Vietnam War, Awards and Decorations of Honor, 1965-1972. Marine Khe Sanh veteran Peter Brush is Vietnam Magazine’s book review editor. The deadliest week of the Vietnam War for the USA was during the Tet Offensive specifically February 11–17, 1968, during which period 543 Americans were killed in action, and 2547 were wounded. On April 15, Operation Pegasus ended and Operation Scotland II began. At about 0640 hours the NVA 7th Battalion, 66th Regiment, 304th Division, attacked the Huong Hoa District headquarters in Khe Sanh village. 9 Haunting and Rare Pictures of the Vietnam War. But Pisor also pointed out that “205 is a completely false number.” One had to meet certain criteria before being officially considered KIA at Khe Sanh. HistoryNet.com is brought to you by Historynet LLC, the world's largest publisher of history magazines. His estimated total of civilian deaths is 587,000. There was disease and rioting. Consequently, and unknown at the time, Operation Scotland became the starting point of the Battle of Khe Sanh in terms of Marine casualty reporting. Because of washed-out bridges and heavy enemy activity, however, the only way for Americans to get to Khe Sanh was by helicopter or airplane. This database contains information about awards and decorations of honor awarded to U.S. and allied foreign military personnel during the Vietnam War. Beginning in October 1967, the Communists greatly increased their forces in the Khe Sanh area to total two infantry divisions, two artillery regiments and an armored regiment. An additional 413 Marines were killed during Scotland II as of the end of June 1968. Those 10 deaths were also left out of the official statistics. MN: ... Vietnam War. Mary Ashton Livermore, a temperance worker, women's rights activist, lecturer, and writer. A U.S. Marine watches over bodies awaiting transport near Khe Sanh. Rather than being a few hundred or a thousand college students … A closer look at the Khe Sanh body count, however, reveals anything but a straightforward matter of numbers. RG 319 Army Staff 3. The enemy by my count suffered at least 15,000 dead in the area.”. The deaths of U.S. Air Force personnel, estimated between five and 20, are also omitted. The Vietnam War was a long, deadly struggle that took place from 1954 to 1975 between North Vietnam and South Vietnam The U.S. National Archives shows that 58,220 U.S. soldiers perished. U.S. MILITARY FATAL CASUALTIES OF THE VIETNAM WAR FOR HOME-STATE-OF-RECORD: MASSACHUSETTS Prepared by the National Archives and Records Administration From the Defense Casualty Analysis System (DCAS) Files. Gaynor, now 70, spent more than a year in Vietnam between 1967 and 1968, taking photographs as he went. Mobile combat operations continued against the North Vietnamese. As journalist Robert Pisor pointed out in his 1982 book, The End of the Line: The Siege of Khe Sanh, no other battle of the entire war produced a better body count or kill ratio than that claimed by the Americans at Khe Sanh. The figures of 5,500 NVA dead and 1,000 U.S. dead yield a ratio of 5.5:1. Khe Sanh was situated on Route 9, the major east-west highway. It is difficult to support the claim of an overwhelming American victory at Khe Sanh based solely on the ratios derived from the official casualty count. The attack was to have been supported by armor and artillery. Historian Ronald Spector, in the book After Tet: The Bloodiest Year in Vietnam, noted that American casualties in the 10 weeks after the start of Operation Pegasus were more than twice those officially reported during the siege. He suggests that another 222,000 civilians were counted as military deaths by the U.S. in compiling its "body count." This is the number of Days of clean healthy, American Veterans Center 75th D-Day Congressional Reception. The report, originally classified as secret, noted that intelligence from many sources indicated conclusively that the North Vietnamese had planned a massive ground attack against the base. The Marine Corps casualty reporting system was based on named operations and not geographic location. Besieged, Khe Sanh could only be resupplied by air. The Khe Sanh battlefield was considerably more extensive from the North Vietnamese perspective than from that of the U.S. Marine Corps, both geographically and chronologically. Khe Sanh is a village located near the Laotian border and just south of the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) that separated North and South Vietnam. The lists are based on the "home of record - state" data provided by the serviceman or woman upon last entrance into military service. By comparison, according to another Army general, a 10:1 ratio was considered average and 25:1 was considered very good. The plane, piloted by Lt. Col. Frederick J. Hampton, crashed in a huge fireball a few miles east of Khe Sanh, killing all aboard. The Army’s 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile), with more than 400 helicopters under its control, conducted airmobile operations deeper into enemy-controlled areas. When an enemy rocket-propelled grenade killed 2nd Lt. Randall Yeary and Corporal Richard John, although these Marines died before the beginning of the siege, their deaths were included in the official statistics. OR To shorten the name list, enter 2 or more letters of any part of a name in the box below. RG 334 Records of Interservice Agencies 4. MACV therefore initiated an operation to open Route 9 to vehicle traffic. Operation Pegasus forces, however, were highly mobile and did not attack en masse down Route 9 far enough west of Khe Sanh for the NVA, by then dispersed, to implement their plan. The next operations were named Crockett and Ardmore. Here are some of the most powerful pictures taken by Larry Burrows during his coverage of the Vietnam War. This took place at the Rayburn House in Washington DC, the center of Congressional Representative offices. On July 11, the Marines finally left Khe Sanh. If that failed, and it did, they hoped to attack American reinforcements along Route 9 between Khe Sanh and Laos. Tap this upper portion to remove the keypad. Leonid Brezhnev, Soviet General Secretary of the Communist party and President of the Supreme Soviet from 1964 until 1982. But only by checking my service record while writing this article did it become evident that I had participated in all three operations. The 1968 Battle of Khe Sanh was the longest, deadliest and most controversial of the Vietnam War, pitting the U.S. Marines and their allies against the North Vietnamese Army. The Marines knew that their withdrawal from Khe Sanh would present a propaganda victory for Hanoi. HistoryNet.com contains daily features, photo galleries and over 5,000 articles originally published in our various magazines. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. has the names listed in chronological order by date of loss. U.S. Military Fatal Casualties of the Vietnam War for Pima County, Arizona. The Marines at Khe Sanh Combat Base broke out of their perimeter and began attacking the North Vietnamese in the surrounding area. The American military presence at Khe Sanh consisted not only of the Marine Corps Khe Sanh Combat Base, but also Forward Operating Base 3, U.S. Army (FOB-3). The records are dated during the 1960s and 1970s and include individuals who … MN: 07-03-1968: Vietnam: Marines: 6: Frederic Gustave Agather . America paid a terrible price for its involvement in the Vietnam War - nearly 60,000 killed-in-action, over 150,000 wounded, and some 1,600 missing. It was difficult to distinguish between civilians and military personnel in many instances as many individuals were part-time guerrillas or impressed laborer… Try our genealogy search engine. In August 1964, North Vietnamese torpedo boats attacked two U.S. destroyers in the Gulf of Tonkin, and President Lyndon B. Johnson ordered the retaliatory bombing of military targets in North Vietnam. Since the Marines on board were not yet officially attached to the 26th Marine Regiment, their deaths were not included in the official Khe Sanh count, nor were the several other deaths associated with aircraft crashes. The Marines withdrew all salvageable material and destroyed everything else. That afternoon, as a rescue force was dispatched to the village, Army Lt. Col. Joseph Seymoe and other soldiers died when their helicopter was attacked. At 0330 hours, soldiers of the NVA 6th Battalion, 2nd Regiment, 325C Division, attacked the Marines on Hill 861. The fighting was heavy. The official statistics yield a KIA ratio of between 50:1 and 75:1 of North Vietnamese to U.S. military deaths. 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