Final Missions

This page is a memorial for all O Deuce troopers who have died after coming home from Viet Nam. We do not have lists to refer to, so for them to appear on this page it will require that their brothers who still live send us their info. Please send a photo or two if you have them available (one from Viet Nam, one recent would be very good), memories about who they were in Viet Nam and/or afterwards.

Robert "Buffalo Bob" Corey (HHC Recondo 65-66): October 20, 2014

Obituary and Memorial Service info

Robert Corey

Jack "Doc" Treese (Charlie 67-68): October 1, 2014

Jack was born on October 5, 1945 and grew up in Titusville, Florida. He enlisted in the Army after high school, and served as a combat medic with the 101st Airborne Division in Vietnam from 1967-1968, earning two Bronze Stars and two Purple Hearts. He retired from the Army, after 23 years, as a Chief Warrant Officer 2 and became a Physician Assistant. He practiced with an ophthalmologist, dermatologist, HMO, and cosmetic surgeon, maintaining his license until his passing.
Breitbart Memoriam

I first met Jack in the field at Doc Pho, SVN, in early June 1967 when I reported to Charlie Co. As a “Cherry” I was completely at the mercy of the rugged country of Viet Nam. I went to third platoon, Sgt Larry Fletcher was my platoon Sgt. Those days were a swirl of new experiences and I was along for the ride. Up and down hills and hollers and through creeks, rivers and of course rice paddies. It didn’t take long and the living conditions began to impact my body. Heat, humidity, rain, steep terrain, leeches, and of course the enemy kept me ducking every time I heard a shot.

I was having trouble with infections, Jungle Rot. My arms were constantly oozing pus and every little scratch I got caused more discomfort and soon I was covered with little patches of oozing sores. I was issued a new pair of Jungle Boots when I got in country and they were making my feet hurt. I didn’t want to take my boots off so I wore them all the time. Little did I know what a mistake that was until I began to have trouble walking. I couldn’t stand the pain any longer so I went looking for the Medic, surely he could fix me up, I thought.

I had never even spoken to Jack up to that point. He was always with the LT or back with Fletcher near the rear of the platoon. Well I tracked him down and explained my situation to him and of course he said, “take off your boots let’s have a look”. He could tell I was hurting because I walked like I had a cobb up my rear and groaned a lot. Well, after about 10 minutes of pressure from Doc I finally gave in and took off my boots. Jack gasped, took a deep breath and said, “I’m sending you to the rear”. I pleaded with him to fix me up and let me stay, I was needed by my squad I said, as if they couldn’t get along with out me. I offered him extra “Cs” , especially peaches and pound cake. I had learned real quick that peaches were worth a lot as a bargaining chip. He looked me over and finally said “ok” but if you are not better by the next resupply you have to go back to the rear. He put some ugly looking concoction he mixed up on my sore ankles and told me to take my boots off once a day and change my socks as often as I could.

Well in a couple of days my sore feet/ankles were better and I didn’t have to leave the field after all. He continued to monitor my other jungle rot sites and I was able to build up a resistance to the infections from the scratches, cuts, etc. and from that time on Jack and I were the best of friends.

I will always remember him as compassionate, caring, friendly person who tried to take good care of the troops.

You will be missed my friend. Rest in peace.

- Mike Perry

Jack Treese

George Mercado (Charlie 65-66): September 24, 2013

Awaiting further information...

George Mercado

Pedro G Ambriz (Bravo 69): April 26, 2013

From the Mission Park Memorial:
"Pedro G. Ambriz was born on Januray 3, 1934 and passed away on April 26, 2013 at the age of 79. He is preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his loving wife Rachel A. Ambriz and daughters: Rachel Ambriz Ford , Janie A. Ambriz Caballero (Edward), and Renee A. Juarez (Richard), Sons: Pedro Ambriz Jr., Roland Ambriz (Soila), Jesse Ambriz and Michael Ambriz also numberous grand children and great grand children. He will be dearly missed by all who knew and loved him."

"Pepe" Ambriz died 4/26/13 in San Antonio. He was the 2nd PSG for a short but violent while, May & June 1969. He was with us on FSB Currahee. We would do patrols off Currahee. He called the NVA the little people and he was not too thrilled about bumping into them as we would have to kill them, a prospect he did not relish despite him being the hardest core PSG we ever had. He was the ranking man on the Hamburger Hill adventure. He ordered Dick to secure the LZ and my squad leader, Lynn Spurgeon, to get on the left flank of C/2/17 Cav. As such, we were closest to the southern-most peak of the hill, where the Cav had troopers pinned down by an unknown number of NVA in bunkers. As it began to get late in the day, the Cav stayed on the adjacent peak, obviously hesitating to take the hill where they had troopers pinned down. Now picture this: 2 squads of Infantry with a troop of Cav (the equivalent of a full strength Infantry platoon). PSG Ambriz asked the Cav 1LT if he planned to take the hill. When the 1LT hesitated, PSG Ambriz did not, immediately turning to SGT Spurgeon and saying, "Spurgeon, take that hill." We did, finding SGT Robert Howard dead on the top. Short story is we killed 3 NVA in bunkers before getting the hell out of there. And that, brothers, is how a hard core squad of Infantry pulled a troop of Cavalry out of a hell of a jam. To add insult to injury, the Cav 1LT demanded that PSG Ambriz give him the AK 47's we took from the dead NVA. With CPT Apodaca's backing, PSG Ambriz basically told the LT to f*** off (of course not in those words).

Robert, as you see, PSG Ambriz is the man who gave the order that pulled the Cav out of the jam and secured your father's body. I expressed my condolences to Pepe's widow, two granddaughters and a brother in law. Pepe, may God bless your soul and take you into paradise. You served faithfully and always secured the mission while watching out for your men. Strike Force!

- Randy Hyde
(written to Robert Howard's son)

Pedro G Ambriz

Wade Stewart (Bravo 68-69): January 14, 2013

Wade Stewart died of a heart attack several days after back surgery. If you have information, stories, or photos, please send them for inclusion on this page.

Wade was a hell of a soldier; he was on line with us for 8 months as our Artillary FAO. He managed all the artillary, mortar, cobra, and puff fire at FSB Currahee... I certainly remember his management of all indirect fires on FSB Currahee on June 15, 1969 Just visited with Wade at the 2/502nd and 101st Airborne reunion in August in Nashville. All was well at that time.

- Randy Hyde

Sam Snyder (Bravo 1966-7): January 9, 2013

Still looking for information. Please send to if you have any.

Sam Snyder

William F Gunter, Jr (Bravo 1967): December 20, 2012

Bill graduated from Santiago High School, Garden Grove, CA in June 1966 and enlisted in the US Army in July 1966. After completing Infantry Training, he served with the 101st Airborne Division "Screaming Eagles", the 30th Military Police Battalion and from 1970 to his retirement in 1987 as a Special Agent with the United States Army Criminal Investigation Division. During his 21 years of military service Bill was assigned to several U.S. Army installations in addition to overseas tours in Vietnam, Korea, Japan and Germany. He received numerous awards and decorations, the most notable being Legion of Merit and a Purple Heart for wounds received in 1967 during a battle at Hill 414, Doc Pho, Vietnam. After retirement he returned to CID in 1988 as a Civilian Criminal Investigator for the Laguna Nigel Fraud Team, Laguna Nigel, CA and remained at that office until his retirement in 2008 as the Special Agent in Charge of the same unit renamed Pacific Fraud Field Office. At the time of his passing he was a longtime resident of Mission Viejo, CA having lived in that city since 1988.

Orange County Register Obituary

William Gunter's Ancestry.com Page

William F Gunter, Jr

Brien Richards (HHC Recondo 66-67): January 18, 2012

Brien was born Dec. 6, 1946, in Bellevue, Wash. Brien served his country in the U.S. Army and the Arizona National Guard. He was in law enforcement for many years at the Mohave County Sheriff's Office, the Kingman Police Department, the Wickenburg Police Department and the Navajo Army Depot.

Kingman Az newspaper obituary

Morris C Epps Jr (Charlie 67-68): December ??, 2011

EPPS MORRIS C. EPPS JR., U.S. Army, retired employee of Ohio Bell and AT&T; beloved husband of Rhuneta, loving father of Carmen, Sean, Siobhan and Shajmil; adored grandfather of Aaron and Deja; and great grandfather of Rachael.

Cleveland Plain Dealer newspaper obituary

Morris C Epps Jr

Tommy M. Jackson (Bravo 70-71): July 30, 2010

Tommy was born January 15, 1950, in Independence, Mo. He grew up in Kansas City and graduated from Northeast High School in 1968. He enjoyed fishing, hunting and coaching baseball. He was with Bravo Company from 1970-71. He was a member of the D.A.V., the VFW post #0449 in Blue Springs, and a life member of the Vietnam Veterans of America.

Tommy M Jackson

Gary E. Hillyer (HHC Recondo 66-67): July 19, 2010

(We are still looking for stories and photos - then and now - if you can help, please send to Contact Info below). The following quotes were taken from the Guestbook listed on his Obituary Page

It was an honor to serve in 1967 with Gary and a lot of other great recondos. I am so greatful he would call me on his way through Newhall CA and stop in to say hi. He was a blessing to be around, always made everyone around him a better person.

- Greg Nutter

Gary and I served together in the Nam back in 67, he was the 60 gunner in my squad, the best! He stopped at our house in Haverhill,Mass after we lost our son Evan in Afghanistan in 2003. He was one of the best in all he did.

- (unsigned)

I was fortunate to have served in Viet Nam along side Gary Hillyer.I met him once more after the war,and He will be forever missed by fellow "Recondo"s" and His loving family,peace to you Brother.

- Tom 'Beetle' Bailey

We shall meet again one day. We will tell stories and laugh and cry with each other. But until that day, I am humbled at the opportunity to fall into your position in the formation. I know that although you may not be physically present, your spirit is with us. I promise not to bring dishonor on your name, and I will try to fill the enormous shoes you have left behind. Save me a seat in Heaven, the Team will be along shortly

- Cal 'Preacher' Rollins

Norval "Butch" Paxton (Charlie 1968-69): June 27, 2010

Norval Hilton "Butch" Paxton Tulsa, Oklahoma Past away Sunday, June 27, 2010, at the age of 67. Preceded in death by his parents, Norval A. "Red" and Geneva F. Paxton of Sapulpa, Oklahoma. Survived by his son, Christopher, and wife Sharla, grandson Dylan and granddaughters Paige Leeann and Haylee Renee all of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Also survived by Sammie Paxton King of Tulsa and brother Michael Paxton of Sapulpa, two nephews, Brian Paxton of Tulsa and Adam Paxton of Cancun, Mexico. A graduate of Sapulpa High School and Northeastern State University. Retired engineer from Frisco Burlington Northern.

Butch served with Charlie Company 2/502 Infantry (Strike Force) of the 101st Airborne Division, Screaming Eagles, 1968-1969. Butch was a member of 2nd Platoon, "Fletcher's Fighters". He was known as the "Old Man". He served in I-Corps in South Vietnam He served with distinction and was awarded the Bronze Star, Army Commendation, Air Medal, and the Combat Infantryman's Badge. He was proud to serve his country with his own Band of Brothers who he remained in contact after all these many years.

Rest in Peace Brother Eagle. You may be gone, but you will never be forgotten.

Norval 'Butch' Paxton

Michael K "Mickey" Looney (HHC/Echo 1966-68): June 9, 2010

Michael K "Mickey" Looney, 64, died at home In Auburn, MA. He leaves his five siblings, many nieces, nephews, cousins and many close friends. He was born in Worcester, MA, and attended Auburn High School and Oceanside High School in CA before enlisting in the US Army

He was a member of the 2nd 502 Infantry BN, 101st Airborne, serving two tours in Viet Nam and earning two Purple Hearts and the CIB.

Following his military service, Mickey moved to California where he had a 20+ year career in the film and television industry. He held positions as Location Manager and Assistant Director for numerous movies and TV shows. He often entertained family and friends by putting them in move scenes as "extras" or introducing them to cast and crew. After retiring he returned to Auburn in 1995.

Mickey's greatest joy and love was spending time with his family and friends. This joy and love was returned ten-fold.

Michael K 'Mickey' Looney

Bob Stapleton (Charlie 66-67): January 31, 2010

On 31 January, 2010 Bob Stapleton passed away at the age of 63. For one year of Bob's life he was a member of the 1st platoon, Charlie Company, 2nd Battalion, 502nd Airborne Infantry, 1st Brigade, 101st Airborne Division. He served his country, his unit and the United States Army with honor. He was respected and well liked by his fellow airborne troopers. If you shared a three-man night ambush position with Bob during those hours when he was on watch, you knew he would be awake. He was a man that could be counted on "to do his job".

Bob went home and started his life with his wife Jan. He was blessed with two children, Bob and Lorie. As with his service in Viet Nam, he lived his life with honor and was a credit to his family. Bob never felt he was owed or entitled to something for his service to his country.

On 31 January, 2010 Bob became another causality of the Viet Nam war. He succumbed to several diseases which he developed during the final years of his life. The causes of his physical problems were, without a doubt, acquired during his tour of duty in Viet Nam. Unfortunately, the effects of what he and many others were exposed to would not be recognized or acknowledged until many years after the war. Sixty-three is too young to die. But to the very end, Bob loved the United States of America and was proud to have served with the 101st Airborne Division.

-Jim Henk
Fellow Platoon Member and Friend

Bob Stapleton

George "Doc" Kuznezov (Recondo 1967-8): December 20, 2009

George "Doc" Kuznezov was born to Mother Alexandra Kuznezov on May 24th, 1946 in Eisenerz, Austria, and passed away December 20th, 2009 in his home in Burdett, NY. George Kuznezov is survived by his wife of 31 years, Diane Kuznezov; children, Laila, Joshua (Audrey), Sasha, Katherine; grandsons, Bailey, Jacob, Liam, Nicholas; and sister, Mary (Rick).

George was an academic scholar honored at the age of 13 to attend Harvard Universities School for gifted young children. George declined that opportunity while pursuing his gifts as a talented springboard and platform diver. George won the New England league diving championship 3 consecutive years, setting several state and national records. Both academic and athletic talents led to George's opportunities to pursue both scholastic and athletic scholarships across the country. George eventually chose to attend Brown University on a full academic scholarship. George was drafted, but then was deferred as he was caring for his mother. Shortly after she passed, George volunteered and came to the Recondos as a medic.

"Doc" Kuznezov will always be known to his family, friends, and country as a well-respected, loved, and caring person. George found peace in his hobbies which included fly fishing, reading, writing, attending athletic events, and most of all spending time with his family. Many thanks to the Hospice of the Southern Tier for their loving care so generously given to George.

(Information from IthacaJournal.com )

George Kuznezov

Samuel Wane Roe (Charlie 1967-8): August 25,2009

Samuel "Sam" Roe 61 of Springfield, Mo. passed away Tuesday August 25, 2009 at Cox Hospital South in Springfield. Sam was born on August 23, 1948 in Atoka, OK. to John Alvin Roe and Nelma Inez "Karr" Roe. Sam served in the US ARMY for 16 years and in Vietnam and was a truck driver for JB Hunt for 15 years. Sam was married to Janice Maureen "Trent" on July 1, 1983.
More Information

I served with Roe in 1967-1968, we both were in Charlie Company. We fought and lost many friends in later part of 1967 , but 1968 was our worst year when the Battalion made a helicopter combat assault into the Infamous A SHAU Valley. To the west was the Ho Chi Minh Trail. We were in daily contact, some of the biggest battles took place there and mention of it's name still brings fear to us all. We lost our Company Commander and several NCO there, we were part of Albert W Fernandes 4th PLT.

Randolph Worrell

Samuel Wane Roe

David Kent Tillman (Delta 1971): July 8,2009

"Kent" served with Delta Company in 1971.
More Information

David Kent Tillman

Francis Terry "Butch" Bartush (Bravo 1970): April 25, 2009

We called him The Canadian Bacon. Butch was the kind of guy that would hump your claymore or 60 amo with no reservations if you had diarrhea and were weak, and didn't look for a favor. In April 1970 he received the Silver Star on Hill 714. In August 1970 he received The Purple Heart which put him on a hospital ship for 6 weeks.
After Vietnam he went to work for A & E Conrad Construction where he worked for 33 years. He and Linda were married for 37 years. They have 2 daughters and 4 grandsons. Butch liked to fish with his brothers on Lake Michigan and Lake of the Woods in Canada. He liked a good cigar and a cold beer.
Three years ago Butch acquired Multiple Myleoma from Agent Orange. He received a stem cell transplant in Minnesota but it didn't take. Then he went to Seattle, Washington for a double stem cell transplant. After the transplant they brought him back to the VA in Minnesota where he died. His birthday is Sept. 4, 1948, he was 60 years old. He was buried at Fort Smelling National Cemetery with full military honors.

- Roney Guilbeaux

Butch Bartush

SGM Macias (Alpha - 1966): Oct 11, 2008 (funeral date)

SGM (R) Macias was A/2-502 1SG in 1966 when he was awarded the Soldiers Medal for saving 7 Soldiers lives in Vietnam. SGM Macias was also a WWII and Korea Vet.

Brad "Elk" Elkins (Charlie 1967-8): October 3, 2008

Elk had been battling cancer for some time. Brad was one of those who greatly supported the O Deuce. He always wanted to stay in the background and didn't like any attention. I can now let those who attended the small reunion in DC (04) and those who attended the reunion in Atlanta (06) know this.
It was Brad who provided ALL the Sweatshirts, Polo Shirts, and Hats. It was one of the ways he could give back, to the men who meant so much to him.
He was a real O DEUCE TROOPER
He will be greatly missed.
Rest in Peace Brother Eagle

- Dale Joritz

Brad Elkins

Ernie "Terrible T" Taylor (Charlie 1968-9): September 10, 2008

T was one of us who went to Division LLRP's near the end of his first tour.
Ernie was able to come to Atlanta in 2006, where he was reunited with many of the men who were part of his life and memories of the 101st and the O Deuce.
Ernie had been suffering with Liver cancer and was to have received a transplant. The cancer spread and the transplant no longer became an option.
For those who knew T, his laughter and that crazy smile will long be remembered.
He may be gone, but never forgotten.
Rest in Peace Brother Eagle

- Dale Joritz

Ernie Taylor

Eric Sanders (HHC Recondo - 1967): July 17, 2008

Eric Sanders, 61, died July 17, 2008, at G.V. (Sonny) Montgomery VA Medical Center in Jackson. He was born in Brookhaven on March 1, 1947, to John Calvin (J.C.) Sanders and Mary Christine Sanders, both of Brookhaven.

Eric enlisted after graduating high school in 1965. He was serving his second tour in Viet Nam, as an RTO with the Recondos, when he was injured on October 26, 1967. After he was discharged from Walter Reed he was sent to the V.A. Medical center in Memphis, where he remained for close to a year. When he was released he came back home to Brookhaven. While recuperating he obtained a degree in Architectural Drafting through the G. I bill, and later took a job with the Sheriff's Department.

He was a member of Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Brookhaven and was affiliated with the VFW Post 4806, and was a member of the Elks.

Survivors are his parents; a daughter, Linda Wingfield, of Clinton; his sisters, Sherry S. Washington, of Brookhaven, and Ann Sanders Carr, of Starkville; and his two grandchildren.

Eric Sanders

Frank Wohlfahrt (HHC 1967-8): July 2008

Frank Wohlfahrt passed away in July from pancreatic cancer. He is survived by Anna Wohlfahrt, his wife of 49 years. Those in Altanta will remember Frank and Anna helped at the registration table.

Frank Wohlfahrt

Larry Aglin (Bravo 1965-6): December 1, 2007

Larry Aglin passed away due to complications from his illness caused by Agent Orange.

Tom Lakomia (Bravo 1967-8): August 22, 2007

Tom Lakomia was a former Platoon Leader. Tom was on his way in his boat to the Bahamas when he was struck by another craft killing him.

Tom is buried at Arlington and passed August 22, 2007. He retired a LTC in the USAR and continued Government service as civilian until (I believe 03) retiring and moving to Florida.
Tom was buried will full honors in his Blues. He loved the 101st thru and thru!

- Scott Gunnell, Command Sergeant Major (ret)

Tom Lakomia

Terry Stanosheck (HHC - Recondo 1967-8): April 22, 2004

Terry Stanosheck was a machine gunner with the Recondos.

He was looking forward to the 2004 Melbourne Reunion, and died one day before the reunion started.

In the years prior to his death he had nursed his wife through a terminal illness.

Terry Stanosheck

Raymond Ortega Jr (Charlie 1968-70): March 5, 2003

From what I know of him, he served four tours in Vietnam and earned himself The Silver Star, Purple Heart, and Bronze Star with an Oak Leaf cluster and a V, as well as, other medals. He passed away March 5, 2003 and was born May 12 1948. He was married to Donna Streeter (Ortega) and had three children: Raymond III, Crystal (myself), and Joey. He also had four grandchildren. He was from San Jose, California. He passed away from years of dealing with Multiple Sclerosis at the VA Nursing Home in Temple, Texas.

- Crystal Ortega (daughter)

Raymond Ortega Jr

Norman C. "Mac" McGirr (Delta 1971): January 17, 1998

Norman C. "Mac" McGirr Sr. died Jan. 17, 1998, at the age of 48, after a long battle with cancer.

He was a life resident of Barberton, a U. S. Army veteran of the Vietnam era, employed by Gason SDI, and a member of Cliff Hockley V.F.W. and St. Augustine Catholic Church.

Surviving are wife, Maude; sons and daughters-in-law, Staff SSG Ron and Karen of Fayetteville, N. C., Norman Jr. and Michelle of Barberton; daughter, Tami of Barberton; granddaughter, Megan; parents, Robert and Betty Raider of West Virginia; sister, Launa Mead of Utah; uncles, Ben (Deloris) Wathey of Norton, Earnest Wathey of Akron; and many special friends.

Mac McGirr

Tony Paramo (Delta 1971): January 1981

Tony Paramo was from Oxnard, CA. He was born Dec. 9th, 1950, he died in a car accident at age 30.

Tony was a friend to all and had a great sense of humor, he was willing to share whatever he had. He even offered to share Menudo that his family had sent him from the states.

Tony Paramo

Abel Dehoyos (Delta 1971): November 27, 1973

Abel Dehoyos was from Houston, TX. He was born Dec. 26, 1949 and died at the age of 23, after returning safely from Viet Nam

Abel was proud to be a Texan and a member of the 2nd 502.

Abel Dehoyos

Michael Asap (Recondo 1968): September 8, 1970

Michael Asap was KIA on a second Viet Nam tour, with the 173rd Airborne. His memorial is located here because he died after his tour with the 2/502.

Michael and I were both from the East New York section of Brooklyn, so it was a very happy and sad day that our paths crossed, ten thousand miles from home in the infamous A Shau Valley, Vietnam, during TET 1968. Our Unit had made a helicopter assault back into the valley.
Michael was with the 2/502 Recondos, and that day on that hill we both embraced each other like true brothers. For a brief moment we escaped from the horrors of war. I have a photo taken that day of Michael carrying the M 60 machine gun. I was a short timer and he said, "Stop by and let my folks know I'm OK", when you get back to the world.
Several years later I learned that Michael went back to Vietnam with the 173rd ABN Bde and was killed in action in September of 1970. Michael, I recall those school days of our youth, JHS 64, and the guys from the block. Vietnam got all of us and many never returned. May the Almighty smile upon you, You are not forgotten.

Randolph Worrell -C Co.

Michael Asap

CONTACT INFO

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(updated October 25, 2014)

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