Wisconsin’s 37

The Lives of Those Missing in Action in the Vietnam War


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About the Book

The signing of the Paris Peace Accords in 1973 signified the end of the Vietnam War. American personnel returned home and the 591 American prisoners held captive in North Vietnam were released. Still, 2,646 individuals did not come home. Thirty-seven of those missing in action were from Wisconsin. Their names appear on the largest object—a motorcycle (now part of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Collection)—ever left at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Using the recollections of the soldiers’ families, friends and fellow servicemen, the author tells the story of each man’s life.

About the Author(s)

Erin Miller holds an M.S. in communication sciences and disorders from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. She currently works as a speech-language pathologist.

John B. Sharpless a professor of American history at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, has taught advanced undergraduate seminars in military history and Wisconsin history.

Bibliographic Details

Erin Miller with John B. Sharpless

Foreword by Major General Don Logeman, U.S. Air Force (Ret.)

Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 251
Bibliographic Info: 73 photos, appendix, glossary, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2018
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7200-7
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3161-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
Foreword by Major General Don Logeman, U.S. Air Force (Ret.) 1
Preface by Erin Miller 3
Introduction by Professor John B. Sharpless 5
A Note on Terms 10

Captain Walter Frank Draeger, Jr. 11
Commander James David La Haye 19
Captain Robert Ira Bush 25
Commander William Tamm Arnold 30
Captain Roy Robert Kubley 35
Private First Class Duwayne Marshall Soulier 42
Sergeant James Neil Tycz 46
Lance Corporal Merlin Raye Allen 53
Staff Sergeant James Lee VanBendegom 58
Lieutenant Michael John Allard 63
Lieutenant Colonel Donald William Downing 68
Captain Harold John Moe 73

Gunnery Sergeant Richard William Fischer 80
Captain Paul Stuart Gee 86
Colonel Robert Frederick Wilke 90
Major James Alan Ketterer 96
Chief Petty Officer Donald Louis Gallagher 101
Lieutenant (Junior Grade) Roy Arthur Huss 106
Petty Officer Second Class John Francis Hartzheim 110
Private First Class Thomas Joseph Blackman 114
Lance Corporal Raymond Thomas Heyne 119
Sergeant Paul Reid Frazier 125
Captain Paul David Derby 129

Captain Edwin James Fickler 134
Sergeant William Anthony Evans 139
Major Richard Lee Bowers 141
Chief Warrant Officer William Cooper Pierson III 146
Major Norman Karl Billipp 150
Aviation Boatswain Mate Third Class William Dale Gorsuch 158
Chief Master Sergeant Charles Richard Fellenz 162
Major Dale Wayne Richardson 167
Specialist Fourth Class Peter Alden Schmidt 172
Specialist Fifth Class Randolph Leroy Johnson 176
Specialist Fifth Class Richard Jay Hentz 180
Warrant Officer Albert Raymond Trudeau 185
Captain David Leverett Leet 191
Staff Sergeant Todd Michael Melton 197

Epilogue 203
Appendix: Awards and Commendations 205
Glossary 208
Chapter Notes 211
Bibliography 220
Index 237

Book Reviews & Awards

“An extraordinary and valued addition to the growing library of Vietnam War Histories and Memoirs… Very highly recommended for both community and academic library collections.”—Reviewer’s Choice