191st AHC Association Completes the Call for Photos

191st ACH Association reunion in Orlando, Fla. in 2012. Photo by Ed McKee.

191st ACH Association reunion in Orlando, Fla. in 2012. Photo by Ed McKee.

The gentlemen of 191st Assault Helicopter Company Association are hesitant to take credit for an enormous accomplishment; each man will say it was one of his buddies who really got the job done. But of course that’s the nature of a group like this, and that’s the nature of such a project.

The members of the 191st found at least one photograph for each of the 44 men who died in Vietnam while serving in the 191st AHC, effectively completing their part of VVMF’s Faces Never Forgotten call for photos campaign.

They began collecting photos just before Memorial Day. When they first visited the Virtual Wall, only four of the 44 photos had been uploaded. 191st member Ed McKee said a phone conversation with 191st President Harold Stitt kicked off the project.

“Harold and I have different recollections of that conversation,” McKee said, “but I distinctly remember that it was Harold who told me about how the 191st AHC Association needed to ‘get off our lazy butts and help the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund out on that project, because if we didn’t do this now, we probably never would.’”

Stitt remembers it differently. “Ed called me and asked what I thought and the following day I opened my email and was overwhelmed; he already had a running start,” Stitt said. “Ed McKee spends day and night doing these things; he was the total drive behind it.”

Clearly the project had a lot of support. And indeed such an undertaking needs a lot of enthusiasm. Stitt said within the organization there were 50 to 75 people reliably helping to find photos. These volunteers reached out to family members, visited hometowns and high schools. They often called high school principles to track down photos.

“I can’t say enough good things about the response that we received from the members of the 191st AHC Association who really got behind this project and spent countless hours combing through their attics and garages looking for pictures or running internet searches trying to locate the family, friends, or acquaintances of the men,” McKee said.

They also utilized their wide network of supporters through their Facebook page and email list. If they were unsure if they had the correct photo, they would post it to the Facebook page for verification. Stitt said all in all, hundreds of people helped in the effort.

“People just bent over backwards to help us locate a relative or someone else who may have had a picture of those men,” McKee said.

The last 20 percent of the project required 80 percent of the effort, McKee said. But, “whenever me and the rest of Harold’s ‘minions’ who were working on this project were getting ready to give up, because of Harold’s leadership and encouragement, we were persuaded to stay with it a little longer and invariably something would turn up that allowed us to keep moving forward,” McKee said.

Not only did the members of the 191st want to find the photos, they also wanted to record the medals that each man had received. In this they also succeeded. Now these men are working to find higher quality photos for display in the Education Center at The Wall.

“This mission is so important,” said VVMF Founder and President Jan Scruggs. “The photos teach people that these were real people, with hopes and dreams, not just names on a wall. Thank you so much to the men of the 191st AHC Association; because of your effort, the faces of these men will never be forgotten.”

191st ASSAULT HELICOPTER COMPANY HONOR ROLL

“We all gave some, but they gave all”

  1. Jack L. Dodson, 1Lt Age 29 Kimberly ID
  2. Norman R. Kidd, CPT Age 30 Montrose CA
  3. Sharel E. Bales, 1Lt Age 30 Berthoud CO
  4. David C. Hall, 1Lt Age 25 Hanson MA
  5. Peter S. Martinez, SP4 Age 25 Chicago IL
  6. Louis C. Muser, SGT Age 20 Hoboken NJ
  7. Richard L. Scaduto, SSG Age 20 New Castle PA
  8. Joseph L. Whitaker, SP4 Age 19 Ontario OR
  9. Tommy G. Sandefur, CWO Age 31 Tulsa OK
  10. Harold S. Wood Jr., SP5 Age 25 Lewisburg KY
  11. Jeffery J. Yarger, WO Age 22 Edgerton OH
  12. Gerald D. Aiton, PFC Age 21 Centralia WA
  13. Richard A. Weske, SP4 Age 21 Camarillo CA
  14. Dennis O. Akers, SP4 Age 21 Louisville KY
  15. Ricardo R. Tejano, WO Age 24 Spokane WA
  16. Norman M. Turone, WO Age 19 Chicago IL
  17. Richard L. Vines, SP5 Age 19 Bakersfield CA
  18. Terry R. Jens, WO Age 21 Seattle WA
  19. Arnold W. Luke, CPT Age 26 Los Angeles CA
  20. Arturo D. Montion, SP4 Age 21 Stockton CA
  21. Gerald A. Wilson, SP5 Age 23 Hilton NY
  22. David C. Burch, CPT Age 24 Faison NC
  23. Ronald M. Cederlund, WO Age 21 Chicago IL
  24. Paul R. Frazier, SGT Age 19 Milwaukee WI
  25. Glenn R. Lawfield, SP4 Age 18 Detroit MI
  26. Morris J. Ross, WO Age 26 Tacoma WA
  27. Dennis S. Coker, 1Lt Age 23 Monroe GA
  28. Carl S. Douglas, SP4 Age 19 Sanford NC
  29. Robert L. Heinmiller, SP5 Age 20 Fresno CA
  30. George R. Lovellette, SP4 Age 20 Urbana IL
  31. John A. Petric, MAJ Age 31 Cleveland OH
  32. Carl L. Radtke, 1Lt Age 26 Newhall CA
  33. George A. Dasho Jr., SP4 Age 18 Cicero IL
  34. Ralph C. Embrey, CWO Age 23 Virgil KS
  35. Stephen H. Haight, SP4 Age 20 Cazenovia NY
  36. Terry L. Henry, WO Age 21 Clarion PA
  37. Kris M. Perdomo, SP4 Age 21 Newport Beach CA
  38. Timothy C. McCarthy, SP4 Age 19 Biloxi MS
  39. Kenneth L. Brown, SP4 Age 20 Fort Scott KS
  40. Douglas J. Campbell, WO Age 20 Orlando FL
  41. Oscar Maloney, SP5 Age 25 Tuba City AZ
  42. John T. Orrico, CWO Age 22 Ridgefield CT
  43. Jaime Restrepo, SFC Age 36 Columbus GA
  44. Thomas P. Harvey, SGT Age 24 Lashmeet WV