US Stamps

By John M. Hotchner

Identifying the servicemen listed on the Vietnam War Memorial stamp

November 19, 2015 01:30 PM

  • This image, emblematic of grieving at the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C., was used for one of the 1980s Celebrate the Century stamps. The memorial was dedicated in 1982. Names from the Wall are visible on the stamp.

By John M. Hotchner

After watching a news piece in 2015 about the 50th anniversary of the arrival of the first United States Marine Corps combat troops in Vietnam, Linn’s reader Paul Schroeder wanted to know if additional information had ever been published about the names that are visible on the 33¢ Vietnam Veterans Memorial stamp (Scott 3190g).

The stamp was issued Jan. 12, 2000, as part of the Celebrate the Century set saluting the decade of the 1980s.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., was dedicated Nov. 13, 1982. A 20¢ stamp honoring the memorial was issued Nov. 10, 1984 (Scott 2109).

This memorial, often called the Wall, includes the names of the more than 58,000 servicemen and servicewomen who gave their lives in the Vietnam War or are listed as missing in action.

The stamp clearly shows several of these names, all from panel 33. Schroeder wanted to know if there was a list for stamp collectors giving their ranks, branches of service and dates of death.

I couldn’t find such a list, so I sat down with my computer and magnifier to try to make one. I also added the birth dates and home states. With the aid of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund, here is the list:

SP4 Paul Charles Rudy, Army, Sept. 17, 1947 to Feb. 2, 1969, New York; PFC Theodore M. Rusch, Marines, Nov. 15, 1949 to Feb. 3, 1969, Alabama; PFC Ronald Sabin, Marines, July 30, 1948 to Feb. 2, 1969, Indiana; 2LT Kenneth H. Shelleman, Marines, Aug. 24, 1946, to Feb. 2, 1969, West Virginia; PFC Leonard D. Smith Jr., Marines, Dec. 14, 1948, to Feb. 2, 1969, Mississippi;

SSGT James B. White, March 30, 1942, to Feb. 2, 1969, Pennsylvania; PFC Ray M. Williams, Marines, July 23, 1947, to Feb. 2, 1969, Louisiana; SP4 Jerry R. Davis, Army, May 23, 1947, to Feb. 2, 1969, Mississippi; PFC Ronald G. Baughman, Marines, April 20, 1949, to Feb. 3, 1969, Indiana; PFC Thomas Clark, March 10, 1948, to Feb. 3, 1969, Georgia;

LCPL Donald C. Berry, Marines, Jan. 5, 1943, to Feb. 3, 1969, Kentucky; SP4 Otis J. Darden, Army, Feb. 3, 1948, to Feb. 3, 1969, California; PFC Alvin J. Derrick, Marines, Feb. 10, 1949, to Feb. 3, 1969, South Carolina; SGT Gordon D. Gardner, Army, March 18, 1949, to Feb. 3, 1969, California; SP4 Gary Lee Glear, Army, July 19, 1948, to Feb. 3, 1969, Missouri;

PFC Dennis J. Gulla, Marines, March 16, 1949, to Feb. 3, 1969, Michigan; PFC Leslie A. Jersted, Marines, Aug. 4, 1948, to Feb. 3, 1969, Tennessee; SP4 Lester Johnson Jr., Army, April 6, 1947, to Feb. 3, 1969, New Jersey; PFC William R. Larkin, Marines, Jan. 30, 1949, to Feb. 3, 1969, New York; PFC Michael S. Massone, Marines, March 17, 1948, to Feb. 3, 1969, California;

PFC Rickey C. McCoy, Marines, Aug. 31, 1950, to Feb. 3, 1969, Michigan; SGT John R. Rebits, Army, June 8, 1947, to Feb. 3, 1969, Michigan; SP4 James E. Skipper, Army, Oct. 3, 1948, to Feb. 3, 1969, Georgia; SP4 John T. Walls, Army, March 22, 1945, to Feb. 3, 1969, Georgia; PFC David R. Wicker, Army, Jan. 3, 1947, to Feb. 3, 1969, Missouri;

PFC David. R. Augustus, Army, March 4, 1948, to Feb. 4, 1969, Maryland; SP4 Benjamin H. Binegar Jr., Army, Aug. 8, 1943, to Feb. 4, 1969, Illinois; SSGT James D. Camp, Army, Feb. 10, 1947, to Feb. 4, 1969, Iowa; SP4 Robert L. Eaton, Army, Aug. 10, 1948, to Feb. 4, 1969, Nebraska; and LCPL Otis Green, July 26, 1949, to Feb. 4, 1969, Marines, N.Y.