LYNCH, Richard E - Vietnam - Montgomery InGenWeb Project

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LYNCH, Richard E - Vietnam

Source: Crawfordsville Journal Review 8 October 1965

A Crawfordsville soldier scheduled to be discharged from the service in about two months has been killed in action while serving with the US Army in VietNam. The War Department notified relatives here Saturday that Pfc Richard (Dick) Lynch died Friday from wounds caused by hand grenade fragments and small arms fire, presumably sustained the same day of his death. Telegrams from US officials in Washington said the 24-year-old soldier a member of the 1st Infantry Division was fatally wounded "during hostile action in VIet Nam."

The telegrams, sent to Mr. and Mrs. Emory Lynch of 44 Center Lane, parents of the victim and Mrs. Ann Lynch, his wife of less than a year, did not elaborate on circumstances surrounding the death of the young serviceman. However, in a letter received by his parents five days before his death he wrote that his unit had been on "search and destroy" patrols.

One wire service said Pfc Lynch was killed when his unit was ambushed by Viet Cong guerillas but this could not be confirmed. There was no mention of an ambush in the terse telegram to his parents.

Pfc. Lynch, who was drafted into the service Jan 22, 1964 had been in Viet Nam since last July 12. He had been in the Cam Ranh Bay area until about a week prior to his last letter home. In that letter he told of being sent to Saigon, the captal of South Viet Nam and the heart of the area where US Troops have been engaged in major fighting with the Viet Cong in recent weeks.

Pfc. Lynch, who was last hom eon leave late last spring received his basic training at Ft. Knox, Ky. He was later stationed at Ft. Riley, Kan before being shipped overseas.

Richard Emory Lynch was born June 17, 1941 in Crawfordsville son of EMory and Lois Kingery Lynch. He was married Dec 2 to Ann Jones, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Harry Jones of Linden. The soldier's wife has made her home with her parents at Linden since he went overseas.

Lynch was graduated from Crawfordsville High School in1959 and attended Bailey Technical School in St. Louis. Prior to entering the service, he was employed for two and one half years by Edwards Motor Sales here.

He attended the Church of Christ.

Survivors in addition to his parents and wife include a brother, Robert who is 21, and resides with his parents, paternal grandmother, Mrs. Jennie Lynch of Crawfordsville; maternal grandmother, Mrs. Edna Kingerty of Crawfordsville and three aunts and four uncles.

In the telegram to Pfc. Lynch's wife, the War Department said she will be notified when the body is to be shipped back to the US for funeral services and burial.

Pfc. Lynch is Montgomery County's FIRST CAUALTY of the Viet Nam War.

The body is to be brought to the Bright Funeral Home here. Arrangements are incomplete.

... by Jack Hess

Montgomery County's first casualty of the Viet Nam War was buried Friday in one of the city's largest funerals. Ironically, it was also a day of demonstrations, elsewhere as the US' policy in the Viet Nam issue was protested on a number of college campuses around the country.

But there were no protest marches on this warm sunny afternoon in Crawfordsville also a college town ... only sadness.

Pfc. Richard E. (Dick) Lynch was laid to rest in Oak Hill Cemetery one week to the day after he gave his life fo rhis country while fighting to check an onrushing Communist tide that threatens to engulf Southeastern Asia. More than 300 young and old alike crowded into Bright's Funeral Home at the funeral hour. Nearly 500 had called at the funeral home previously to pay their respects to the fallen 24-year-old soldier, a spokesman said.

The funeral procession that wound its way through Oak Hill was described by an employee of the cemetery as one of the biggest he'd ever seen there.

Rev. Willis Syphers of Linden who officiated at the young soldier's wedding less than a year ago, spoke of man's strange design" during the funeral services. "Man has not yet learned the full meaning of brotherhood," Rev. Syphers said,' Because man still ha sconflict.

Richard was called to make the supreme sacrifice during on e of those conflicts, but he did not die in vain ... he died so that some day man will learn the real meaning of brotherhood and love.

Rev. Syphers' words echoed those of Rev. Clyde Peck who spoke earlier. "We must recognize this great sacrifice ... recognize that in death he died for us all so that freedom might live ... and that some great day we might know that freedom for which we have so longed, "Rev. Peck implored.

An American flag draped the closed casket. Scores of floral pieces surrounded the casket and lined the sides of the chapel. Atop the casket stood a large picture of the young soldier. Another picture, showing him and his pretty bride at their wedding barely 10 months ago was beside the large colored portrait. The body of Pfc. Lynch, first county serviceman to die on a battlefield in nearly a decade and a half was flown to Crawfoardsville from San Francisco Wednesday. It was escorted by Spec 5 James T. Brade of New York City. Brady, a black band around one arm, remained through the final rites. Also present for services Friday was Maj. J.W. Johnson, survivors assistance officer who is attached to the Reserve Officers Training Corps at Purdue University.

Byron Cox Post 72 of the American Legion conducted military rites at the graveside. Six members, Walter Remley, A.L. Browning, Gerald Fuller, Ed Dickerson, Ben Stout and Harold Froedge, served as pall bearers.

Serving on the color guard were: Don Anglin, Loren Rutledge, Jesse Fine and R. Lookabill.

Remley and Browning, both former commanders of Post 72, folded the flag which draped the silver -colored casket. The folded flag was handed to Spec 5 Brady. Brady then presented it to the widow, the former Ann Jones of Linden, and spoke a few words audible only to those in the immediate family. Then the choked sounds of Taps and echo were heard with Raymond Abbott, a close friend of the family, serving as buglar.

Many women sburied their faces in handkerchiefs and sobbed. Men wept openly. Many were childhood friends of the dead soldier. After words of comfort from the two ministers, the family slowly left. Both the mother and widow had to be assisted from the graveside. The young widow, sobbing and her head buried in her father's arm, left clutching the folded flag closely to her heart. -- typed by kbz crying the whole way - God bless you Pfc Dick Lynch

Source: Taken from a collection of obituaries originally collected and owned by Fauniel Hershberger of Fountain County, Indiana, now housed by the Crawfordsville District Public Library.

Pfc. Richard E. (Dick) Lunch, 24, of Crawfordsville, and husband of the former Ann Jones of Linden, has been killed in the fighting in Viet Nam. Word of his death Friday from wounds caused by hand grenade fragments and small arms fire, presumably, suffered that day, was received from Army officials in Washington. The soldier, who was scheduled for discharge in about two months, was with the 1st Infantry Division. He was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Emory Lynch, who received a letter from him five days before his death, stating that his unit had been on "search and destroy" patrols. He was drafted Jan. 22, 1964 and had been in Viet Nam since July 12. He had been in the Cam Rahn Bay area until about a week before his last letter home. In that letter he told of being sent to Saigon in the heart of the area where U. S. troops have engaged in major fighting with the Viet Cong. Pfc. Lynch received basic training at Ft. Knox, Ky., and was stationed later at Ft. Riley, Kan., before he was sent overseas. He was born in Crawfordsville, graduated from high school there in 1959 and attended Bailey Technical School in St. Louis. He was married last Dec. 2. Surviving with the widow who has lived here with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Harry Jones, since her husband was sent overseas. Pfc. Lynch is the first Montgomery County casualty of the View Nam War.  --Typed by Debby Masterson.

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