Bobby Ray Alexander

United States Marine Corps
13 February 1947 - 16 November 1967
Decatur, Alabama
Panel 29E Line 104


Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Bobby Ray Alexander

09 Mar 2008

This memorial honors Bobby Ray Alexander of Summerville, Alabama. He was the Marines finest. First wounded in combat in the summer of 1967, he later was killed by mortar fire from the rear echelon of Kilo Company 3rd Marine Battalion while on a seek and destroy mission between Con Thien and the Alpha 3 position on the DMZ in Vietnam approximately in November of 1967.

He was the first person to befriend me when I arrived at the "Fish Bowl" between the Rock Pile and Razor Back Mountains in October of 1967. I was reinforcements for the battle he had fought and was wounded. He was my squad leader and later recommended me for squad leader. As a unit we were shipped out to Con Thien where we took the bridge below Con Thien away from the NVA. Later that night we were bombed by our own jets who had not gotten the word that the bridge had been retaken. We survived this, but later while on an operation from this position we were hit by our own mortar fire. Al (nickname for Bobby Ray) was mortally wounded. I ran to him. The Docs [Navy Corpsmen] were working on his intestines trying to cut off bleeders. His arm was severed at the shoulder and laying on his chest. To his family, I want them to know, that he was in total shock and felt no pain. NO PAIN. I kept screaming at him to remember he was getting married when he returned to Alabama in a month. His last words to me was to say his girl friend had made her wedding dress by hand. He kept her framed picture in his pack and would set it up at each fox hole.

We got him on a chopper alive, but after being resucitated twice at a field hospital in Dong Ha he died.

I loved Al Alexander. He spoke of his girl and his family constantly. He respected his father, a farmer, greatly and talked constantly of how hard he worked.

I am sorry he died. He deserved to live so much more than me.

J. P. Land
Hueytown, Alabama

From a comrade in arms,
James Philip Land
3393 Tanglewood Drive, Rock Hill, S C 29732

A Note from The Virtual Wall

Mr. Land's recollection of the events is accurate according to the 3/3 Marines' Command Chronology for November 1967. The artillery outpost at Con Thien (Hill 158) was connected to Highway QL-9 by Route 561. Rte 561 crossed a small stream at the "C-2 Bridge" near the destroyed hamlet of Thon Bai An, 5 kilometers southwest of Con Thien. 3/3 fought an engagement there on 01 Nov 1967, losing ten men while destroying a reinforced NVA platoon. The battalion continued to conduct patrols to the southwest of Con Thien for the next several weeks.

On 16 November a Kilo Company patrol established a night position northwest of the bridge. Harrassment and Interdiction (H&I) fires were a normal occurrence, intended to disrupt enemy efforts to creep up on NDPs under cover of darkness. On this occasion 7 rounds of 81mm mortar fire hit within the Kilo 3/3 perimeter, killing one Marine - Pfc Leonard E. Fritz of Superior, Arizona - and seriously wounding 14 others. Cpl Bobby R. Alexander was one of the 14; he died after being evacuated to the Dong Ha medical station.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a comrade in arms,
James Philip Land
3393 Tanglewood Drive, Rock Hill, S C 29732

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 09 Mar 2008
Last updated 03/18/2008