Bryant Brayboy, JrSergeant First Class
B CO, 1ST BN, 503RD INF RGT, 173 ABN BDE
Army of the United States
04 November 1932 - 08 November 1965
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The database page for Bryant Brayboy, Jr
The photo and following article is taken from The Philadelphia Daily News, special supplement entitled 'SIX HUNDRED AND THIRTY,' October 26, 1987. The special supplement was issued in conjunction with the dedication of the Philadelphia Viet Nam Memorial.
From a native Philadelphian and Marine,
My name is SP/4 Jose A. Ortiz. I had the honor to serve with Sergeant Brayboy. We were stationed with the 101st Airborne Division at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, in 1963-65.
He was my Platoon Sergeant. He was a fine man, a proud man, and a fair man. He would help anyone if they requested it. I was First Gunner, Weapons Squad, and he taught me well on the use of the M60.
I was transferred to the 1st Brigade of the 502nd in the spring of 1965. We wound up in Viet Nam that summer. I lost contact with him at that time.
I didn't find out til May 03, 2006 that he had passed on. At the age of 61, I found myself shedding tears for a comrade-in-arms who had left us so many, many years before. The world lost a good man on that autumn day back in 1965.
A I R B O R N E ! Sergeant Brayboy
Jose A. Ortiz
A Note from The Virtual WallOn 05 Nov 1965 the 173rd Airborne Brigade initiated "Operation Hump", a reconnaissance in force in an area about 15 miles north of Bien Hoa. The 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, deployed south of the Dong Nai River while the 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry, conducted a helicopter assault on a LZ northwest of the Dong Nai and Song Be Rivers. Little contact was made through 07 Nov, when B and C Companies settled into a night defensive position southeast of Hill 65, a triple-canopy jungled hill.
At about 0600 on the morning of 08 Nov, C Company began a move northwest toward Hill 65, while B Company moved northeast toward Hill 78. Shortly before 0800, C Company was engaged by a sizable enemy force well dug in to the southern face of Hill 65. At 0845, B Company was directed to wheel in place and proceed toward Hill 65 with the intention of relieving C Company.
B Company reached the foot of Hill 65 at about 0930 and moved up the hill. Three things soon became obvious:
Meanwhile, the NVA commander realized that his best chance was to close with the US soldiers so that the 173rd's air and artillery fire could not be effectively employed. He attempted to out-flank the US position atop the hill from both the east and the southwest, moving his troops closer to the Americans. The result was shoulder-to-shoulder attacks up the hillside, hand-to-hand fighting, and isolation of parts of B and C Companies ... but the Americans held against two such attacks. Although the fighting continued after the second massed attack, it reduced in intensity as the NVA commander again attempted to disengage and withdraw. By late afternoon it seemed that contact had been broken off by the enemy, allowing the two companies to prepare a night defensive position while collecting their dead and wounded in the center of the position. Although a few of the most seriously wounded were extracted by USAF helicopters using Stokes litters, the triple-canopy jungle prevented the majority from being evacuated until the morning of 09 Nov.
The result of the battle was heavy losses on both sides - 50 Skytroopers dead, many more wounded, and 403 dead NVA troops.
Sergeant First Class Brayboy was one of the 50 dead Americans.
The point-of-contact for this memorial is|
a native Philadelphian & Viet Nam Veteran,
5 Jan 2003
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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Last updated 05/08/2006