Gerald Ernest CorlettCorporal
D CO, 3RD BN, 22ND INFANTRY, 25 INF DIV
Army of the United States
27 September 1948 - 16 March 1970
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The database page for Gerald Ernest Corlett
PFC Gerald E. Corlett lost his life in a fierce engagement on a mountain named Nui Ba Den, in Tay Ninh Province, Republic of Vietnam. His unit, 3/22 of the 25th Infantry Division, was sent on a mission to link up with an armored infantry unit of the 4/23, at the base of the mountain. The mechanized unit of the 4/23 had an armored personnel carrier that had come under fire and the troops needed reinforcements.
Delta Company was inserted on Nui Cau the small mountain alongside Nui Ba Den on 15 March 1970, near dusk. On the morning of 16 March the first, second, and third platoons started down into the saddle area between the mountains on their mission to link up. According to 1LT Lee Mayo, the company commander, it was slow going as the terrain was granite boulders, large rocks, caves, and was infested with the enemy. At approximately 1200 hours Delta Company began taking intense rifle fire from snipers on higher ground. The enemy fired B-40 rocket propelled grenades at the American positions. There was small arms fire exhanged between the two forces. Delta Company was pinned down throughout the remainder of the day and it was not until darkness before they were able to move out and continue down the mountainside and link up with the 4/23 unit.
Two lieutenants were killed that day along with PFC Corlett. LT Vincent Duffy commanded 3rd platoon and LT John Ingrum was with 1LT Mayo in the command post. All three soldiers were reportedly struck by sniper fire. The company also sustained many wounded soldiers.
PFC Corlett was promoted posthumously to the rank of Corporal. He was awarded the Bronze Star for Meritorious Service in Vietnam, the Army Commendation Medal with First Oak Leaf Cluster for heroism, the Purple Heart, and the Good Conduct Medal. Prior to death, PFC Corlett had been awarded the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge, Sharpshooter Badge with machine gun bar, and the Marksman Badge with rifle and automatic rifle bars.
He was a 1966 graduate of Clay Senior High School in Oregon, Ohio.
From a researcher and biographer,
My brother Jerry would have found the picture of him eating the lizard instead of his formal picture hilarious.
His nickname was "Tramp" because he didn't always dress up.
It's a great picture and a great memory.
From his brother,
Time, something there is so much of but so little given to each of us. If time were all ours, we would spend each and every moment loving you. If somehow we are still alive after a thousand years, it would because of our knowing and loving you. You ask how long this love will really last after you are gone? Step out side and listen for the sun, when you hear it move over the hills and through the trees, then know that love is gone. Look up into a cloudless sky, Look for the wind. When you see it, you'll never knew we left. Stop time if you can and if you can't, you can't prevent our loving and missing you.
How long, you ask? Watch for the wind and wait. May serenity circle you on silent wings, and may you catch our love on the whisper of the wind.
To my brother, I will never forget.
From a brother-in-arms, 1/27 Wolfhounds, 25th Inf, 1970,
I served with Jerry, and remember him as a very fun-loving and happy guy. Always smiling, it seemed like even in the tough time we were in. I wish I had taken more pictures of him, and others. He made life "In Country" more bearable.
From a friend,
A Note from The Virtual WallThe 25th Infantry Division's Operational Report for Feb-Apr 1970 contains the following entries:
Although the exerpt does not mention D Company, 3rd Bn, 22nd Infantry, other reliable information does indicate that unit was involved in the fighting as described above. Five US soldiers were killed in the two-day action:
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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 14 Jan 2008
Last updated 02/01/2008