Richard Lee Crites

Private First Class
Army of the United States
14 October 1944 - 17 October 1967
Cleveland, Ohio
Panel 28E Line 021

Combat Infantry

Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Richard Lee Crites

29 Nov 2001


You were only with us for a short time but you are loved and will be remembered forever. We miss you.

Your Brothers and Sisters

Clarence (Bo), Eugene (Manny), Evelyn and Mildred

A Note from The Virtual Wall

The 2nd Battalion, 28th Infantry had been operating west of the village of Chon Thanh since October 8th, conducting "search and destroy" operations in an area known to be occupied by large Viet Cong forces. Only four of the battalion's five companies (HHC, A, B, and D) were involved; C Company was providing fire base security for the supporting artillery unit.

On the morning of 17 October, Alpha Company led out from the night defensive perimeter on a recon-in-force with the battalion command group in company and Delta Company in trail. Around noontime Alpha was engaged by a very much larger enemy force and Delta Company deployed in support. By the time the remaining forces could deploy in support of the engaged troops, the battalion command group and both Alpha and Delta had sustained very heavy casualties. Charlie Company was air-lifted in to assist Bravo and HHC and by late afternoon the area was secured as the VC forces withdrew.

The fighting on 17 October resulted in 55 men killed in action, 3 who later died of their wounds, two missing in action, and 75 or more wounded. All 65 men in Alpha Company had been killed or wounded, Delta Company was little better off, and the Battalion Commander and his command group were dead.

The Virtual Wall's Ong Thanh memorial summarizes the action and lists the dead. The 2/28's artillery Forward Observer, 2nd Lt Harold Durham (C Btry, 6/15th Arty), received a posthumous Medal of Honor for his actions, and the 15th Arty's memorial includes a newspaper article which gives another account of the battle.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
brothers and sisters
29 Nov 2001

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Last updated 02/11/2006