Thomas Steven Hickman

Corporal
D CO, 2ND BN, 1ST INFANTRY, 196 INF BDE
Army of the United States
01 August 1951 - 26 August 1970
Loogootee, Indiana
Panel 07W Line 011

196 INF BDE 1ST INF RGT
Combat Infantry

Purple Heart (2 awards), National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign
Thomas S. Hickman

The database page for Thomas Steven Hickman

26 Aug 2004

Steve, We love you and miss you very much. Life is very lonely here without you, but we get by. You have 3 Nephews, 3 Nieces, and 2 Great Nephews. Mom is gone now, I hope she is with you. Kevin (Dolly's son) is married to my daughter and your niece. They have a son and he has your middle name (Steven). I wish I could have been with you and maybe I could have protected you, or at least I would have tried. The Moving Wall was just here in our county last week. You and the 4 other boys from this County who are also on the Wall were honored, but I think you were there to see it. They say time heals all wounds but I am here to tell you that is not true. I have never gotten over the loss of you, and never will. I will do everything I can to keep your memory alive, and all the other names on that "Wall". I know you are with me and watch over me, just be waiting for me to welcome me, when it is my turn to come to heaven. I love you so much.

Your sister, Karen



7 Sep 2004

Good Morning Steve, was just sitting here thinking about you once again and decided to chat with you. You have a lot of people here in this small County who think a lot of you. Many people you wouldn't even believe. I have watched so many people go to where your name is on the Wall and touch your name and cry, some smile, thinking of things you did together that was fun. I was told by a friend at the Wall, that there was a girl who had such a crush on you, that when you left us she just couldn't handle it and had several problems dealing with your death. I knew her but I never knew she felt that way about you and I don't think you did either. She came to see your name and touch it on the Wall, I had to go give her a hug and tell her thank you. You could tell she has not gotten over you.

There have been so many people help me with things for you. Like this Memorial. 2 good men and veterans also helped put this together and I think it is wonderful, now I can talk to you and share my days. I am trying to get a Play going for the Community for Veterans' Day, I hope it is a success.Your nieces Leslie and Lynzee are such understanding girls and have known about you since birth almost. They are very proud of their Uncle. But would have like to have met you in person. Your 2 great nephews are adorable, and such sweet boys. Devin was such a big help at the Wall and the baby has your middle name and that makes him very special to me.

Well, bro I will close for now but I will check in every day. I love you, always have, always will.

Your sister
Karen



13 Nov 2004

Hello, Brother, I have been very busy, getting a new Veterans Group together to help them (the Veterans) in need. I hope I am able to help as many as possible. I do this for you because I know if you would had made it home I would have wanted you to have someone to help you get to the hospital or with anything you might have needed.

Just wanted to say "Happy Veterans' Day" to you and let you know "I will never forget". Love You, Karen



5 Dec 2004

Hello Steve, Here I am once again, to let you know I have formed a Veterans Group in our home town of Loogootee, Indiana. Myself and the other members of this group have decided to name this Veterans Group after you. It is now called the Hickman Veterans Association of Indiana. I will keep this organization in the Highest Honor, just as you did by giving your life for Our Country. It is also in Memory of all Veterans in all Wars who did not make it home. It is also in Gratitude to the Veterans who served and came Home. I hope I make you Proud, just as I am Proud to have had you as my Brother.

From your sister,
Karen



16 Feb 2005

Hi Bro, Sorry, I haven't written in a while but I have been ill and in the hospital. But I am out now and on my way to a full recovery I hope. Just wanted to let you know I am again working on the Hickman Veterans Incorporated Post #1. This time I will not let small things bother me, like I did before. I just want to get your name out there so people won't forget and help as many Veterans and families as I can. I love you. We lost 2 cousins recently and I am sure you welcomed them home with open arms. Give Mom a hug and kiss for me. I will write again soon. Sister, Karen



14 Apr 2005

Hello Steve, I know I have been kind of slacking off on my writing to you, but never think I have forgotten you, you are in my heart and mind every day.

Just wanted to let you know I am still trying to help the veterans, I will probably do this the rest of my life. I took some flowers out to your body's resting place last Sunday, I know you are not there but it is just the thought that the body is. I also took Mom some flowers, she has a new stone, very nice, it is a stand-up one, like yours.

Well, I will close for now, just know I love you very much, and I am doing fine. please give Mom a hug and kiss from me. Tell her I love her also. I'll write again , this time I will try not to stay away so long.

Love, Karen



07 Dec 2005

Hello Bro, It's me again. I know I haven't written in a while, but you are always with me. Remember when we were kids how Dad always played Johnny Cash's music? Usually on the weekends, well Johnny and his wife are up in heaven with you now, so you probably have met them. I went to the movie about their lives together and it was so wonderful. Remember sometimes we didn't like to listen to that music but now I am glad I grew up with it. Well, another year is almost gone and it will be 2006 soon. It just doesn't seem possible. I almost feel that time stopped in 1970. Merry Christmas, and give Mom and the family hugs from me. I love you, Karen.

PS - Visit my
personal memorial to my brother



27 Dec 2005

Hello my Bro: Well another Christmas has passed us by, and once again an empty spot was in my heart. Will it ever get any easier? I don't think so, it's been 35 years now, and I still miss you as much now as the day you left us. We had a cousin killed in a car wreck this past week, I couldn't go to the funeral, she was only 24 and I just can't bring myself to go. She was our cousin Denny's daughter. I pray for Denny and his family, I hope they will find comfort. I recieved an email from a Vietnam Veteran today who was in your company and also in Vietnam when you were there. He was very nice and wanted to let me know that he kind of recognized you from your picture. I was comforted to know that someone remembers you from that God-forsaken place. I want to shout, "How could you forget him, he was special!" but they were all special and to me they all seem like my brothers.

It will be New Years 2006 soon and Dad will be 75 years old, can you imagine? Doesn't seem possible, does it? Where did the time go? It went too fast, that is for sure. Well, I will go for now, but I will write you again soon. Once again, I love you. Please give the family a kiss and hug from me, and if you can, please keep an eye on us down here too, OK? Forever in my heart ... Karen



28 Feb 2006

Hello My Brother, Happy New Year, sorry I am late in wishing you that. But I am starting to kind of be forgetful, you know I will be 52 this year, can you imagine that? Me 52? Well, I still act like I am 16, sometimes, a friend of mine and I were talking the other day, and we both said, this just isn't possible that we are still not 16. I wonder if everyone feels that way, or is it just a few. Anyway, I am writing to tell you about a friend we grew up with, he passed away this week, seems like all so many we knew have passed on now. I miss all of them but especially you, my dear brother. Our little brother was one of his pallbearers, it was hard on him, he takes those kinds of things so hard. Keep an eye on him, will you, I worry so much about him. He's had so rough growing up. He is very independant though, I just feel he doesn't like getting very close to people. Afraid he will get hurt again. He's such a good guy. I wish you could have been here to help him through some rough times, I think he would have listened to you. Our little sister, she was just a baby when you went to service, she has 2 sons now, I don't hardly see her, I know she is busy, but I think of her often. Dad was at the funeral home the other evening to see our friend, he looks good, he just doesn't change much, I don't think. Well, bro, must close for now, getting close to bedtime. I love and miss you, give everyone a hug for me, tell them I love them. Write you again soon.

Karen



30 May 2006

Hello Bro, once again I am getting behind in writing you. (Sorry)

Well, another Memorial Day has come and gone, put some flowers on your resting place and Mom's too, it's a hard day for me and I am sure every family, that has lost a loved one in a War. Your lives are cut so short, but to me you will always be 19, young and proud of that uniform, and what you were doing. I put a Mozaic Bench out front in the yard, along with planting, a Rose Bush, I am waiting for the name plate I ordered to come and then Joe will put it on the bench and it is in honor of you. I will be able to go out in my own yard, sit on it, and think about you and the great times and hard times we had together. How is everyone in heaven, with you? All our family members? Grandma is with you now also, I miss her too. But I know you are all together and that gives me comfort. I have a community center in here our hometown now and your picture has a special place in the building. You are always with me, everywhere I go. I will close for now, my bro, watch over all of us left down here, put a good word in for us with the "Big Guy" - we need all the help we can get. I will write again, but if it isn't soon, it will be later, I promise. I love you always, you are my Hero, always have been, always will be. Take Care of yourself and everyone with you. Give them a big kiss and hug for me ... Your sister, Karen



29 Oct 2006

Hello Bro, Here I am again, I know it's been a while but I always return. The holidays are slowly approaching again, and I think this is the hardest time of year for me. I remember when we were kids, how we would sneak and always knew before we opened our presents what we were getting. There is a Christmas show that comes on every year, and it reminds me so much of the way we were - "A Christmas Carol." It is so funny and I watch it every year, because it reminds me of us. Well, the year is just about gone and we have lost several friends and family down here, but I know they are with you in a beautiful place, but I miss them too. Lynzee is having surgery tomorrow on her back, and I want to ask you to please be with her during the surgery, keep her safe for me ok? She feels like you are her Guardian Angel. She is so young for back surgery, but her discs are shot, and she has been in severe pain for 3 months, so she is anxious to have this surgery, in hopes that it will relieve some of the pain. Had Joe's grandaughter over this evening for Trick or Treat night, she is 6 months old and just adorable. She was dressed as a pink and white kitty ... Lynzee thinks of her as a little sister, so it made her night to see her. Well, until next time, I love you, give Mom a kiss for me. Love you both, Karen



20 Jan 2007

Hello Bro, Just wanted to stop in and tell you how much I Love You. And I still miss you like it was only yesterday. I think I have finally come upon soemthing that helps me as well as others. You know what it is, so I won't say anything.Keep watching over us, and give Mom and everyone Kisses and Hugs, from me. Be back later. Love Karen



17 Apr 2007

Hey Bro, Just wanted to let you know I am running for Mayor, in this small town of ours. Did you ever think I would do that? Yea, you knew me best, you probably knew one day I would. Anyway, could you kind of give the "Big Guy" up there a heads up about me running? Ask him if maybe he could kind of give me an edge. I love you, I miss you and Mom, and other family and friends that are there with you, but you are all in my thoughts and in my heart.

Keep an eye on us down here, seems like every day there's another tragedy in this world. Also keep a close eye on Lynzee, her health is not the greatest, she could use some comforting from you. You know you are her Hero too. Well, I'm going to go for now. Wish me luck in the Mayor's race, it should be interesting... Love, Karen



18 Sep 2007

Hello Bro, Just wanted to let you know I have a Memorial Bench set up for you in the yard. I also have a rose bush behind the Memorial Bench, your picture put into the bench and the American Flag and POW flag, flying above your Memorial. I feel you are right here with me now. I love you, and I will keep you updated on everything that goes on down here. Please give Mom and the rest of the family and friends, a big hug from us and let them know they are in our hearts... Love You, Karen



From his sister,
Karen Hickman
peaceluv1969@yahoo.com

Gold Star Siblings
27 Aug 2004

Tom, You wouldn't remember me, but I married your best friend, Kevin. Our oldest son, Trevor, is married to your niece, Leslie. Kevin is a grandpa now, and very happy about it.

Kevin still has the letter you wrote on August 1, 1970, your 19th birthday. And, he still has the beer label half the two of you planned to rejoin on your return from Vietnam. He visited the cemetery yesterday, as he does each year on August 26. Sometimes he drinks a beer for you, but mostly he just talks. He has never forgotten and he never will.

From a friend,
Debra Guy
debraguy@dmrtc.net

11 Sep 2004

Dear Steve,

You are my hero, you gave your life for your country. I'm so very proud of you. I wish I could have known you. I keep a picture of you holding me on my nightstand. There is not a day goes by that I don't think of you. You will never be forgotten. "Only The Good Die Young."

From your little sister,
Kelly Bridgewater
kellybridgewater@hotmail.com

6 Jan 2005

Steve,

You probably wouldn't remember me, but I went to school with your sister, Karen. Being only 16 in 1970, I had no real idea about what was happening in Viet Nam. I do know that I was very against the war, while at the same time being very proud of our armed forces (I had an uncle who was a Green Beret and did three tours).

A couple of years ago I had a chance to visit the Wall while on a business trip to WDC. I can't even begin to express how I felt or how moved I just was being there. I found your name and was deeply saddened as I remembered hearing about your death. I can't even begin to imagine the loss to your family, and especially to your sister, Karen.

Please know that you are honored and remembered.

From
Deb Strange
dastrange@worldnet.att.net

23 Sep 2005

Dear Steve,
It has been a very, very long time. I am your cousin Carolyn, Dan and Mildred's daughter. We were all so sad to learn about your death. I know that we did not know each other as adults, only as children. My sisters and I always enjoyed coming to your house to visit. It seemed that we were always able to go to the swimming pool or the theatre. Everyone always enjoyed the visits with you and your family. Sometimes time seems to stand still - especially when there is such a tragedy as your death. I felt so sorry for your parents, sisters and brother. Aunt Norma's death really left an impression on me, as well as your's also. I think that I understood, as least somewhat, how your mother felt. My husband was murdered twelve years ago. He was dirt bike riding and a seventeen year old guy shot him. The apparent reason being for his bike, trailer and Blazer that he was driving. I realize all too well that with the death of someone that you love so completely, it leaves a huge void in your life...

From a cousin,
Carolyn
barbiemcca@aol.com

A Note from The Virtual Wall

On 26 Aug 1970 CH-47B helicopters of the 178th ASHC were delivering elements of the 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry, into a "hot" landing zone. While on final approach to landing the fifth aircraft (tail number 67-18445) was hit by enemy RPG and .51 caliber machinegun fire, crashed into trees, exploded, and burned. An internal load of 105mm howitzer ammunition contributed to the destruction. Thirty-one men aboard the aircraft died; one is known to have survived.


The point-of-contact for this memorial is
his sister,
Karen Hickman
peaceluv1969@yahoo.com



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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 26 Aug 2004
Last updated 06/09/2008