David Orville Kamp

United States Marine Corps
18 December 1947 - 19 March 1997
Muskegon, Michigan
Panel 32E Line 080


David O. Kamp

Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for David Orville Kamp

Mrs. Joyce Kamp, Memorial Day 2000

Mrs. Joyce Kamp

"I'm very proud to present the name of my son,
United States Marine Corps Corporal David O. Kamp."

Michigan vet added to Vietnam wall
Ceremony ends fight for man who died 30 years after injury
By Steve Schmadeke
The Detroit News

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Ignoring the weight of the radio strapped to his back, Marine Cpl. David O. Kamp charged up the Vietnamese hill behind his captain.

The captain was killed almost instantly, and Kamp was thrown, head over heels, back down the hill when a bullet pierced his neck and bounced off his spinal column -- an injury the 20-year-old would soon discover had left him a quadriplegic.

He lay near the bottom of the hill for five hours, his lungs slowly filling with blood, before being airlifted out.

It was Dec. 27, 1967 -- and for the next 30 years, Kamp beat the odds and stayed alive, mostly under the care of his mother, Joyce, back in Muskegon, Mich.

On Monday, his name was engraved on the black granite wall of the Vietnam Veterans' Memorial -- one of the last of the war's 58,220 victims to be so memorialized.

"He never gave up," said Joyce Kamp. "He was an amazing man, to have it cut right out from under you."

Joyce Kamp, who is dying of cancer, hopes to see her son's name on the wall during a Memorial Day visit later this month.

For a year and a half after Kamp's death in 1997 his friend and infantry platoon leader Richard Anderson worked to get his name added to the memorial, which is reserved for those who died directly from Vietnam War injuries.

Anderson gathered five medical letters documenting that Kamp died as a result of complications of quadriplegia, but in the end only efforts by a friend with connections to Sen. John McCain got the process going, culminating in Monday's engraving ceremony.

Detroit News, Tuesday, May 9, 2000

3rd Battalion, 1st Marines

and their memorial to
Corporal David O Kamp, USMC

10 June 2001

In remembrance of a man I knew from grade school through high school, and whose friendship I enjoyed.

Let the generations know that men and women in uniform guaranteed their freedom at any cost. For every drop of blood that was shed, countless tears were shed. I will never forget your sacrifice, my friend, and know my freedom was NOT free.

The sponsor of this addendum wishes to remain anonymous.
E-Mail may be forwarded via the

Hey Kamp -

It's been about four years now since you left us. Lee and I had a chance to visit your Mom just before God sent her to you. Before we know it, Lee and I will be there with you and your Mom.

I left the root beer at the Wall on Memorial Day 2000 but I'll bring the ice cream when I come again.

Semper Fi - Dick ("LT")

Richard C. Anderson, 21 Sep 01,
Friend and platoon leader
E-Mail may be forwarded via the

A Note from The Virtual Wall

When Battalion Landing Team 3/1, built around the 3rd Battalion, 1st Marines, landed at Than Tham Khe during Operation Badgertooth they ran into a buzz-saw. At day's end on 27 Dec 1967, BLT 3/1 had lost 49 men, most of them from Lima Company:
  • H&S Company: 3 men
  • K Company: 6 men
  • L Company: 26 men
    • Capt Thomas S. Hubbell, Milford, MI
    • 2ndLt George M. Broz, Stanwood, WA
    • SSgt Donald J. Cruden, Bayonne, NJ
    • Sgt Norman W. Clearwater, Catskill, NY
    • Cpl Albert L. Horner, Kenton, OH
    • LCpl Carl E. Abner, Campbell, CA
    • LCpl Ronald P. Allen, Winona, MN
    • LCpl Lawrence M. Barnes, Jersey City, NJ
    • LCpl Kenneth L. Chappell, Richmond, VA
    • LCpl Robert E. Hentschel, Rochester, NY
    • LCpl Donald C. Hopewell, Lakeland, FL
    • LCpl Mitchell Hughes, Louisville, KY
    • LCpl Harvey L. Rembert, Enid, OK
    • LCpl James E. Williams, Oklahoma City, OK
    • Pfc Bruce C. Alfred, Moultrie, GA
    • Pfc Garry L. Gabriel, Boise, ID
    • Pfc Earl L. Lewis, Odessa, TX
    • Pfc Vernon R. Lipinski, Baltimore, MD
    • Pfc George E. Lonsdale, Hartford, CT
    • Pfc Carlos F. Lozano, Detroit, MI
    • Pfc Gary W. Martell, Olmsted Falls, OH
    • Pfc Raymond B. Palma, Pacoima, CA
    • Pfc Arphalia L. Richardson, Melbourne, FL
    • Pfc Darnay Shubert, Philadelphia, PA
    • Pfc Stephen Williams, Philadelphia, PA
    • Pvt William J. Brown, Baltimore, MD
  • M Company: 12 men
  • A Company, 1st Engineers: 1 man
  • B Company, 1st Recon Bn: 1 man
The final known casualty from Than Tham Khe was Corporal David O. Kamp, Lima 3/1, rendered a quadraplegic by small arms fire.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
another 1st Marine,
Oliver Jackson

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 29 Mar 2001
Last updated 01/13/2012