Riley Charles O'Neil, Jr

Army of the United States
04 June 1947 - 15 December 1967
Kansas City, Kansas
Panel 32E Line 003

Combat Medic

Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Air Medal, Army Commendation Medal, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Riley Charles O'Neil, Jr

15 May 2006

We all called him "Alfalfa" when we were kids, boy he hated that! But true to his nature he always laughed it off. We grew up playing Cowboys & Indians, but the years flew by and then the guns were real, as was the fighting. I enlisted, but Riley was better educated than I was and out of high school gave college a whirl. He didn't take to it too well and quit. That's when the Selective Service pounced on him and off he went. Being the good-hearted person he was he went for Medic. After his training he was sent out. I'm not sure just how long he was in-country, but during some intense fighting at a hot LZ in Binh Dinh he flew in to evac the wounded. That's when he took small arms fire and was hit. That was 12/15/67.

After all these years my heart still hurts. I go to his gravesite which is a few miles from my home and we talk. Sometimes I cry, sometimes I hold it in. His family lives in California so I take care of him. It makes it a little easier to understand knowing that no one "took" his life, he "gave" it so that others might live. I better go now as my eyes are tearing up and he wouldn't want that.

His life long friend and buddy,
Tim R. Moore

A Note from The Virtual Wall

On 15 December 1967 the 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry, fought a battle at An My (2) in Binh Dinh Province, a bitter fight that cost the lives of 21 American soldiers:
  • B Company:
    • SGT Juan S. Ozuna, Wapato, WA
    • SP4 Willie French, Pittsboro, NC
    • SP4 Ronald L. Klausing, San Diego, CA

  • C Company:
    • SFC Robert Levine, Jamaica, NY
    • SFC James E. Lynn, Kenosha, WI
    • SFC John D. Roche, Bay City, MI
    • SSG David P. Jewell, Owensboro, KY
    • SGT Richard J. Boeshart, Sioux City, IA
    • CPL Steven Matarazzo, Montgomery, NY
    • SP4 Wayne D. Ryza, Houston, TX
    • CPL Michael D. Sander, Oakland, CA
    • PFC James J. Koprivnikar, Cheswick, PA

  • D Company:
    • 1LT Roy E. Southerland, Morristown, TN
    • SGT Robert L. Flores, Parker, AZ
    • SP4 Ramon Cortes-Rosa, Hialeah, FL
    • SP4 Charles W. Hicks, Butner, NC
    • SP4 Omar Lebron-Domenech, San Sebastian, PR
    • CPL James Tierno, Jackson Heights, NY

  • HQ Company:
    • CPL Richard A. Choppa, Hubbard, OH
    • CPL Riley C. O'Neil, Kansas City, KS
    • PFC Richard M. Proscia, New Hyde Park, NY
As a medic, PFC O'Neill was assigned to HQ Company, but he was in the field with D Company when he was killed.

Visit John Dennison's
Medics on the Wall
memorial which honors the
Army Medics and Navy Corpsmen who died in Vietnam.

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 15 May 2006
Last updated 08/10/2009