Roberto Pena Rios

Army of the United States
16 October 1949 - 04 March 1968
San Angelo, Texas
Panel 42E Line 071


Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign


The database page for Roberto Pena Rios

30 Nov 2005

Robert was born and raised in San Angelo, Texas. He graduated from San Angelo Central High School in May 1967 (the photos are from their 1966 and 1967 annuals). He completed basic training at Fort Polk and Armor School. He completed parachute training at Fort Benning. He was assigned as an armored crewman to D Company, 16th Armored Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade (Separate).

The 16th Armored Regiment provided an airborne anti-tank capability to the 173rd Airborne Brigade with its M-56 self-propelled 90mm "Scorpion" guns. On March 4, 1968 D Company lost eight men in a fire fight with an NVA division. Pvt Rios was on a 90mm gun that took a direct hit from a rocket-propelled grenade and exploded. Pvt Rios was burned in the explosion and from the intense heat. He died before he could be medevaced.

He was buried in San Angelo, Texas with full military honors. He is remembered by San Angelo Central High School, Class of the 60;s, the Concho Valley Vietnam Memorial in San Angelo and by the Permian Basin Vietnam Veterans' Memorial in Midland, Texas.

"Lest we Forget"

From a PBVVM representative,
Billy M. Brown

A Note from The Virtual Wall

M56 Scorpion
M-56 Scorpion antitank gun

The eight men killed in the engagement described above were

  • SP5 Gary D. Hall, Vernal, UT
  • SP5 Robert H. Walker, Spur, TX
  • SP4 Robert W. Abernathy, Rockville, MD
  • PFC Terrence W. Achor, Whittier, CA
  • PFC Prentis B. Boykin, Vancouver, WA
  • PFC Willie F. Foster, Anderson, SC
  • PFC William P. Mason, Horsham, PA (Medic from HHC, 173rd Abn Bde)
  • PVT Roberto P. Rios, San Angelo, TX

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a PBVVM representative,
Billy M. Brown
4015 Melody Lane, Odessa, Texas 79762
30 Nov 2005

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Last updated 12/04/2005