William Patrick Ryland
Lance Corporal
United States Marine Corps
Memphis, Tennessee
December 02, 1947 to August 24, 1968
WILLIAM P RYLAND is on the Wall at Panel W46, Line 8

Combat Aircrew
William P Ryland
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William P Ryland


17 Jun 2004

Pat ... you made my heart go Pitty-Pat! From the first moment I saw you (while I was standing in the shelter of a building entrance watching the rain) when you (a strange boy!) grabbed the handle of my umbrella and said " Let's go - I'll be late for class - what's your name and where can I find you after class?" You gave me wonderful, warm memories of my first year away from home, at Southwestern University in Memphis. You always had a ready smile, an easy laugh, and that Marine haircut even before you were one! Even though it was nearly 37 years ago ... and yet just yesterday, I still remember that smile, that laugh, the genuinely nice young man that you were and would have continued to be. My son was a Marine also (once a Marine, always a Marine) and saw combat in Somalia. My husband is a retired Marine (once a Marine, always a Marine), so I guess I was fated to be somehow tied to the Marines.

I missed you when you left SW, I cried for days when I heard you had been killed, and I'm teary-eyed now, having just now had the guts to find your name on the Wall (which made it so heartbreakingly real). The world lost someone so special with your death. Blessings on you, Pat Ryland - for easing the life of a scared freshman whose family was stationed in Europe while she was in the US. Blessings on you, Pat Ryland, for being the warm and loving human you were made to be. Blessings on you, Pat Ryland - you were a cool water stream for my soul that year, and I loved you for it. You are remembered - and missed.

We dated during college.
Name and email address are not available.


A Note from The Virtual Wall

The following is taken from the USMC/Vietnam Helicopter Association's Pop-A-Smoke web site.

On 24 August 1968, a Marine recon team (Team Tender Rancho) called for an emergency extraction. Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 262 (HMM-262) was tasked with the flight and dispatched two CH-46D helicopters escorted by two VMO-6 UH-1E gunships. Before the extraction took place, however, a decision was made to insert reinforcements instead, and a platoon from Delta 1/1 Marines was assigned to the lift.

On arrival at the landing zone at 1930, the CH-46s were subjected to heavy .51 caliber machinegun fire and the initial insertion attempt was aborted. The escorting gunships worked the area over, and at 2000 a second insertion attempt was made. Once again the CH-46s came under fire, taking both severe damage and several wounded amongst the crew and the embarked Marines. Lieutenant "Woody" Goble's aircraft was the most seriously damaged, losing one engine while on the ground. He sent his crew to his flight leader's aircraft, retaining only the crew chief, and then made a vertical single-engine take-off and brought the aircraft back to base. Goble then volunteered to go back in and was assigned as pilot in command of a new aircraft (CH-46D BuNo 154022) and crew.

At about 2055 Goble approached and crashed in the landing zone. Two men died from injuries received in the crash, co-pilot 1stLt Charles R. Wyatt and crew chief LCpl William P. Ryland. Never the less, the insertion of Delta 1/1 and the extraction of seriously wounded Marines continued.

Ninetyfive Marines from D/1/1 were inserted during the lift. By the end of 25 August five of them had been killed in action. Thus, the rescue of Recon Team Tender Rancho cost seven American lives, one aircraft destroyed, three others severely damaged, and numerous wounded.

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