Harold A. Bird (1965/09/18)

Harold was a corpsman who watched out for his marines during the attack on Da Nang.

Harold Alvin Bird was born to Mr. and Mrs. Maurice A. Bird on August 5, 1943, in Clymer, New York. He and his brothers, Maurice Jr., Eugene and John, joined their parents in the family move to Lompoc, California; however, his sister Nancy remained in New York. Harold completed the first two years of high school at Lompoc in Santa Barbara County. After the family resettled in Boulder Creek in 1960, he enrolled in San Lorenzo Valley High School and graduated with honors in 1962.

Harold Bird enlisted in the local US Naval Reserve Surface Division and went on active duty in 1962. After completing training at the US Naval Training Center in San Diego, he was sent to a hospitalman school to become a navy hospitalman or marine corpsman. Bird, who considered making the navy his career, was promoted to hospital corpsman third class and sent to Camp Pendleton for field training. After graduation he was sent to Vietnam.

Harold arrived in Vietnam on August 5, 1965 and was assigned to Charlie Company of the 1st Regiment, 1st Battalion of the 1st Marine Division. He had only been in Vietnam five weeks when Viet Cong guerillas attacked the Da Nang air base that his unit was guarding. In a predawn hand-to-hand assault on September 18, 1965, Hospitalman Third Class Harold Alvin Bird was shot and killed while attending to wounded marines.

His body was recovered and returned to California where he was buried in the Golden Gate National Cemetery at San Carlos.

(USDVA; VNMW; SCSn September 21, 1965 1:1, September 26, 1965 10:5)

Creator: Nelson, Robert L.
Source: Remembering our own: the Santa Cruz County military roll of honor 1861-2010. Santa Cruz, CA: The Museum of Art & History, c2010.
Date: Undated
Type: OBIT
Coverage: 1960s
Rights: Reproduced by permission of Robert L. Nelson and The Museum of Art & History.
Identifier: RO-BIRD

Citation

Nelson, Robert L. “Harold A. Bird (1965/09/18).” Remembering our own: the Santa Cruz County military roll of honor 1861-2010. Santa Cruz, CA: The Museum of Art & History, c2010. SCPL Local History. https://history.santacruzpl.org/omeka/items/show/4860. Accessed 29 June 2022.