Dickie L. Leach (1968/08/08)
Dickie Lynn Leach was born in Aptos, California on September 17, 1945, to Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Leach, who were newcomers to the community. The Leach family also included sons Clarence, Melvin, Calvin and Michael and daughters Mary and Patricia. Dickie grew up in Santa Cruz County and attended elementary school in Aptos until 1957, when his family moved to Alameda, California. He continued grammar school in Alameda and presumably also attended high school in that community.
In March 1964, Leach enlisted in the US Army and upon completion of basic and advanced individual training courses was assigned to duty in Vietnam. During a combat engagement at an unidentified location in July 1966, he was wounded and hospitalized. Following a year's recuperation in an army hospital and with his tour coming to an end, he re-enlisted and was assigned to Germany for a year.
Leach returned to Vietnam in April 1968 and joined the 101st Air Cav Division aerial weapons Company B as a helicopter gunner. On August 8, 1968, Gunship #66-15277 flew into the A Shau Valley in Thua Thien Province and was brought down by an NVA rocket-propelled grenade, killing Specialist Fourth Class Dickie Lynn Leach and fellow crew-members.
His body was recovered and returned to Alameda for a funeral and burial in Golden Gate National Cemetery in San Bruno, CA.
(VVMW; USDVA; Army Air Crews.Com, AWC #66-15227 http://www.armyaircrews.com/huey_nam_68.htm, [15 May 2007, Approx].)