Roy C. Calcote (1971/04/10)
Sergeant Calcote survived four tours as a Green Beret in Vietnam only to suffer an accidental gunshot wound when he came home.
Roy C. Calcote was born in Santa Cruz, California, on March 24, 1943, to Mr. and Mrs. David Calcote. The Calcote family also included another son, David Jr., and a daughter, Ruby. Roy, who was also known as Cim, grew up in Santa Cruz County and was educated in local elementary schools. During his high school years, he attended both Santa Cruz and San Lorenzo Valley high schools.
In 1960 Calcote left school early, enlisted in the US Navy and received boot camp training at the US Naval Training Center in San Diego. At the completion of his four-year tour he was honorably discharged from the Navy.
After briefly returning to civilian life, Roy enlisted in the US Army. During basic training, he volunteered for Special Forces training. With the successful completion of that program he was issued his Green Beret.
“The United States Army Special Forces, known in the United States simply as Special Forces or SF, and informally known as 'Green Berets,' is an elite special operations force of the US Army trained for guerrilla warfare, unconventional warfare, and special operations. Its primary mission is to train and assist foreign indigenous forces.
The main SF unit in South Vietnam was the 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne) [it] earned seventeen Congressional Medals of Honor in Vietnam, making it the most prominently decorated unit for its size in that conflict.
Special Forces personnel also played key roles in the highly secret Military Assistance Command Vietnam (MACV) Studies and Observation Group.”
During the Vietnam War, Roy Calcote was the recipient of two Bronze Stars for bravery and three Purple Hearts. When he returned, he married Elaine and they had two daughters, Cimberly and Shaunda. The family later established their permanent residence in Porterville, California.
On March 27, 1971, while he was still serving in the army, Calcote was the victim of an accidental gunshot wound that required hospitalization. While being treated at Letterman Hospital in San Francisco on April 10, 1971, Staff Sergeant Roy Calcote died. His remains were brought to Santa Cruz for a funeral and burial in Oakwood Memorial Park.
(SCSn April 13, 1971 26:6; WIKI, US Army Special Forces)