Griffin, Rodney Lynn, SGT

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Last Rank
Last Service Branch
Last Primary MOS
11D10-Armor Reconnaissance Specialist
Last MOS Group
Armor (Enlisted)
Primary Unit
1969-1970, 11D10, 25th Infantry Division (Tropic Lightning)
Service Years
1969 - 1970


One Overseas Service Bar

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Sgt. S. Kimbrow to remember Griffin, Rodney Lynn, SGT.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Last Address

Casualty Date
May 02, 1970
Hostile, Died while Missing
Air Loss, Crash - Land
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
11W 085

 Official Badges 

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Association Memberships
Vietnam Veterans MemorialAmerican Battle Monuments Commission
  1970, Vietnam Veterans Memorial [Verified] - Assoc. Page
  2015, American Battle Monuments Commission

 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar

Combat Infantryman 1st Award

 Enlisted/Officer Basic Training
  1969, Basic Training (Fort Leonard Wood, MO), E
 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
2nd Battalion, 34th Armor25th Infantry Division (Tropic Lightning)
  1969-1970, 11D10, 2nd Battalion, 34th Armor
  1969-1970, 11D10, 25th Infantry Division (Tropic Lightning)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1970-1970 Vietnam War/Sanctuary Counteroffensive Campaign (1970)/Operation Toan Thang 42 / Rock Crusher
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

On May 2, 1970, eight U.S. Army personnel were flying in a UH-1H in northern Tay Ninh Province, South Vietnam. They crossed into Cambodia and were shot down by hostile ground fire, crashing southwest of Memot City.

One Army Private evaded capture and was rescued. Four were captured. Two of those captured, Warrant Officer Maslowski and Specialist Crowson, were released in February 1973 during Operation Homecoming.

Warrant Officer Varnado was wounded in the right side and left leg. He was taken to a hospital after captured and was never seen by U.S. POWs as alive after that time. A wartime report was received describing an American POW who died at Hospital K-21 on 26 August 1970, wounded in the left thigh during a helicopter crash in June 1970.

The unit which shot down the helicopter was Z26 Company, 75th Artillery Group.

In January 1973, the Provisional Revolutionary Government acknowledged the death in captivity of Captain Young and Warrant Officer Michael B. Varnado. Varnado's returns were repatriated on April 27, 1989. The death of Captain Young was witnessed by nine U.S. POWs who were repatriated during Operation Homecoming.

In February 1975, a Viet Cong defector who had served as a guard at prison camp TB.22 described Captain Young's death and located his burial site. I n April 1970, a Viet Cong defector reported having seen an American in Kampong Cham Province in April 1970. This report was believed associated with Specialist Price. In 1981 three South Vietnamese Army escapees from prison B-7 in Kratie Province reported an American POW there in 1971 who had reportedly been there for one year. During their only one hour interview they identified one of two photographs of Price as similar to the individual imprisoned at their camp. This identification led to a reclassification of Price from missing in action to POW.

Specialist Griffin and Captain Richardson were last seen alive after their crash and prior to the capture of Captain Young and the three others. Although those surviving into captivity were kept together and joined other U.S. POWs then in custody inside Cambodia, returning U.S. POWs never saw Richardson, Price or Griffin alive in captivity.

A classified document last believed in the possession of Captain Richardson was shown to Captain Young. Captain Richardson was last seen alive and firing his pistol at enemy forces and was then hit by hostile fire while running. After the end of hostilities, all unaccounted for crewmen were eventually declared dead/body not recovered.

Final Disposition:
Crew: B Company, 229th Aviation Battalion
WO1 Michael B. Varnado, pilot, died in captivity
WO1 Daniel F. Maslowski, co-pilot, captured, released 12 February 1973
SP4 Frederick H. Crowson, crew chief, captured, released 12 February 1973
Pvt Tony Karreci, door gunner, avoided capture.

Passengers: From HHC, 2nd Battalion, 34th Armor
Capt. Robert M. Young, died in captivity
Capt. Dale W. Richardson, known captured, MIA
SP4 Rodney M. Griffin, believed captured, MIA
SP4 Bunyan D. Price, Jr., MIA


Sgt. Griffin was killed and buried in Cambodia. His remains were found and repatriated in 2015. He was interred 25 April 2015 in East Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, Mexico, Audrain County, Missouri, Plot: Section 7/Sunrise.
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