Marchand, Wayne Ellsworth, SSG

 Photo In Uniform   Service Details
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Last Rank
Staff Sergeant
Last Service Branch
Branch Immaterial
Last MOS Group
Infantry (Enlisted)
Primary Unit
1962-1962, POW/MIA
Service Years
1950 - 1962

Special Forces
Staff Sergeant

Four Service Stripes

Three Overseas Service Bars

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
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Casualty Info
Home Town
Omaha, NE
Last Address
Plattsmouth, NE

Casualty Date
Apr 08, 1962
Hostile, Died while Captured
Gun, Small Arms Fire
Quang Nam (Vietnam)
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
Lafayette Cemetery - Brock, Nebraska
Wall/Plot Coordinates
01E 008

 Official Badges 

Infantry Shoulder Cord

 Unofficial Badges 

 Military Association Memberships
Vietnam Veterans Memorial
  2017, Vietnam Veterans Memorial [Verified] - Assoc. Page

 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar

Combat Infantryman 2nd Award
Master Parachutist
Vietnam - Jump Wings

 Unit Assignments
10th Special Forces Group (Airborne)1st Special Forces Group (Airborne)MAAG Vietnam (MAAGV)POW/MIA
  1953-1956, 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne)
  1959-1962, 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne)
  1962-1962, MAAG Vietnam (MAAGV)
  1962-1962, POW/MIA
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1951-1952 Second Korean Winter (1951-52)
  1959-1962 Multiple JUSMAAGV Operations 1959-1963
  1962-1962 Vietnam War/Advisory Campaign (1962-65)
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

South Viet Nam: We Are Being Overrun

Friday, Apr. 20, 1962
Time Magazine

'The first Americans to die in battle against the Communist Viet Cong guerrillas fell in a remote valley of South Viet Nam last week.

Scene of the struggle was a jungle clearing outside An Chau, a village 360 miles north of Saigon. There, U.S. Sergeants James Gabriel of Honolulu and Wayne E. Marchand of Plattsmouth, Neb., were drilling 31 local Vietnamese volunteers in a two-week field exercise in guard techniques and patrolling. Along to watch the exercises were two new American arrivals in South Viet Nam, Sergeants Francis Quinn of Niagara Falls, N.Y., and George E. Groom of St. Joseph, Mo. All went well until the third night of the exercise.

Suddenly, at 10 p.m., there was rustling in the saw grass across a nearby river. Concerned, Sergeant Gabriel fired warning shots, sent up flares in the direction of the noise. For a long time there was silence. Then came what sounded like a dog's bark. From a different direction, a cock crowed. At last came the tap of a bamboo tocsin, and the Viet Cong came running out of the dark.

This first attack was quickly repulsed, but shortly after daybreak the guerrillas came back in earnest. Five Viet Cong guerrillas rushed the command post, were shot down, only to be followed by five more from another direction. "I saw Sergeant Gabriel phoning and shooting and changing clips all at the same time," said a Vietnamese afterwards. "Three times he was wounded and knocked down. The third time he didn't get up." Before he fell, Gabriel radioed a final message to the U.S. base at Danang seven miles away: "Under heavy attack from all sides. Completely encircled by enemy. Ammunition expended. We are being overrun."

When 20 Americans rushed down from Danang in helicopters, they found the bodies of Gabriel and Marchand. Each had been shot in the head as the Viet Cong fled. The other two Americans had been kidnaped and marched off toward the Laos frontier 40 miles away.'


Date of Loss: 08 April 1962
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 155855 North 1080540 East
Status (in 1973): KIA Body recovered
Other Personnel in Incident: James Gabriel, remains recovered, Francis
Quinn, released, George Groom, released

Although the Combined Action Combat Casualty file list Wayne Marchand as
having died from a gunshot or small arms fire after serving 12 years in the
Army - there is much more to this story.....

The book "Pacific Stars and Stripes, VIETNAM Front Pages" published in 1986

Five Star Edition
Wednesday, April 11, 1962
Vol. 18, No. 100

How U.S. SOldiers Died
Too wounded to Walk, 2 Are Slain by Guerillas
Da Nang, Republic of Vietnam (AP) -- Communist guerillas killed two captured U.S. Army sergeants because they were too badly wounded to walk any farther, the survivors of a jungle ambush reported Wednesday. The American's arms had been bound behind them.

Vietnamese patrols and air forces were still searching the jungle area 45
miles east of the Laos frontier for two other American army sergeants who
were captured in the attack on a bivouac Sunday. The U.S. Army identified the slain soldiers as Staff Sgt. Wayne E. Marchand pf Plattsmouth, Neb., and SP5 James Gabriel of Honolulu.

The two missing men are SFC Francis Quinn of Niagra Falls, NY and Sgt.
George E. Groom of Stewartsvill, MO. All four soldiers were members of an Army Special Forces unit which specializes in anti-querilla warfare and were engaged in training a village self-defense group.

Survivors told U.S. authorities the two slain Americans were seriously
wounded in the attack by Viet [the article copy ends there]
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