United States Navy

Richard Charles Archer

Machinist 2nd Class
USS Mansfield (DD-728)
United States Navy
27 August 1944 - 25 September 1967
Hyannis, MA
Panel 27E Line 008

Dick Archer
Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, and Vietnam Campaign medals

The database page for Richard Charles Archer


Dick Archer As scoutmaster of a Boy Scout troop 1958 to 1960, I was privileged to meet the young Richard. He was a fine boy, well liked by all in his troop. I had been away from scouting for a little over four years and had some catching up to do on some of the new methods in scouting. As my Junior Assistant Scoutmaster, "Dick" was a big help to me. The handsome, young man in my memory looks much like this - 1964 Barnstable High School graduation portrait.

After moving away from the Cape in 1960, I lost touch with Richard, but did hear from friends on the Cape that he had joined the Navy. Moving back here in 1980, I learned he had been killed in Nam and he was the first man from the Town Of Barnstable killed in the Vietnam War.

In 1990 I visited the Moving Wall upon its visit to Hyannis and found his name inscribed on it. The memories of him brought a lump to my throat and tears to my eyes. My thoughts were why and how did this fine lad die at such a young age, before he could really live his life.

I have been fortunate to have found and corresponded with several men who served with him. I also located his father, Arthur, still living nearby, who graciously invited me to visit.

Richard has been honored in numerous ways by shipmates, friends, and the government.



USS MANSFIELD (DD-728) On 25 September 1967 MANSFIELD was one of several destroyers conducting SEA DRAGON operations along the North Vietnam coastline in the vicinity of Dong Hoi. After a north-to-south firing run, the Officer in Tactical Command ordered a starboard 180 degree turn in preparation for a south-to-north run, bringing the ships closer to the shoreline on a track parallel to the earlier N/S run.

MM2 Archer's General Quarters assignment was with a damage control party (Repair 5) positioned amidships.

During the second run, North Vietnamese shore batteries responded vigorously. A single shell hit MANSFIELD at the base of her #1 stack, causing minor damage to the ship. MANSFIELD silenced the shore battery ... but Petty Officer Archer was dead and two of his shipmates were seriously injured.

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A memorial from his friend,
28 Mar 2001

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Photographs annd text taken from Jake's original website.
With all respect - K. J. Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)