Larry Lee Boice

Lance Corporal
United States Marine Corps
16 December 1947 - 10 December 1967
Bryant, Indiana
Panel 31E Line 071



Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Larry Lee Boice

02 Jul 2006

Our cousin, Larry Lee Boice, LCpl, US Marine Corps, was killed in South Vietnam on Dec 10th, 1967. His death devastated our close-knit family and brought the war home to all of us.

In remembrance of Larry and all those who died in Viet Nam, we remember:

Larry Boice,
son of George and Mildred Boice,
brother of George Jr, Randy, and Robert.

Larry died just 5 days before his 20th birthday.

Larry died in the Quang Nam section of Viet Nam.

Only a day before he died, Larry called his parents and ended the the conversation with "I'll be seeing you around the first of May." He was due for release from the service at that time.

Larry's name is on the Viet Nam Memorial, Panel 31E, Line 21.

46 Americans were killed in Viet Nam on Dec 10, 1967.

Only one other soldier died in the same Province as Larry on that day.

"Larry's death has haunted me for decades. We, cousins from all branches of the family tree, grew up at the same time, and experienced the same things. I can probably say that we all were terrified about the possibility of being drafted, and serving in Nam. A bad war ... as it turned out, should never have happened. Our cousin, Larry, paid for it dearly, as did his family and friends." - Patrick Boice, cousin

"It is my understanding that Larry stepped on a land mine. He had traded duty with another soldier so that he could have his birthday off. I remember Larry as being a very nice, quiet boy. He really liked coming to Grandma Boice's house. I understand that he had been injured before his death while in Viet Nam but they just patched the boys up and sent them back to duty. That is really sad." - Joyce (Boice) Caetta, aunt

"Larry is in my thoughts frequently. I've visited the traveling wall on several occasions. I remember him when we were kids, always a smile on his face. Larry was a fun kid to be around. He was two years older than me ... at the time he seemed much older. I remember seeing his body in the plexiglass coffin at his funeral. I have known others in my school who had been killed ... Larry was family." - Patrick Boice, cousin

"Larry was 6 months older than I and I remember him well. I felt that Larry joined the Marine Corps to experience the world and wanted to experience more of life outside of Bryant, Indiana. Our older cousin, Jim Walker, was in Viet Nam and I know Larry looked up to Jim." - John Peterson, cousin

"I remember the day when my mother got the news of Larry's death. I was still in high school, graduating in a few months. Mom just screamed and cried. I think now looking back on it ... she was fearful that the same thing would happen to me. I was lucky to not see Viet Nam in my Navy career. It has bothered me all these years that Larry had to pay the price for all of us." - John Peterson, cousin

From a cousin,
John C. Peterson
P. O. Box 6803, Ozona, Florida 34660

08 Jul 2006

I am a Boice cousin. I did not know Larry but know his life pays for my freedom. Larry's family continues to pay every day they live and he is dead. My grateful thanks to Larry and to the family.

From a cousin,
Claudia R. Riley
Great-granddaughter of Catherine Jane (Boice) Runkel

02 Aug 2006

Larry served in the 2nd Platoon of Charlie 1/5. We were operating out of the Hoi An base camp during the Fall, 1967 and the Hoi An area was well known for boobytraps. We had a lot of casualties there, including good friends of mine. Larry was one of them. While many years have passed and some memories have faded, as I recall, Larry was a bright guy and he and several others were offered assignments to work in the company office, instead of humping the bush. They all declined or worked in the office but a brief time, prefering to remain with their grunt buddies and carry on with their duties. December was a brutal month for us. We left Hoi An the day after Christmas, moving north to Phu Loc.

In 1998, veterans of Charlie 1/5 assembled for a reunion and we have been meeting each year since. During our annual gathering, we plant a tree and dedicate a plaque at a memorial service held in memory of the Marines we lost. Larry, and the many other guys like him, have never been forgotten by those of us who had the honor and pleasure of knowing them. We remember them every day.

Gerry Regan
Cpl, 1st Platoon, C 1/5, 1967-68

A Note from The Virtual Wall

Lance Corporal Boice died in Quang Nam Province on 10 Dec 1967 - as did three other Marines. The four men were
  • LCpl Larry L. Boice, Bryant, IN, C Company, 1/5 Marines (killed in action)
  • LCpl Melvin Smith, New Orleans, LA, C Company, 1/5 Marines (died non-hostile)
  • LCpl Ralph M. Valencia, Monterey Park, CA, A Company, 1/7 Marines (died of wounds)
  • Pfc Felix D. Begaye, Little Water, NM, HQ Company, 7th Marines (died non-hostile)
The 1/5 Command Chronology for December 1967 contains the following entries regarding
  • Lance Corporal Melvin Smith:
    • "101725H [5:25 pm 10 Dec] - Company C Platoon Patrol at (BT 133603), while crossing stream, a member of patrol ran into difficulties. Prompt action by fellow Marines saved the drowning man, however in the process of rescuing the drowning Marine, one of the men aiding the victim was swept downstream. The body and weapon were recovered at 111430H by divers."

  • Lance Corporal Larry L. Boice:
    • "101925H [7:25 pm 10 Dec] - Company C Squad Ambush while en route to ambush site observed 2 Vietnamese running from house. As point man approached the house to investigate, a command detonated artillery round, believed to be a 155mm round, was set off. A medevac helicopter was requested. As the helicopter approached 6 rounds of small arms fire were received. Patrol suppressed enemy fire with 100-120 rounds small arms fire, 5 M-79 rounds and medevac was completed. The incident resulted in 3 USMC WIAE."
LCpl Boice died of injuries received in the mine explosion.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a cousin,
John C. Peterson
P.o. Box 6803 Ozona, Florida 34660

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IN State Index . Panel 31E

With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 02 Jul 2006
Last updated 08/06/2006