Michael Alfred Cunnion

Private First Class
United States Marine Corps
07 April 1945 - 15 July 1966
Mount Vernon, New York
Panel 09E Line 023


Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Michael Alfred Cunnion

25 May 2008

Dear Mike, Just a little note to let you know that you are not forgotten. A fine football and baseball player and an even greater man. Those who knew you were made richer. We enjoy our freedom thanks to heroes like you.

From a friend,
Don Deangelis
11639 N W 47 Court, Coral Springs, Fl. 33076

A Note from The Virtual Wall

On 15 July 1966 an aerial assault was conducted into Landing Zone Crow, about 5 miles northeast of the Rockpile in Quang Tri Province. Since LZ Crow was marginally large enough to hold four CH-46s at a time, the 24-ship assault force was divided into six sections of four aircraft each. The first two sections landed witout incident. One CH-46 from the third section landed long into a tree line but came to rest outside the LZ area. Disaster struck the fifth section when the rotor disks of two CH-46s overlapped causing severe damage to both aircraft and killing two Marines on the ground.

A CH-46A (tail number 152500) from HMM-265 was detailed to carry a reaction force to guard the three downed CH-46s at LZ Crow. According to an official USMC source

"At 1815, while inserting a reaction company to guard the three CH-46s in LZ Crow, HMM-265's EP-171, ... was hit at 1,500 feet by 12.7mm fire. Photos taken from the ground show smoke coming from the cockpit windows and flames from the rear of the aircraft. When they tried landing on Crow, smoke filled the cockpit so no one could see. They overshot the LZ and crashed ..."

Fifteen men died in the crash:

  • HMM-265, MAG-16, 1st Maw, 3rd MAF
    • Sgt Robert R. Telfer, Fonda, NY

  • A Co, 1st Engineers
  • B Co, 3rd Engineers
    • Cpl James M. Reid, Philadelphia, PA

  • E Co, 2nd Bn, 1st Marines
    • SSgt Herolin T. Simmons, Ahoskie, NC (Silver Star, 5/29/66)
    • Cpl Orson H. Case, Johnstown, NY
    • HM3 Andrew P. Chamaj, Scenery Hill, PA
    • Cpl Paul R. Chambers, Scottsboro, AL
    • Pfc James W. Cherrick, New York, NY
    • Pfc Michael A. Cunnion, Mount Vernon, NY
    • Pfc Michael A. Gooden, Bellflower, CA
    • Pfc Carl W. Schloemer, Bellefontaine Neighbors, MO
    • Pfc Gerald E. Stubstad, Chicago, IL

  • H&S Co, 2nd Bn, 1st Marines
    • HM3 Mark V. Dennis, Miamisburg, OH
Meanwhile, three more Marines died in the ground fighting:
  • H&S Co, 3rd Bn, 4th Marines
    • SSgt Paul G. Hendrix, Hartselle, AL
    • Cpl William J. Lilly, Rowayton, CT (killed when helo crashed)
    • HN John N. Morris, Meldrim, GA (killed when helo crashed)

  • K Co, 3rd Bn, 4th Marines

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a friend,
Don Deangelis
11639 N W 47 Court, Coral Springs, Fl. 33076

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 25 May 2008
Last updated 06/02/2008