Willford Leon Dyer

Staff Sergeant
Army of the United States
30 November 1931 - 19 April 1968
Cleveland, Tennessee
Panel 50E Line 046


Purple Heart, Good Conduct, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Willford Leon Dyer

04 Mar 2002

This site is to honor a half-brother I never got to meet. In 1968, I lost two close friends in Viet Nam. I was yet to find out I lost a half-brother. He had made a career in the Army and had such a short time to retire. God called Leon home before he could return to his wife and family. I visited Leon's grave in 1975 and stood proud in honor of his life. Leon died for our country and knowing that fact, I can truly say I love him because he is my brother.

Betty Jean Dyer Higginbotham
2560 Palm Road, West Palm Beach, Florida 33406

06 Nov 2006

Hello Betty:

My name is Jim Hampton. I am a retired member of the National Guard. It was my privilege to know and serve with Willford. I worked for the National Guard here in Cleveland, Tennessee, at the time that he enlisted with us. It was his ambition to get back in the Active Army and not too long after he enlisted in the Guard the Army came out with a program where prior service personnel who were serving in the National Guard could return to Active Duty in Grade. This was just what he had been hoping for so he applied and was accepted. As I recall he served a stretch in Hawaii. Following that while home on leave he came to my home to visit and thank me for helping him get back on Active Duty - he was really excited about all this. Sad to say the next thing I heard he had been killed in combat. I went to the funeral home (probably Buckner Funeral Home) on Wildwood Avenue in Cleveland to pay my respects. I found your name and The Virtual Wall while surfing the Internet so I thought I would share this memory with you. He was a great guy and a lot of help to me.

Jim Hampton

James F. Hampton

A Note from The Virtual Wall

1st Infantry Division units lost nine men in Binh Duong Province on 19 April 1968, but The Virtual Wall cannot determine if the losses were in a single or separate engagements. The men were
  • A Co, 1st Bn, 26th Infantry:
    • SSG Freddie Whitaker, Union, NJ;
    • SGT Russell L. Thompson, Memphis, TN;
    • SP4 Juan Gomez-Rivera, Cabo Rojo, PR;
    • PFC Keven T. Direen, Albuquerque, NM;
    • PFC Dennis R. Hartpence, Edison, OH; and
    • PFC Jerry V. McDonald, Belleville, AR.

  • B Trp, 1st Sqdn, 4th Cavalry:
    • SSG Willford L. Dyer, Cleveland, TN;
    • SGT Jenies I. Mobley, Grimesland, NC; and
    • PFC Charles C. Beard, Santa Fe, TN.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
his half sister,
Betty Jean (Dyer) Higginbotham
2560 Palm Road, West Palm Beach, Florida 33406

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 4 Mar 2002
Last updated 11/19/2006