George Arthur Essary

United States Marine Corps
26 December 1947 - 07 June 1968
Chattanooga, Tennessee
Panel 59W Line 022


Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for George Arthur Essary

16 Jan 2008

George, I can't remember you from high school. You were in my sister's class, had a lot of Marine friends in the service then and now. You did your best. God bless you.

From a friend and fellow vet,
John Ralph Price, OSC, USNR (Ret)

A Note from The Virtual Wall

On 07 June 1968 the 1st Bn, 26th Marines were conducting a sweep along the Bon Song River. Alpha 1/26 was providing a screening force along the river while Delta 1/26 was moving through the hills along the river. Charlie 1/26 was in echelon behind Delta, with the Command Group and H&S Company bringing up the rear.

As Delta 1/26 crested a ridgeline they took fire from a trenchline. The company established a base of fire, flanked the trenchline, and forced the NVA to withdraw - but they didn't withdraw far; a second set of fortifications lay only 50 yards behind the first. Charlie 1/26 sent help and Delta buckled down to assaulting the second trench line - and once again forced the NVA from their lines.

This action, though costly, was only a prelude. The NVA troops engaged by Delta 1/26 were a covering force for the NVA main body, which withdrew into the Alpha 1/26 position - and were engaged by the Alpha 1/26 Marines in a bloody fight. By the time the NVA escaped through the gap between Alpha's flank and the oncoming Delta Marines, 20 Marines and 2 sailors were dead:

  • A Company:
    • 2ndLt Paul M. McGrath, Rye, NY
    • SSgt Donald M. Cuff, Wilmington, DE
    • Cpl George A. Essary, Chattanooga, TN
    • Cpl Jerome D. Kupperschmidt, Sandwich, IL
    • Cpl Gregory A. Shelley, Palisades Park, NJ
    • LCpl Edward L. Bradford, Westville, OK
    • LCpl Kevin M. Coyne, Silver Spring, MD
    • LCpl Michael W. Travis, Sweetser, IN
    • Pfc Michael P. Becker, Omaha, NE
    • Pfc Jerry N. Christman, Williams, AZ
    • Pfc Carl M. Middlebrooks, Baltimore, MD
    • Pfc Alton L. Staples, Cincinnati, OH
    • Pfc Ernest L. Wesley, Stockbridge, GA

  • C Company:
    • Cpl David E. Dixon, Miami, FL

  • D Company:
  • H&S Company:
    • HM3 Ramon Leyba, Albuquerque, NM (H&S Co, w/ Alpha 1/26)
    • HN Ronald E. Rockefeller, Tivoli, NY
In a tragic coincidence, Lance Corporal Michael Travis's elder brother, Corporal Edmund B. Travis, an artilleryman with Alpha 1/13 Marines, had been killed in action on 27 June 1967 while serving on a Forward Observer team with the 1/26 Marines at Khe Sanh.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a friend and fellow vet,
John Ralph Price

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 16 Jan 2008
Last updated 03/01/2008