Wade Lawrence Groth

Staff Sergeant
Army of the United States
14 May 1947 - 08 September 1978
Greenville, Michigan
Panel 39E Line 005

UH-1 Huey

Army Aircrew

Air Medal, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign
Wade L Groth

The database page for Wade Lawrence Groth


21 Nov 2001


I have your MIA bracelet. My mother gave it to me when I was about 10 years old. She had gotten one for herself and one for me. At that age I did not really understand the true meaning and the impact it would have on me. But I wore it nonetheless, and I still wear it, to this day, thirty years later. And now I realize what a great gift it was that she gave me. When I was in Washington D.C. I found your name on the Wall. I took a picture and have it in a frame. Wade, know this, you are not forgotten. And every day that I am alive, so will you be, because I will continue to wear this bracelet and remember the sacrifice you made for us.

I live in Chicago. I don't know if you have family still in Wisconsin or elsewhere - I don't even know what you look like, but you are family to me. I have visited the Vietnam Museum here in Chicago in your memory. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving - I am thankful for the part you have played in my life.


From one who wears his MIA bracelet,
Lyn Dudek
10723 W. Fifth Avenue Cutoff, #403, Countryside, Illinois 60525

3 Apr 2004

I have been meaning to update my memorial to Wade for some time now. So much has happened since I first dedicated this page to Wade. Where to begin?

Like I said in the first memorial, when I was about 13, my mother gave me the gift of Wade's bracelet. She had gotten one for herself and one for me. When she said "pick which ever one you want" - I chose Wade's. Who knew then the wheels of fate that were set into motion? Who could have known that when I chose Wade's bracelet it would take me down a path some 30 years later? A path that has taken me into the lives of some extraordinary people, that made me a part of an extended family of people who I feel honored and humbled just to know, and have come to love.

Since the first memorial, I have met Wade's wonderful mother and family. The picture on the memorial page is courtesy of Neal, who served with and was a friend of Wade's, and who is now a dear friend to me. But that would not have happened if not for Sandy. Sandy is Jerry Roe's cousin and Jerry was with Wade, Alan Gunn, and Harry Brown on Dustoff 90. She is like a sister to me. I recently attended another Dustoff reunion and could go on and on. But the best thing that I can do is to continue to wear my bracelet with pride, for Wade and the others, and with a whole new admiration for the people who served in Vietnam. I thanked Wade in my prior memorial, for his courage, his bravery and service to our country. It goes beyond that. Now I want to say thank you Wade for my many new blessings that I would not have if not for "knowing" you. In holding you in my heart and keeping you in my life, you have given me a life filled with new and lasting friendships. You are loved and remembered by so many. I am just one.


12 March 2001

These men served their country honorably and well, giving the ultimate sacrifice while carrying out a humanitarian mission. Though their memories reside in their homeland in the minds of their loving families and friends, their remains - if any still exist - will lie anonymously on foreign soil, another part of the sad reality of war.

- Robert Destatte -

From Captain Jerry Roe's cousin,
Sandy Kilgo

31 July 2002


We flew together many times. You were the crewchief and I was the medic. You have been in my thoughts every day since you went down on February 12, 1968. We searched for you, Jerry, Alan, and Brownie for many days. We never saw anything. We searched low level over VC Mountain where your chopper was found two years later. Why couldn't we see it then? That will haunt me for the rest of my life. What happened to you guys? Did you live through the crash? Could we have gotten you out alive if we had seen the chopper two days later while we were searching?

In 1997 I began searching for all of our 50th Med Det guys via the internet. I found many that first weekend. The first question that they all had was "Do you know what happened to Dustoff 90?"

We had our first reunion of the 50th Med Det in February 2000 in San Antonio. Twenty-five guys attended. It was a very emotional time for all of us. In preparing for the reunion, I put together a video from pictures of our year in Vietnam. I dedicated that video to you, Jerry, Alan, and Brownie. We all cried watching it at our reunion dinner. We want you guys back and to attend our next reunion.

I've been to the WALL in Washington DC probably one hundred times. Every visit I place a small poster in front of Panel 39E showing our 50th patch, your names and a story about your last mission. Then I step back and watch others read about you. My dream is that one day while I'm there you will walk up and say "Neal, I'm here." We had our second reunion at the WALL on Memorial Day 2001. We placed a large poster and a wreath in front of Panel 39. Take care, Wade. You were a great buddy. You will never be forgotten.

Neal A. Stanley

07 Feb 2004

I, too, wear a bracelet for Wade Lawrence Groth and have been doing so for about 17 years. I am a Vietnam veteran and was in-country the same time as Wade, but I never knew him.

I acquired my bracelet when I was a member of a Vietnam veterans group in Benton Harbor, Michigan, and we all decided to honor a POW/MIA from our home state and wear the bracelets.

I still wear mine every day -- and wear it proudly. I think I did my part, but Wade and those like him gave the ultimate sacrifice and I love them for it.

Gerald E. Elkins

07 Aug 2005


My mother gave me your bracelet when I was a child in the seventies. I wore it for many years until it was, sadly, lost in the water at Balsam Lake, Wisconsin. But I've never forgotten your name and the date of your loss. You will be forever in my mind. Thank you for your service and sacrifice for us.

E-Mail will be forwarded by the

12 Aug 2005

Wade, we think of you often. I came across this memorial to you by accident but am so glad I did! I'm amazed at those who still care and remember. The last time I saw your mom and sisters was unfortuntately at your dad's funeral. We know you were there too! There were a lot of Wade stories about Chagrin Falls, the souped up Chevvy, etc. Stll missing you.

Your Cousin, David

05 Apr 2006

I wanted to update my memorial to my cousin Wade "Rusty" Groth by thanking a couple of people who have contacted me since seeing my first message to Wade. First to Neal Stanley, a dear friend of Wade's - Thank you for the pictures of your visits to Washington and Wade's memorial at Arlington. Your kindness and remembrance is appreciated. Next, to a wonderful lady name Carol Silverthorne - Carol sent me Wade's bracelet that she had had for years and wanted to stay in the family. I assure you it always will! Everyone's kind words and memorials to Wade are deeply appreciated. He is always in our thoughts.

From his cousin,
David Groth

01 Jun 2007

Wade, I check the site fairly often for any new posts. It dawned on me today that it in a very short time it will be almost 40 years since your loss. A POW/MIA flag still flies at our home in your memory. Even with all the troubles in Iraq and the middle east, we hope you are at peace.

From his cousin,
David Groth

01 Jan 2007

Wade, I was just cleaning out some boxes from high school (the 1970s) and ran across your MIA bracelet that my mother gave me about the time my second cousin Bobby flew to Vietnam to serve. Mine says

"SPEC.5 WADE GROTH. 2-12-68"

If it wasn't for the internet, I would never have known who you were, how you became missing or that you have a small but dedicated fan club out there. Rest in peace.


28 May 2007

Thirty years later! I'm not even sure how a POW/MIA bracelet arrived in my hands back in the 70's, but I do remember wearing it throughout my high school years and forever in my mind was embedded the image: "SPEC 5 WADE GROTH". Today, more than ever, I have a much deeper understanding of the meaning of Memorial Day. As I tuned into the Today Show there was a segment on the spiritual meaning of Memorial Day. Wade Groth immediately came to mind as did many, so many, of my family members and friends who have and do serve in the Military. On a hunch I keyed in Wade Groth and was so sad to learn the story of the man forever etched in my mind, but at the same time so grateful to know the Internet provided the opportunity to find him and to let his loved ones know that I, too, wore his bracelet for so many years and how many days this man occupied this young girl's teenage mind. I am grateful for his service and saddened to learn of his loss. May your family be filled with pride and may you rest in peace. Simply put, Wade Groth, thank you.

Laurie Case
Syracuse, NY

01 Oct 2007

I too wore Wade's MIA bracelet for years. When I found this memorial I cried for him and all the others who didn't come back. His bracelet will be passed down in my family from one generation to the next. He, and the others, will not be forgotten!

Pat Arner

Notes from The Virtual Wall

On 12 Feb 1968, a UH-1H (hull number 66-17027) of the 50th Medical Detachment launched on a night medical evacuation mission from Ban Me Thuot, SVN, for the Gia Nghai Special Forces camp. The aircraft's crew consisted of Ban Me Thuot provided radar flight following for the flight, which was uneventful until the helicopter disappeared for radar about 20 minutes after take-off. At that time the aircraft was overhead a mountainous region of Quang Duc Province.

Airborne and ground searches were conducted in the area, but neither the helicopter nor its crew was found. The four men were placed in "Missing in Action" status.

Beginning in late 1973, the Secretary of the Army approved Presumptive Findings of Death for the aircrewmen, including Staff Sergeant Wade Groth (09 Sep 1978). As of 21 November 2001, none of the four men have been located.

Additional information is available on the
POW Network

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
one who wears his MIA bracelet,
Lyn Dudek
10723 W. Fifth Avenue Cutoff, #403, Countryside, Illinois 60525

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 21 Nov 2001
Last updated 11/24/2007