David K Johnson

Army of the United States
15 January 1948 - 26 May 1970
Flint, Michigan
Panel 10W Line 104


Army Aircrew

Purple Heart, Air Medal, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for David K Johnson

26 Mar 1997

Davey and Eddie

Davey Johnson and Eddie Williams. Two of the best in one of the best units: Eagle Dustoff. Both were crew chiefs. Our hooch consisted of them, their respective medics (who I haven't remembered yet, just faces but those are clear) and myself.

Eddie was the typical all american kid: blond, blue eyes, had that look that mothers loved and fathers hated. Easy with a smile and showed no fear. We had all our plans set for when we got out. Each was going to go home for a couple weeks to see the folks. Then I was going to his home town where he had a friend that sold motorcycles cheap. After that we were off to see America via the old Route 66. You know the plan, work small jobs, party every night, break all the young ladies' hearts.

Eddie was a good crew chief, treated that Huey like a man in love with his machine. His last pilot drove him a little crazy because he liked to bush hop, but Eddie had faith in that machine and his own skills. And Eddie liked to show me things. He showed me how to cinch your strap so when you stood on the skids you could get just the right angle to lean out and be able to see what the rescue hoist was doing. He showed me the Bhudda in the valley for the first time.

Eddie never seemed to let things get him too much, but I know that was just surface. If things had gone bad, a rescue had turned out futile, he got that glazy look that many had; but with Eddie there was always that smile and laughing words.

On that last night, Eddie and I sat listening to his music talking our plans just three months off.

Davey Johnson was a big man. Had that walk that many big men have; you know, that kind of stiff legged walk where his whole body seemed to swivel from side to side. The only thing bigger than his body was his heart. Davey knew that my family never wrote and his family was one of those really close knit ones. First, he got his mother writing to me and sending ME my very own care packages. Then his sister starts writing me and then all her girl friends at the university. Mail got to be a good time.

Davey liked to wrestle, I guess cause he was so big and could. I remember one day he started to wrestle with me. I didn't really want to but Davey never did hear too well when he wanted to do something. After a few minutes of pain, I decided enough. I got Davey up on my shoulders and then dropped him. Never piss off a bear. Davey picked me up, tossed me through the ammo box shelves and stomped off. Guess he didn't like the airplane ride.

After Eddie's death, Davey cut up the tail rotor chain from Eddie's ship and made each of us a non-removable bracelet. I know that may sound a little disrespectful, but believe me it wasn't. The chain had been a part of Eddie's ship, and that machine had been a part of Eddie.

About a year ago, I decided to try and find Davey; the time was right. Someone told me that if I contacted the army for a roster of my unit, got Davey's SSN, that I might be able to trace him. I did, and I did. Fate had decided that Davey should join Eddie and the two medics (guys forgive me, I do remember you).

When next we meet, don't laugh at how old my body got, my memories are still young. Now my soul? That has gotten older than God himself.

Guys, look down and meet some new friends of mine. There's Gene'o and C4, H, Mo and Druid, Doghandler and Carol, Mike, Trixie, Monte, Brazilla, Habu, Demaj, Saint, Snake, Art, Parson, Ken and some others. They knew you guys, you knew them.


The original memorial is located at

4 Dec 2004

I never knew or got to meet SGT David Keith Johnson nor his pilots, CW2 Edward Terry O'Brien and WO1 Bruce Elliot Graham. However, their medic, SGT William Edward Hawkins, was my best friend. They paid the Ultimate price trying to save the lives of other brothers on the ground. As I understand it, they had to hover and drop a Stokes litter to pick up the wounded as it was too dense to land and the squad that the wounded were in was still taking fire.

Billy's fiance told me that she'd recieved a letter from the wounded soldier, who'd just been lashed into the Stokes litter and was about to be lifted, when the RPG hit their chopper. He'd written her as soon after the incident as he was able, to let her know how it'd happened. I've never known how accurate it was, as I've never been in contact with those that were there at the time.

What I do know is that what they did required incredible valor, complete control of their fear, and great Love. (Our Lord said it best when he said: "No greater Love has any man, but that he should lay down his life for another.")

I would love to hear from anyone that served with them at the time they were in the same crew ... Dick Sweet, if you would please contact me. I will be putting more information about William Edward Hawkins in a memorial for him.

May God Bless these, and all of our Service Men and Women who have, and continue to go in Harm's Way on our behalf.

From a friend of one of Dave's crewmates,
William S. Johnson III (Corky)

A Note from The Virtual Wall

Four men of the 326th Medical Battalion died when their UH-1H (tail number 69-15139) was hit in the fuel cell area by a rocket-propelled grenade, crashed, and burned.
  • CW2 Edward Terry O'Brien, pilot
  • WO1 Bruce Elliot Graham, copilot
  • SGT William Edward Hawkins, medic
  • SGT David Keith Johnson, crew chief

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a buddy,
Dick Sweet
E-Mail address not available
26 Mar 1997

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Last updated 11/13/2010