Richard James Leahy

Lance Corporal
United States Marine Corps
26 July 1946 - 06 March 1969
Albany, NY
Panel 30W Line 056


Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Richard James Leahy

13 Oct 1998

There were about 7 of my brother's friends that went to Vietnam. They all graduated together from high school. Three of them were killed, one came home with a plate in his head and had to learn to walk and talk all over again and another got shot in the arm but luckily recovered. I was only 13 at the time that my brother was killed but I can remember vividly the day the Marine came with the telegram for my parents. I can remember when we heard his friend Rich Leahy was killed and also his friend Mike De Marco. I remembered wondering when is it going to stop? How could this happen with one small group of friends?

I pray every day that my daughter and son will never know what it is like to experience a war. I wonder how my mom and dad kept their sanity, you don't realize how important your children are to you until you have some of your own.

My mother, Dorothea Rockenstyre, has been the president of the local Gold Star Mothers organization in Albany, NY as well as the New York State President of the Gold Star Mothers. She stays very active in this organization to help her deal with the loss of her son. We are very proud that my brother wanted to serve his country. At the dedication of our local Vietnam memorial a reporter asked me what it was like to see my brother's name on the memorial, the only response I could think of was, obviously I wish his name wasn't there.

Thank you again for this memorial to the Vietnam vets that lost their lives. We miss them terribly but it helps to know that they will be remembered for their courage.

From Richard Rockenstyre's sister,
Ruth Santabarbara

Top of Page

Virtual Wall icon

Back to
To alpha index L
NY State Index . Panel 30W

Contact Us

With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Channing Prothro, former CAP Marine
Last updated 08/10/2009