John D Martin

Army of the United States
21 June 1945 - 13 July 1969
Lamesa, Texas
Panel 21W Line 113

Combat Infantry

Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign
John D Martin

The database page for John D Martin

20 Apr 2004

John was an only child and the only one from his family to graduate from college. After graduating from Lamesa High School, Lamesa, Texas in 1963, he earned his B. S. in Transportation Systems from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas.

After graduating from college he received his draft notice and made the most of it. He completed infantry training and attended the NCO academy, where he was promoted to Sergeant. He then received his orders for Vietnam. He arrived in country in February 1969. As a squad leader, he refused to order anyone to walk point, a job he took for himself. It was doing this that cost him his life when he stepped on a mine.

A friend wrote about the eulogy of many who were killed in Vietnam:

"I suspect John would have had an ordinary life, much like the rest of us. He would have married, and had children, worked and complained about taxes. But the world, and our country, has been a poorer place since his death and the loss of the good will be carried with him everywhere he goes. He was irreplaceable, but who among those who died was not? It seems that the losses suffered in our youth were more severe than those we have in middle age. We are now insulated by our families, but in those days, our friends were our family. Vietnam fragmented that family. Damned War!"

John is remembered by his friends, his community and by the Permian Basin Vietnam Memorial located at the Midland International Airport, Midland, Texas.

From a PBVVM representative,
Billy M. Brown
4015 Melody Lane, Odessa, Texas 79762

29 May 2006

I was only a young girl when John D. was drafted into the military, but I remember him so well. So handsome and polite. Our parents were good friends. They had taught him to be well mannered, although I believe he would have been without any training. He was a good man and had such a bright future, as so many young men during the Viet Nam years. After his death, his parents gave me his tennis racket complete with the racket guard where he had printed his name. I am proudly displaying that racket in my home and never let the chance go by without telling someone who it belonged to. Thank you John D. for your sacrifice for me and my family.

From a friend,
Judy Whitehead Martin

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 20 Apr 2004
Last updated 08/10/2009