Paul Holland Mitchell, Jr
Lance Corporal
M CO, 3RD BN, 4TH MARINES, 3RD MARDIV, III MAF
United States Marine Corps
Mentor, Ohio
June 16, 1946 to October 05, 1966
PAUL H MITCHELL Jr is on the Wall at Panel 11E, Line 49

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Paul H Mitchell
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On October 29, 2012, Deborah only wrote in her email sending photos: "The Virtual Wall is incredible. Thank you." When The Virtual Wall asked her about the type of relationship she had with Paul Mitchell, Deborah responded with:

"Paul Mitchell and I were dear friends from childhood. He introduced my first husband and I and had agreed to be the godfather of our first child-unfortunately, he died in October 1966 and she wasn't born until April 1967. She was the first child named for him (Paula Michelle ...) and he also has nephews named in his behalf."

"He is buried in Kirtland, Ohio along with his parents who were brought here to be buried near him. His brother and sister live out of state so I care for all the graves in their behalf. We had 2 Paul Mitchells at our school and one of the teachers starting calling ours "Mike." It took and that is how he was known and remembered by our classmates and eventually by his folks. Our "Mike" quit school prior to graduating. I think he was in 11th grade or had just started his senior year when he left."

"In 2004, I attended my 40 year class reunion. In the course of the evening activities, they read off the names of classmates who had died since graduation. We had a moment of silence in their behalf. Mike's name was omitted. When I asked about it, they said he didn't graduate with us and so wasn't in our 'class'. That really upset me - he could fight for us and die for us but he wasn't one of us?"

"It took me several years, but I completed my mission to have him awarded his high school diploma - and to have it state specifically that he was a member of the Mentor High School graduating class of 1964. He was finally awarded that diploma and I accepted it on his behalf along with several other classmates attending the ceremony. I sent the diploma on to his sister."

"So, I guess if I were to state my relationship to him at this point, I am his caretaker, his defender, and his forever friend. I have included a couple of other photos. One I took in the 7th Grade. He received an award for Legion basketball and was so proud of his achievement. The other was of him with 4 other friends who were en route to Paris Island in 1965."

"At the time Mike died, he was survived by his parents Grace and Paul Mitchell, his sister Patty and his brother Tom. Tom was serving in the Navy and unfortunately not able to come home for his brother's funeral. I thought that was very sad. I don't recall if his grandparents were still living at that time or not."

-- Deborah Fazenbaker, November 14, 2012

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Photo of Paul Holland before Vietnam.

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On the morning of 5 October 1966, during Operation Prarie, K Company was providing covering fire for Company M that was preparing for and assaulting Hill 484. At 10:20 hours, the Battalion Command Post (CP) was hit with two incoming "short" tank rounds. At 11:00 hours, the journal entry noted "Incoming rounds believed to be tank's". The results of that action were 10 K Company Marines wounded and 3 killed during the action. Corporal Vicich, one of the 10 wounded marines, died later that day on the hospital ship USS Repose.

The 4 Marine casualties of this event were:

Later, at noon, Company M was moving up to Hill 484 in order to assualt, when the company was taken under fire by automatic weapons and grenades from dug in enemy positions. The company returned fire with small arms, M26 hand grenades (M26s), M-60 Machine Guns (M60s), and Light AntiArmor Weapons (LAAWs). They overcame the enemy.

The results of this action were 16 M Company Marines wounded and 3 killed. The enemy had 10 confirmed killed and another 15 estimated killed. The Marines captured NVA and ChiCom weapons and equipment.

One more Marine casualty as part of Operation Prairie happened on this day. LCPL David Lee Owens, Headquarters and Services Company, from Holyoke, Massachusetts was a passenger in a truck that overturned.

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THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY
WASHINGTON

THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES

takes pride in presenting the

SILVER STAR MEDAL

posthumously to

CORPORAL PAUL H. MITCHELL, JR.
UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS

for service as set forth in the following

CITATION: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as an Automatic Rifleman with the Second Platoon, Company M, Third Battalion, Fourth Marines, Third Marine Division (Rein.), FMF, in connection with combat operations against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam on 5 October 1966. Painfully wounded at the onset of the assault on his company during Operation PRAIRIE, Lance Corporal Mitchell was sent to the rear for treatment. Immediately after treatment, he took his weapon and returned to action, heroically delivering effective fire on enemy positions. When he observed his squad leader attempting to evacuate a wounded comrade, he unhesitatingly moved to a more exposed position to assist him. Noting that his wounded comrade was in intense pain, Lance Corporal Mitchell, disregarding his own safety, courageously stood up in the midst of intense enemy fire and picked up the wounded Marine. He succeeded in moving the wounded Marine to the rear, but was fatally wounded himself. Lance Corporal Mitchell, by his bold initiative, heroic actions and grave concern for others, risked his life to save that of another, thereby upholding the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.



FOR THE PRESIDENT,


//s//SECRETARY OF THE NAVY
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-- The Virtual Wall


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