Robert Eugene Musselman
Private First Class
Army of the United States
Richmond, Indiana
June 17, 1942 to October 25, 1967
ROBERT E MUSSELMAN is on the Wall at Panel 28E, Line 69

Robert E Musselman
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In the Kokomo Tribune newspaper on Friday, October 27, 1967, page 11, information was published for two Hoosiers who were killed in action in Vietnam:


The obituary above also mentions 2LT James Joseph Mallon, Indianapolis, Indiana.

-- The Virtual Wall

During the period of 21 June 1967 to 3 February 1968, the 4th Battalion (Mechanized), 23rd Infantry Regiment was again engaged in security detail for yet another series of Land Clearing Operations (Operation BARKING SANDS), this time in the Filhol Plantation, Hobo Woods and the Iron Triangle. The purpose of this clearing operation was to eliminate the dense, existing vegetation so as to deny cover to VC/NVA units operating in those historic strongholds.

Clearing operations intensified when Operation KUNIA was opened on 16 September 1967. The 1st Brigade of the 25th Infantry Division, moved with four battalions, (2nd Battalion, 14th Infantry; 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry; 4th Battalion (Mech), 23rd Infantry; and 3rd Battalion, 22nd Infantry into the HO BO Woods by land and airmobile combat assaults. Search and Destroy operations were conducted in preparation for the arrival of a land clearing team of 30 Rome Plows (a bulldozer with a sharpened blade set at an angle for jungle clearing operations), the 27th Land Clearing Team, 168th Engineer Battalion, placed in direct support of the 25th Infantry Division to clear the HO BO Woods on 19 September 1967. It remained with the Battalion until 3 February 1968.

Land clearing began on the 20th of September. The objective of Operation KUNIA was to eliminate the HO BO Woods as a safe haven for the Viet Cong through extensive clearing operations and the destruction of VC base camps and forces. The Operation continued through October 1967 and Operation Barking Sands was continued as a Search and Destroy Operation and security for jungle clearing operations. By the end of October, 9,645 acres of land was cleared by using the Rome Plows and Bangalore torpedoes in areas inaccessible to the plows.

During this period, the 25th had three clearing operations: "Barking Sands" - the cutting of the area of the Hobo Woods generally north of Trang Bang; "Atlanta" - which leveled the once impregnable Iron Triangle; and finally "Saratoga" - which encompassed the Filhol Rubber Plantation and additional portions of the Hobo Woods.

At the end of October, although not specifically mentioned in the 25th Infantry Division Lessons Learned report, from other information, it appears 3 men from C Company, were killed in the same firefight with the enemy during these land clearing operations.

The 3 men from C Company who were KIA on October 25, 1967 day were:

-- The Virtual Wall

Information shows that Robert Eugene Musselman was survived by his wife Joy, and his parents Kenneth Gayle Musselman (Apr. 25, 1921 - May 23, 2005), a US Army Tech 4 in WWII and Catherine (Bickel) Musselman (Aug. 21, 1927 - Oct. 25, 1996).

He was also survived by five brothers, one who was killed in Vietnam just 18 months later: Lance Corporal Harold Earl Musselman (May 1, 1949 - Mar. 3, 1969) USMC Vietnam; Kenneth Paul Musselman (Dec. 22, 1956 - Feb. 20, 2007) US Air Force veteran; Hugh E., Mark D., and Daniel.

He also was survived by 6 sisters: Linda L., Doris A., Pamela, Betty, Catherine S., and Kendra G.

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