Gary Neal OlsowskiLance Corporal
CAP 3-2-5, CACO 3-2, 3RD CAG, III MAF
United States Marine Corps
23 May 1948 - 17 January 1969
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The database page for Gary Neal Olsowski
I was in Boot Camp Platoon 335 Feb 1968 with this Marine. I pass this way with respect and honor his loss this day.
I was the Corpsman who was in Gary's unit on Jan. 17, 1969. I did not know Gary very well. The night we were hit the combined 2 CAG units were across the street from each other. We had people missing in the rear or on R&R. It was the year after the big TET offensive and we were standing a lot of watches at night and patrols during the day. This was to be a night to get some rest.
The CAP units provided support for projects in the villages like fixing small bridges, houses as well as protecting the people and food supplies, and we ran a small hospital. At night we would fade away into the village surroundings to set up ambushes to protect the village and its food supplies. Our main job I always felt outside of watching out for each other was to build relationships with the Vietnamese people. I don't think the Marines in the CAP units ever received the credit they deserved. Most people don't really know we existed. Gary was one of the good guys who tried to make a difference. I am sure to some of the people in that village he did and I know to the Marines he served he was the best. I will never forget that day Jan. 17, 1969.
A Note from The Virtual WallThe 3rd Combined Action Group Chronology for January 1969 contains the following entry:
"On 170157H Jan69 [1:57 am, 17 Jan 1969] at coord ZD145009 CAP 3-2-5 had their patrol base attacked with B-40s and Chi Com grenades immediately after the security observed 4 VC. Results: 2 USMC/KIA, 4 USMC/WIA (Evac), 2 USMC/WIA (minor)"
The two Marines killed in the attack were LCpl Richard T. Culp, Akron, Ohio, and LCpl Gary N. Olsowski, Dallas, Texas.
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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 15 Jan 2007
Last updated 08/10/2009