Harvey Claude Reynolds

Staff Sergeant
Army of the United States
04 February 1932 - 22 October 1969
Louisville, Kentucky
Panel 17W Line 106

Combat Infantry, 2nd Award

Master Parachutist

The database page for Harvey Claude Reynolds

24 Jun 2001

I do not fear an army of lions,
if they are led by a lamb.
I do fear an army of sheep,
if they are led by a lion.
-- Alexander the Great --

Staff Sergeant Harvey C. Reynolds was a lion.

John Yeager
Frank J. McCloskey

I was a machine-gunner with the 1st platoon of Company "C," 2d Battalion (Airborne), 502d Infantry in the 1st Brigade, 101st Airborne Divsion, when Sergeant Reynolds joined our platoon. He was the first Squad Leader and later became our Platoon Sergeant.

I recall that he didn't like anything about the rear area or the state-side Army which is probably why they never promoted him. He was good in the field, hardcore and the most fearless man I've ever met. It's a shame that no one, other than his men, recognized his leadership abilities. He was a "soldier's soldier" and spoke his mind when it came to welfare of his troops.

On 18 May 67 our platoon went to the aid of an element of B Company who were ambushed on a water run. We were on hill 424 in Duc Pho province and they were in heavy contact taking casualties. Our platoon walked into a bunker complex and we immediately came under heavy fire. I was shot in the back of the head during the initial contact and someone took my machinegun, thinking I was dead.

Sergeant Reynolds showed up at my side cursing the enemy and calling for an M-79 man and his grenade launcher. The individual who shot me was still firing on us and Sergeant Reynolds was determined to get him.

What amazed and inspired me was that Sergeant Reynolds showed no fear. He wasn't hugging the ground like everyone else. He just knelt there beside me like he was bullet proof. When the M-79 man didn't show up, Sergeant Reynolds walked back through the all that firing, grabbed the M-79 and came back to me still cursing the enemy.

During his stay with me on hill 424, Sergeant Reynolds continued to engage that bunker even though he took one round through the bicep. He continually exposed himself to fire so much that his canteen and load bearing equipment were riddled with bullet holes.

During the medevac, I heard Sergeant Reynolds arguing with the Lieutenant that he just had a flesh wound and did not want to leave the field. They took him out of there kicking and screaming.

Later at the aid station, I heard him looking for a ride back out to hill 424. He was complaining about being stuck in the rear with a bunch of REMF'S when he should be out there fighting.

I'm pretty sure he got his ride because he never appeared at the evac hospital like he was supposed to.

Sergeant Reynolds paid me a visit just before I left the aid station. He came to show me his arm and all the holes the enemy had shot through his fatigue shirt.

I'll never forget Sergeant Harvey C. Reynolds, he's one of the rare ones you would follow to hell and back.

A memorial by Frank J. McCloskey

Harvey C. Reynolds was a good old boy from Florida who was our Platoon Sergeant in 1967. He was a Regular. He had made one or both of the combat jumps with the 187th Airborne Regimental Combat Team in Korea. He had also been to demolitions school.

Once, a man stepped on a "boucing betty" mine, which fires when you step off of it. He felt the plunger go down and froze. He told the rest of us that he was on a mine, and our Engineer came to the spot and dug around his boot, placed a big rock down on it as the troop took his foot out, and they moved away. The Engineer blew it in place with C-4. While the replacement of the foot with a rock was going on Sergeant Reynolds stood three feet away. He didn't have to endanger himself, but it made the two men who were involved that much more steady.

He didn't have a whole lot of education. He called the enemy bad names that were already out of date; it was like he was calling Germans "Huns." He would not have liked the idea of political correctness. He was just a good old Regular like Kipling was talking about when he wrote "The backbone of the Army is the non-commissioned man."

He was always doing things like replacing the firing caps in fragmentation grenades with the ones from smoke grenades, so they would blow instantly, and setting them out with tripwires to make booby traps. I kept away from him when he was putting them out or getting them in. When I got wounded he was up on a little rise in the ground and he yelled at me "Come up here, I can see them." I said something rude to him because that meant they could see him, too. The other writer of this memorial says they shot off his bootlaces there, but he didn't get hurt. He went back to Vietnam to do another tour and was killed. A big salute for you, Sarge.

I think he'd love it that we remembered him this long and wrote this up for him.

John Yeager, Jr

23 Mar 2007

I would like to say that I'm very proud of Staff Sergeant Reynolds for his sacrifice and service to our nation. He must have been a "Soldier's Soldier".

My brother was Sergeant William B. Bishop, Knoxville, Tn, who was with SSG Reynolds when they were both killed in action. (I just found this out while searching for information on my brother's time in Vietnam.)

I don't know anything about what exactly happened to them that day, but would like to know more. I was only told he was lost to hostile fire. I'm glad to know my brother was serving with him. I always wondered if my brother had died alone, I know now he didn't.

In my heart forever now, both of them!

Charles R. Bishop USAR
HQ Co, 844th Eng Bn, Knoxville, Tn '70-'76
Now in Port Saint Lucie, Florida
E-Mail will be forwarded by the

A Note from The Virtual Wall

187th Infantry
187th Infantry, 8th Army

In Korea the 187th Infantry Regiment (Airborne), augmented by the Thai 21st Infantry Bn, 50th AAA Bn, 674th Fld Arty Bn, and the Philippine 10th BCT, became the 187th Regimental Combat Team. The 187th RCT made two combat jumps during the Korean War. The first was made on 20 October 1950 at Sunchon and Sukchon, North Korea. The mission of the 187th was to cut the road north going to China, preventing North Korean leaders from escaping from Pyongyang, and to rescue American prisoners of war. The second jump was made on Easter Sunday, 1951 at Munsan-ni, South Korea, in order to get behind Chinese forces and block their movement north. Unless SSG Reynolds had broken service he could not have arrived in Korea in time to make the first jump.

502nd Infantry
502nd Infantry, 101st Airborne Division

503rd Infantry
503rd Infantry, 173rd Airborne Brigade
22 March - 22 October 1969

"Someone" did recognize SSG Reynolds' abilities; when he returned to Vietnam in 1969 he was assigned as the Platoon Sergeant of the Recon Platoon in the newly-formed E Company, 4th Bn, 503rd Infantry. He held that position on 22 Oct 1969, when he and SGT William B. Bishop of Knoxville, Tennessee, were killed by fragmentation wounds.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a friend,
John Yeager

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 24 Jun 2001
Last updated 08/27/2007