Michael Gustave Rindone

Private First Class
United States Marine Corps
16 December 1947 - 20 June 1968
Council Bluffs, Iowa
Panel 55W Line 009

Michael Rindone

Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, RVN Military Merit, RVN Gallantry Cross, Vietnam Campaign

The database page for Michael Gustave Rindone

06 May 2005

In May of 1996, I went back to my hometown of Council Bluffs, Iowa. I had been an active duty Marine for 16+ years and hadn't been home much since joining the Corps. I decided pay my respects to family members who were buried at one of the local cemeteries. As I was walking through the grounds, I happened to look down and see the headstone for a PFC Michael G. Rindone.

This immediately brought back long forgotten memories of a summer day in 1968 when, as an 11 year old boy, I saw PFC Rindone's obituary and photo in the local paper. Twenty-eight years later, I now remembered my family being distraught over the loss of a neighborhood child. After the viewing, which I did not attend, I remember my Aunt saying, "Did you see the white gloves? I think he was shot in the hands." Emotion poured over me as I realized for the first time that Michael Rindone was a United States Marine. And for the first time in my still ongoing career, I fell in love with the Marine Corps.

I have had the opportunity to visit "the Wall" several times. What a proud tribute to PFC Rindone and over 58,000 other young men and women who make our Country great and strong. Semper Fidelis, PFC Rindone.

Richard L. Williams
Master Gunnery Sergeant, USMC

1st Battalion, 9th Marines
3rd Marine Division (Rein) FMF
FPO San Francisco 96602

1 July 1968

Mr. and Mrs. Peter P. Rindone
Council Bluffs, Iowa 51501

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Rindone:

It is difficult for me to express the regrets and sorrow felt by the Marines of this company over the recent death of your son, Private First Class Michael G. Rindone, U. S. Marine Corps on 20 June 1968 in Quang Tri Province, Republic of Vietnam.

Michael, as you know, was a fire team leader in our first platoon. On 20 June 1968, the company was participating in a sweep and destroy mission in the vicinity of Nui Ho Ke in Quang Tri Province in the Republic of Vietnam. At approximately 9:10 a.m. Michael received shrapnel wounds to the neck, right shoulder and both legs from an enemy mortar. He was immediately administered first aid by the company corpsman and flown, within minutes, to the hospital ship U. S. S. Sanctuary. All available medical aid was given Michael but he failed to rally and died of his wounds at 11:20 a.m. Michael received the ministrations of Chaplain L. F. Rice, Commander, a U. S. Navy Chaplain, just before his death.

A memorial service will be held for Michael at the earliest possible opportunity to enable the officers and men of this company to pay their last respects.

Michael was one of the finest Marines I have ever known. His exemplary conduct, leadership, and singular determination to do every job well were qualities that all of us respected. We will miss him and hope you will find some comfort in knowing this.

If there is anything I can do, please feel free to write.

Very Sincerely,

First Lieutenant, U. S. Marine Corps

28 Jun 2006

I would just like to thank Gunny Williams for all he has done for my family. I never got to meet my Uncle Mike, and although I never met him he is my hero. Through extended research the Gunny has not only helped my family, but has gained a great respect from me. I wish him a swift return and Semper Fi

From his niece,
Brandi Brown

From The Virtual Wall:
Master Gunnery Sergeant Richard Williams began a tour of duty in Iraq in January 2006.

A Note from The Virtual Wall

From the 1st Bn, 9th Marines, Command Chronology for June 1968:
"On 18 June 1968, the Battalion departed Camp Carroll for operations in the Cam Hung area in the vicinity of grid squares YD 0960 to YD 1060. On 20 June, the Battalion returned to Camp Carroll."
During those three days - 18-20 June - the 1/9 Marines lost 18 men. The Command Chronology contains the following description of the landing conducted in the Cam Hung area:
"On 18 June at 0600, 1/9 was staged at Camp Carroll in helo teams in preparation for the battalion lift [which] began at 0730. 3 landing zones were established. The areas were prep fired with artillery and screened by smoke from aircraft just prior to the battalion's entering the area. Comapny A and Company D were lifted to the landing zone "WREN" at grid YD077638, Company C and the command group with units of H&S to LZ "GULL" at YD085645 and Company B and CO to LZ "OWL" at YD001636. Prior to completion of the lift the battalion began receiving enemy 82mm mortar fire from as many as 3 enemy positions which were unknown, which did inflict friendly casualties. The lift was completed at approx 0820. Enemy mortar fire continued. 1/9's units were unable to move from the areas pending the arrival of medevac helicopters. A total of [blank] KIA and [blank] WIA were sustained as a result of the enemy fire, the last casualty being evacuated at 1315."
The companies moved out of their respective LZs as their casualties were evacuated, with "A" and "D" Companies moving first, and by late afternoon most units had secured their respective objectives and established night defensive positions. Mortar and occasional small arms fire had been received throughout the day, but air and artillery strikes had reduced the level of enemy activity and the Marines had assaulted, captured, and destroyed two bunker complexes, the second at 2130H. After nightfall sporadic enemy mortar fire continued, and "A" Company received a ground probe. At 2322H, "D" Company and the Command Post were hit by 60mm mortar fire from two directions; although the Marines responded with organic weapons, artillery, and a "Spooky" gunship, the incoming fire killed two Marines and wounded 14 others before ceasing. Overall, 13 Marines had been killed in action on 18 June.

At 0930H on the 19th, the battalion displaced from its night defensive positions, with all units sweeping from their NDPs toward their final objectives, Hill 52 and the north bank of the Cam Lo River. Two NDPs were established for the night of 19/20 June, with "A" and "B" at Hill 52 and "C", "D", and the command group north of the river. Although enemy fire was taken through the day, casualties were much lighter than on the 18th - an additional four Marines, with a greater number of wounded.

After a relatively quiet night, "D" Company and the Command Group displaced at 0730H, moving to a point on Route 9 where they boarded trucks to return to Camp Carroll. Companies C, B, and A displaced in succession, with all units of 1/9 back at Camp Carroll by 1300H, 20 June.

The final loss of the sweep occurred about 0900 as Alpha 1/9 was moving toward the Route 9 pick-up point, when Pfc Michael Rindone was severely wounded. Although evacuated to the hospital ship USS SANCTUARY, Pfc Rindone died of his injuries at 1120.

The 18 men who died during the Cam Hung sweep were

  • A Company:
    • Pfc Patrick A. Connelly, Green Bay, WI
    • Pfc John R. Dowling, Akron, IA
    • Pfc Michael G. Rindone, Council Bluffs, IA

  • B Company:
    • SSgt Robert B. Buchanan, Baltimore, MD
    • Cpl Clarence V. Mobley, Winnabow, NC
    • LCpl Clayton H. Johnson, New Orleans, LA

  • C Company:
    • SSgt Earl Thomas, Cleveland, OH
    • LCpl Calvin Golden, Chicago, IL
    • LCpl David J. Marsh, New York, NY
    • LCpl Randy L. Mathias, Bountiful, UT
    • LCpl Donald E. Whiters, Wichita, KS
    • Pfc Litael Jordan, Los Angeles, CA
    • Pvt Bobby R. Lane, Goldsboro, NC
    • Pvt Anthony R. Love, Gastonia, NC

  • D Company:
    • LCpl Glenn H. Dusbabek, Waco, TX

  • H&S Company:
    • Cpl Robert A. McLoughlin, Knoxville, TN
    • LCpl James C. Heard, Philadelphia, PA
    • Pfc Basilio Gomez, San Antonio, TX

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a friend,
Richard L. Williams, MGySgt USMC

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Memorial first published on 7 May 2005
Last updated 07/02/2006