David L Tiffany

Specialist Five
Army of the United States
24 July 1949 - 28 May 1969
Riverside, California
Panel 23W Line 012

Distinguished Service Cross Silver Star

Combat Medic

Purple Heart, National Defense, Vietnam Service, Vietnam Campaign
David L Tiffany

The database page for David L Tiffany

05 Jun 2003

A Co, 5th Bn, 60th Inf

I was the commander of Company A, 5th Bn., 60th Infantry, 9th Inf Div from Oct 68 to May 69. Doc Tiffany was one of four medics in the company, and he was my favorite. He was always upbeat, and had a smile for everyone. I can't tell you the number of times I chewed him out for taking too many chances. But, knowing he was taking those chances for the wounded, I could never chew him out without giving him a pat on the back as well. If you were wounded he was the medic you hoped was nearest you. He was without doubt the most selfless, courageous soldier I've ever known. When he transferred to the Battalion's Recon Platoon in April 69 I had a feeling of foreboding. When he died in late May 69 it was in an attempt to save the lives of his fellow soldiers. I still cry when I think of his loss.

You may have been assigned to Headquarters Company, but you'll remain with us as an Alpha Company "Go Devil" forever. God bless you, Doc.

From his Company Commander,
Alan G. Anderson

David with a friend and Vietnamese children

15 Nov 2003

After a hand shake and a smile that was my introduction to you and Recon I followed you into combat. There was that danger about you that made me feel safe just knowing you were on point.

To this day, buddy, there is this danger about me.
I watched you move flawlessly through the chaos
that is combat.
You never missed a beat.

I watched.
I learned. You died putting up a fight.
The bullet that hit your spare ammo
is the only reason you're not here now.

But if you're listening I got good news!
I found our orders that attached us
and made us a part of
Co E, 75th Infantry (Airborne Rangers).
We hit the big time, bro! we did it! all of us!
So ... this is Ranger One out ... do you roger that!

From a comrade in arms,
Pvt. Prince K. Wills

16 Nov 2003

Dave replaced me in the platoon.
I knew him briefly. He was a great guy.

Mac MacKechnie

19 Nov 2003


I had the honor of serving with Doc Tiffany in Alpha Company, 5th Bn, 60th Infantry, at Rach Kien, Vietnam during 1968-69. Doc was a part of our Captain Alan Anderson's command group. Our Alpha Company was more like a BAND OF BROTHERS than just a group of soldiers. Under Capt. Anderson's leadership and with highly motivated "go to" support leaders like Doc Tiffany, our company was among the most effective fighting units in Vietnam. My job as a Platoon Sergeant was made more manageable with special people like David always there boosting the morale of the men. He challenged them to do their very best and he set the example of how this was to be achieved. Doc joined a newly formed Recon Platoon in Echo Company along with several other brave men from around the Battalion. We missed having Doc Tiffany in Alpha Co., but we knew he was pursuing his dream of being part of "the Best of the Best". On that tragic 28 May 69 day when Recon lost its command group to enemy fire, the entire Battalion was in tears. Doc Tiffany perished attempting to save his fellow Nam Brothers' lives. I still get emotional thinking about how lucky I was to have known Doc and to have shared part of our lives together. He is, without a doubt, an American HERO.

We love you Doc. We will remain "NAM BROTHERS FOREVER".

Barney Tharp
3240 Sam Browning Rd, Lebanon, Kentucky

05 Dec 2003

David's mother proudly holding a picture of him.

To David, My Son
- June 6, 1969 -

David L Tiffany

He sent us a picture from Vietnam,
General William R. Kraft was shaking his hand.
This gallant young medic, whom so many admire,
Had rescued the wounded, under enemy fire.
Not of his safety was his thought,
His wounded men out must be brought.
He stood tall and lean in battle dress,
The Silver Star emblazoned his chest.

In April he went on his "R&R",
He called from Japan - it seemed so far.
How good it was to hear his voice!
I'd have had him home, had it been my choice.
But no, his great ambition lay
To fight for his Country, far, far away.
This handsome young lad was only nineteen,
He certainly had a patriot's dream.

Then just last Saturday, at One,
We learned that David's work was done.
'Twas in our living room we met
An Army Sergeant, who said with regret,
"It's my sad duty to declare,
Your son has given his life over there."
Oh, David we'll miss you in this vale of tears,
But you will be ours for eternal years.

Written for David's Memorial Service
by his father,
Laurence L. Tiffany (1917-1995)
Master Sergeant, U. S. Air Force (Ret)
World War II, Korean Conflict

David was the fourth of five children. Our next-door neighbors, the Hudsons, had six children; their fifth was named Dennis and he and David were buddies. Both enlisted in the Army and trained as medics. David went to Vietnam and Dennis followed shortly thereafter. David was killed on May 28th, 1969 and Dennis was died five months later on October 23, 1969. They are neighbors still today, with their final resting places a few feet apart in Riverside's Crestlawn Memorial Cemetery in the Military section.

We love both David and Dennis Hudson and will never forget them or their brave determination to serve their fellow soldiers. You each gave your life for freedom, and you each are remembered!

Placed by David's sister,
Linda M Tiffany

15 Dec 2003

California Viet Nam Veteran's Memorial

David's name is inscribed on the California Viet Nam Veteran's Memorial at the state capitol in Sacramento.

Brian Balkcom
Viet Nam Veteran 1972

06 Apr 2006

I was lucky and blessed to have served with one of the bravest men I have ever known. You will always be in my thoughts and dreams and most importantly prayers. I love you, Doc, and we will be brothers forever. I can say a lot more but you would not want it that way. Always thinking of us, never yourself. Remember, Doc, {only the good die young}.

From a combat friend,
Stephen J. Inguanta
SP4, A Co, 5th Bn, 60th Inf, 9th Inf Div
24 Kastal Drive, Ridge, New York 11961

Notes from The Virtual Wall

The photograph at the top of the poem "To David, My Son" comes from "Vietnam: One Week's Dead", LIFE Magazine, Vol. 66, No. 25, June 27, 1969, and shows SP5 Tiffany wearing the Silver Star ... presumably the photo was taken at the awards ceremony. His Distinguished Service Cross was awarded for his actions during the fight in which he died.

As noted above, SP5 Tiffany was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 5th Battalion, 60th Infantry, but he was in the field with E Company, 5/60th Inf, at the time of his death. Five men died in the engagement:

  • 1LT Patrick M. Dixon, Dixon, IL (Dist Svc Cross)
  • SGT Earl A. Godman, Baltimore, MD
  • SP5 David L. Tiffany, Riverside, CA (Dist Svc Cross, Silver Star)
  • SP4 Marvin C. Briss, Binford, ND
  • SP4 Dick E. Whitney, Newberg, OR

Visit John Dennison's
Medics on the Wall
memorial which honors the
Army Medics and Navy Corpsmen who died in Vietnam.

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With all respect
Jim Schueckler, former CW2, US Army
Ken Davis, Commander, United States Navy (Ret)
Last updated 08/10/2009