PDA

View Full Version : Taps: SGM Kenneth Hanna (5th & 1st SFGA)


Trip_Wire (RIP)
01-13-2005, 11:55
A funeral service is scheduled for SGM Kenneth Hanna formerly of Co C 5th SFGA and 1st SFGA. He was kill during the attack on Lang Vei February 7, 1968. His body was recently recovered.
The Funeral Service will be held on 15 Jan 05 (Saturday) at 1100. The funeral will take place at First Baptist Church, 302 Moore Street, Fayetteville North Carolina. Graveside Service also on 15 Jan 05 immediately following the funeral at Sandhills State Veterans Cemetery, 310 Murchison Road, Spring Lake, North Carolina.

His wife has requested a strong SF presence and SF Honorary Pallbearers. They have request that we arrive at 1030 hr. at the church.

(Welcome home and RIP SGM Hanna.)

CPTAUSRET
01-13-2005, 11:58
Blue skies:

Rest In Peace, SGM:

12B4S
01-13-2005, 22:38
God Bless, welcome Home.
Rest in Peace Sergeant Major

12B4S
01-13-2005, 22:54
Perhaps this isn't the thread to post this. I think is. SGM Hanna and the rest of those men deserve EVERYONE to know about thier skill and Heroism. Many out here know about Lang Vei. I first started reading about it before I went in. Anyway in respect to those Soldiers.

http://www.gruntonline.com/TheWar/lang_vei.htm

504PIR
01-13-2005, 23:28
Wow, finally coming home. RIP SGM

Dan
01-14-2005, 10:49
Here's a good write-up from the Fayetteville Observer today:

Finding Sgt. Hanna's remains touches his survivors
By Justin Willett
Staff writer

The Army casualty officer knocked on Mary Hanna's door in February 1968.

He told her that Sgt. 1st Class Kenneth Hanna had been missing since Feb. 7, 1968, when he was last seen giving first aid to a fellow Green Beret while their Special Forces camp in Vietnam's Quan Tri province was being overrun by North Vietnamese tanks.

Mary Hanna's husband of 13 years was missing in action.

"For months all I did was cry," she said Tuesday during an interview at her daughter's home near Fort Bragg.

For the next decade, Mary Hanna lived with uncertainty. In 1978, Kenneth Hanna was declared killed in action, and members of Fort Bragg's Special Forces held a memorial service.

"I figured then that he was dead," Mary Hanna said. "I came to live with that. I got by day to day."

Her grief resurfaced in November when Mary Hanna's daughter, Kenetha Garcia, received a call from a man informing her that her father's remains had been found in Vietnam in 2003 and positively identified Sept. 8. The man wanted to come to Fayetteville to talk to her and Mary Hanna.

"It was like I heard him, and I really didn't," Garcia said. "My father had laid in that bunker for 35 years. It was buried for a very, very long time."

Mary Hanna didn't want to upset the delicate emotional balance she had established over the past three decades.

"I really didn't want to talk to him, but I did," she said.

Battle of Lang Vei

Kenneth and Mary Hanna married in 1955. They moved to Fort Bragg in 1964 after 3 years in Germany.

Mary Hanna said her husband liked the Fayetteville area. He was originally from Scranton, S.C., and she was from Lake City, S.C.

"He said, 'If anything happens to me, stay here,'" Mary Hanna remembered.

In February 1968 Kenneth Hanna was weapons sergeant for Charlie Company, Detachment A-101 of the 5th Special Forces Group, based at the Lang Vei Special Forces camp near the Laos border.

According to an Army history of the battle, the Lang Vei Special Forces Camp was completed in September 1967, less than four months after a previous camp - 1,000 meters to the east - had been infiltrated by North Vietnamese soldiers.

The new camp housed about 500 Vietnamese and Laotian fighters and two dozen Americans, mostly Special Forces.

On Feb. 6, 1968, signs of an impending battle were everywhere. Mortars and artillery fire slammed into the camp throughout the day. As dusk approached, soldiers at the camp's defensive positions reported strange noises - including idling engines - and trip-flare booby traps going off on the perimeter.

Shortly after midnight, five Soviet-made PT-76 medium tanks rumbled toward the camp from the south, accompanied by two platoons of North Vietnamese infantrymen.

The fight was on.

As tanks breached the camp's eastern end, Sgts. 1st Class Kenneth Hanna and Charles W. Lindewald were in an observation post 800 meters west of the camp.

Lindewald called for artillery fire and moments later was hit in the stomach by a machine-gun bullet. Hanna began performing first aid as the enemy encircled their position.

It is unclear what happened next, but Lindewald and Hanna died together in that bunker.

By 5:30 p.m. on Feb. 7, all known survivors from the camp had been evacuated to Khe Sanh. Nearly half of the camp's Vietnamese and Laotian fighters were killed. Ten of the 24 Americans were killed or missing and 11 wounded.

Years later, a few of the soldiers who had been held as captives were released. Hanna, Lindewald and three other American soldiers were never found.

Kenneth Hanna was awarded a Silver Star and a Purple Heart and promoted twice, first to master sergeant and then to sergeant major.

Search and rescue

A military search-and-rescue task force traveled to the area in 1993 to interview residents and try to find the remains of the five missing Green Berets.

Robert Mann was part of that initial search. He is now the deputy scientific director for the Central Identification Laboratory at the Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command, or JPAC, at Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii.

Mann said those early searches were hampered by development in the area. Much of the landscape around the former Lang Vei camp had been altered by highway projects.

The team stepped up its efforts in 1995. Searchers enlisted the help of Frank C. Willoughby, the retired commander of Charlie Company, Detachment A-101.

Willoughby had designed and overseen the building of the Lang Vei Special Forces camp, and searchers hoped he would succeed where they had failed.

But Willoughby was also stumped by the changed landscape. The team eventually found the camp's tactical operations center but no remains.

Mann said searches often start and stop as leads appear and then go cold.

In September 2003 officials got the break they were looking for when they learned that a couple of Vietnamese had found dog tags and other items in a village near the site of the Lang Vei camp.

While scrounging for scrap metal, the Vietnamese had stumbled upon boots, identification cards, poncho liners, dog tags and what later proved to be the remains of Hanna and Lindewald.

A recovery team searched the area in November 2003 and recovered the remains and artifacts. They were flown to JPAC's lab in Hawaii.

"Finding these guys was really a matter of blood, sweat and tears," Mann said.

Positive identification of Hanna's remains was made on Sept. 8 through dental records.

Searchers also recovered his identification card, dog tag and pocketknife among other items.

Officials provided the family with a thick book that includes pictures of all the remains and artifacts and an explanation of the recovery.

Mann holds out hope that the remaining three missing Green Berets will be found.

"Nobody here is giving up hope," he said. "Every case is a story."

Notification

About a month after the remains were positively identified, Kenetha Garcia received the call.

"I just thought they were going to deliver the dog tag," Garcia said. "It just didn't sink in until they came to the house and asked to sit at the table."

Rafael Garcia, Kenetha's husband, said he was excited at the news. "I always sensed that there was something missing," he said. "My wife wouldn't talk about her father, and Mary Hanna wouldn't tell me anything."

Garcia said that during holidays the family would pause awkwardly when it was time to say the blessing before dinner.

"It was something that was reserved for the head of the household, which was Kenneth," he said.

Garcia took it upon himself to research information about his father-in-law. He bought books about the battle of Lang Vei and memorized the story.

Garcia said family members were hurt that they never knew why Hanna was left behind. Accounts of the battle say that the Marine leaders at nearby Khe Sanh sent air support but refused to send infantrymen.

"I think that when they received the full story they were hurt by it," he said.

"They tuned themselves out of it. They wanted to live with the memories they had."

Mary Hanna said she won't look at her husband's remains. She has also so far avoided the book provided by JPAC. It all brings up too many memories.

"I might (read it) before I pass away myself," she said.

Kenetha said she has talked to Lindewald's sister. She said the sister is Lindewald's only living relative and was happy to hear that her brother had been found with Kenneth Hanna.

Mary Hanna said she feels the same way she has always felt - sad. The family will bury Kenneth Hanna on Saturday in Sandhills Veterans Cemetery. The funeral will be in the First Baptist Church on Moore Street.

The final step of the journey will be a ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery on Feb. 4.

"Maybe after that I'll feel some closure," Mary Hanna said.

Dan
01-14-2005, 10:49
Enhanced Fort Bragg unit photo from the mid-1960s

Sgt. 1st Class Kenneth Hanna, center, was listed as missing in action in 1968 in Lang Vei, Vietnam. His remains were found in 2003.

Dan
01-14-2005, 10:50
Kenetha Garcia, left, holds a picture of her father, Sgt. 1st Class Kenneth Hanna, with her mother Mary Hanna.

12B4S
01-15-2005, 02:03
Dan....... thanks for the details....... I was wondering how it came to be

12B4S
01-15-2005, 02:27
Want to add one more thing. As Hanna and Lindewald were both in that OP, died there and were discovered there in 2003.

RIP SFC Lindewald.........

drawbreaker
01-27-2005, 11:12
RIP and Welcome Home SGM Hanna and SFC Lindewald...Rest Easy

NousDefionsDoc
01-27-2005, 20:58
En paz descansen

QRQ 30
02-03-2005, 12:25
Subject : SGM Kenneth Hanna



A funeral service is scheduled for SGM Kenneth Hanna formerly of CoC/5th SFGA and 1st SFGA. He was killed during the attack on Lang Vei February 7, 1968. His body was recently recovered.
The Funeral Service will be held on 15 Jan 05 (Saturday) at 1100. The funeral will take place at First Baptist Church, 302 Moore Street, Fayetteville North Carolina. Graveside Service also on 15 Jan 05 immediately following the funeral at Sandhills State Veterans Cemetery, 310 Murchison Road, Spring Lake, North Carolina.

I apologize for not posting this sooner. As you can see we are still working on resolving the MIA issue. There is a QP here, CRS name, who is active in JCRC or whatever the present day designation is.

SP5IC
02-03-2005, 19:38
I wonder if my buddy Frankie Dooms was there? He was a SP4 in the TOC when it went down. Ended up as an E-9, super soldier.

Mac
02-03-2005, 20:56
Rest in Peace, SGM Hanna and SFC Lindewald....welcome home.

QRQ 30
02-03-2005, 21:10
I wonder if my buddy Frankie Dooms was there? He was a SP4 in the TOC when it went down. Ended up as an E-9, super soldier.

I recognize that name. Is it possible that he was in C&C or later ended up there at Khe Sahn or Kontum? Was he an 05B? Of course there are lots of places we could have met -- Bragg, Panama or Thailand.

12B4S
02-03-2005, 22:20
[QUOTE=QRQ 30]I apologize for not posting this sooner. As you can see we are still working on resolving the MIA issue. There is a QP here, CRS name, who is active in JCRC or whatever the present day designation is.[/QUOTE


Terry, would that be Eagle5US? I'm not sure.

Team Sergeant
02-24-2005, 23:03
I apologize for not posting this sooner. As you can see we are still working on resolving the MIA issue. There is a QP here, CRS name, who is active in JCRC or whatever the present day designation is.

I didn't see this until today.

Terry yes and his screen name is Eagle5US.

TS

12B4S
05-11-2005, 02:49
I wonder if my buddy Frankie Dooms was there? He was a SP4 in the TOC when it went down. Ended up as an E-9, super soldier.

I revisited this thread to copy to the current thread on the board. Since this thread, I had picked up a book a couple months ago "Night of the Silver Stars" The battle for Lang Vei, by William R Phillips. Did a quick search, didn't see where it has been mentioned.

Anyway, Sp4c O5B Dooms is mentioned several times in the book.