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SP4 Donald Evans at Dau Tieng

Letter Home From Vietnam

SP/4 Donald Evans
A Co.  2nd Bn  12th INF
APO 96268, San Francisco

Mr. and Mrs. Donald Evans
836 N Elspeth Way
Covina, CALIF

28 OCT, 66

Hello Mom + Dad

How are the broken arms and colds coming along?

Things are still the same here. It rains at least once a day and is hot with lots of humidity. I'm in good shape. No alments or bullet holes. We are still treated about the same as when we in the states, just not to the same degree.

Being in shape can't be helped. I get in more patrol time than anyone else in the platoon. Along with that we've been putting in lots of other work like staking sand bags around our tents (9 high), filling in ditches the other outfit dug, and other types of maintenant. No rest for Johnson's under paid killers.

Contact with Charlie has only happened twice. A night ambush patrol from 2nd platoon got hit. There was suspose to have been lots of lead flying but no blood was found nor any bodies. Charlie doesn't leave bodies behind so its hard to say if any were hit. That same night Charlie Cong hit the berm. Again nothing cam of it.

Watch the T.V. for a parade in Saigon. Tell Bonnie also. "A" Company is going to be in it. The rest of the Battalion is going on a 3 day search and clear mission, but we get out of that. Its to bad Ha! The parade is Sunday or Monday. Should be in the paper or some news media.

Papy, haven't found any rock worth picking up, but when I do I'll send them to you.

So much for now.
Love  Donnie

This letter is on display along with a portrait of SP4 Donald Ward Evans Jr at Evans U.S. Army Hospital, Fort Carson, Colorado. It is reproduced here as written.

SP4 Donald Evans was a member of Alpha Company, 2d Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment (A/2/12), which was part of the 3d Brigade of the 4th Infantry Division. 3d BDE/4th ID embarked on the troop ship General Nelson M. Walker at Seattle, Washington in September 1966. After a stop in Okinawa, the ship arrived at Vung Tau, South Vietnam on 8 October 1966. The troops went ashore in landing craft. The brigade was assigned to III Corps Region in the 25th ID Area of Operations, just north of Saigon. The rest of 4th ID was at Pleiku in the Central Highlands.

On Tuesday, 1 November 1966, A/2/12 was in Saigon and marched in the National Day Parade, the commemoration of the establishment of the Republic of South Vietnam. Here is a picture of Alpha Company after the parade, which shows LT Allyn Palmer and guidon bearer PFC Larry Savage leading the company back to the assembly area.

In January 1967, 3d Brigade/4th ID was involved in Operation Cedar Falls. It served as a support and diversionary force working out of Dau Tieng, while the 1st and 25th Infantry Divisions performed a Search and Destroy Mission in the Iron Triangle to the south.  Operation Cedar Falls officially ended on 26 January 1967, but A/2/12 encountered a Viet Cong strong point north of Dau Tieng the next day.

On Friday, 27 January 1967, SP4 Donald Ward Evans Jr, MOS 91B20, was killed in action while giving aid to wounded soldiers under fire. This occurred north of the Michelin rubber plantation at Dau Tieng, in the Tri Tam District of Binh Duong Province, South Vietnam. Specialist Evans was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. Here is a portion of his Medal of Honor Citation:

Congressional Medal of Honor "Disregarding his painful wounds and seriously weakened from profuse bleeding, he continued his lifesaving medical aid and was killed while treating another wounded comrade. Specialist Evans' extraordinary valor, dedication and indomitable spirit saved the lives of several of his fellow soldiers, served as an inspiration to the men of his company, were instrumental in the success of their mission, and reflect great credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of his country."
Secretary of the Army Stanley R. Resor presented the Congressional Medal of Honor to Donald's wife and parents at a special ceremony at the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., on 4 June 1968. The Republic of South Vietnam also awarded him the Military Merit Medal and the Gallantry Cross with Palm.

Donald was survived by his wife, Bonnie Jean Evans, his parents, Donald and Elsie Evans, and his brothers Richard and Harvey. His father died in 1974. His mother died on Thursday, 28 June 2001, at the age of 88. Donald is buried next to his father in Oakdale Memorial Park, Glendora, California.

On Thursday, 5 June 1986, Evans U.S. Army Hospital was dedicated to the memory of Specialist Fourth Class Donald Ward Evans Jr, Soldier-Medic. Like all medics, he was known as Doc to his friends. His name is inscribed on Panel 14E, Line 85, of the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C.

Vietnam Memorial on Sunday,
24 Oct 2004; Photo by Paul Webber

Paul M. Webber, M.D.
August 2001


Special thanks to Bill Comeau, one of Donald Evans' friends in Alpha Company, who provided most of the background information for this page. He sent these photos of Donald Evans that were taken at Dau Tieng, Vietnam:

Evans 1 | Evans 2 | Evans 3 | Evans 4

Photos 1 - 3 are courtesy of Richard Evans and Bill Comeau. Photo 4 was taken by George Hanna, who was an NCO in the 3d Platoon of A/2/12. On 27 January 1967, George Hanna was wounded and pinned down by enemy fire north of the Michelin Plantation. Donald Evans went to his aid. Bill Comeau's History of 2/12 Infantry tells the story of that day. Bill has posted three other letters from Doc Evans:

25 Dec 1966 | 8 Jan 1967 | 25 Jan 1967

Bill Comeau sent this Map of Dau Tieng which shows the Alpha Company bivouac site in Dòn Dièn Michelin, the Michelin Rubber Plantation. There was an old French swimming pool at Dau Tieng, which was restored by 2/12 Infantry. Here is a picture of the swimming pool taken by Jim Olafson, the XO of Alpha Company. Notice the GI innovation of using a helicopter rotor wing for a diving board. Rumors that the pool was destroyed by Viet Cong sappers are wrong. Curtis Gilliland served with C/2/28 Infantry, 1st Division, at Lai Khe in 1968-1969. He reports that the pool was in use during his tour, and was renovated and still in use in 2003.

SP4 'Doc' Evans at Dau Tieng Combat Medic Memorial at the AMEDD Museum, Ft. Sam Houston, Texas

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Last edited on Tuesday, 25 September 2012
SP4 Evans Name on Vietnam Memorial

This Web site provides an introduction to the U.S. Army Medical Department's headquarters organizations, which are the Office of the Army Surgeon General and
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Last Modified 25 September, 2012