The 35th Infantry Regiment Association salutes our fallen brother, SP4 David Edward Fitzgerald, who died in the service of his country on August 2nd, 1969 in Pleiku Province, Vietnam. The cause of death was listed as Mine, In Convoy to Ban Me Thout. At the time of his death David was 24 years of age. He was from Oak Lawn, Illinois. David is honored on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial at Panel 20W, Line 86.
The decorations earned by SP4 David Edward Fitzgerald include: the Silver Star, the Purple Heart, the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, the Vietnam Campaign Medal and the Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm Unit Citation.
David was attached to B, 2/35th from his parent unit, Battery B, 2/9th Artillery
(The following information supplied by David's mother)
"David graduated from Leo High School, Chicago, Illinois, in 1963. In the fall of 1963 he enrolled at Notre Dame University, graduating in 1967 with a BBA degree. David loved sports, especially football. He injured his right elbow in his senior year but never complained. When his number came up in the draft, he was rejected---"You couldn't salute to surrender." After many attempts, he finally was accepted.David's Dad died the following year. He was a dear, loving son and sorely missed by all."
(The following is a letter written to President Nixon by the Fitzgerald family in response to his Presidential Letter of Condolence)
Dear President Nixon, September 4, 1969
Thank you so much for your kind note of sympathy concerning the death of our beloved son, David, in Viet Nam on August 2. It meant a lot to us to know that you really do care that our sons are dying in Viet Nam. I hope and pray there will be a way to end this war so no more families will have to undergo the agony and despair we are experiencing.
We were so proud of our son. His Irish father was so happy he was accepted and graduated from Notre Dame! He had so much to give to this country! Seems like the nice, educated boys are dying in Viet Nam and the rabble-rousers in the colleges now are exempt and, heaven help us, will run our country in the near future.
The Army has been most sympathetic to us. Sgt. Klaus D. Meissner, who escorted David's body from Oakland, California, was most kind, gentle, and considerate. It was such an honor to have a soldier like Sgt. Meissner accompany David home. The firing squad was excellent; they were from Fort Sheridan. Warrant Officer Blummer from Orland Park was, and still is, very kind and considerate of our needs. He calls repeatedly asking if we need his assistance.
Thank you Mr. President again for everything and I hope and pray there will be a solution to this Viet Nam war. Our prayers are with you and your lovely family.
Yours very truly,
Mrs. Edward E Fitzgerald
David is buried in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, 6001 West 111 th Street,
Worth, Illinois, Lot 36, Block 16, Section 28.