|Birth: ||Jan. 19, 1934|
New York, USA
|Death: ||Mar. 28, 1966|
Quang Ngai, Vietnam
John the son of Benny Banzevicius and Magdalena (deceased) of Amsterdam NY and husband of Barbara F. Bansavage of St Petersburg FL. SSgt Bansavage was assigned to Company C, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st MARDIV that landed in Chu Lai Vietnam on August 14, 1965 under the OPCON (operational control) of the 3d MARDIV (Rein) FMF.
By 1700H operation Indiana was underway, three Company's of the 1st Battalion,were heli-lifted from Chu Lai and landed in the designated Landing Zones without incident. Company C, one of the first on the ground moved out towards its designated blocking position.
Moving forward in the brush covered terrain the lead platoon made a navigational error, marching further north than their destination which lead them right into the middle of a VC encampment located in the village of Vinh Loc. No sooner had the men approached the edge of the village through an open rice paddy when the VC sprung their ambush and took the lead platoon under heavy machine-gun and automatic weapons fire from well concealed positions. The Marines were pinned down in the open and unable to advance forward. The first platoon moved to envelop the right flank and relieve the pressure on their fellow Marines who had sustained numerous casualties and were unable to extract themselves due to the heavy enemy fire and any advance stalled by the enemy.
The second platoon, held in reserve in the initial assualt was committed to the attack joining the third, again the attack was stalled due to heavy automatic weapons fire from a determined enemy force that would not yield any ground. Marines fought hand-to-hand, one Marine attacked a 12.7mm anti-aircraft machine gun bunker which had been cutting his friends down in the open. Artillery and air strikes struck the hamlet of Vinh Loc, but the enemy would not let up with its withering fire. With the onset of dusk the first platoon was ordered to withdraw, the VC made a concentrated effort to cover the Marine dead and wounded with intensive fire. The men managed to withdraw from the battlefield and set up a perimeter with all their wounded, although seven who had been killed in the action had to be left behind until daylight.
As was the case in most battles the VC withdrew their able bodied men, their wounded, and some of their dead during the night. At first light the Marines were ordered to enter the battlefield and recover their dead transporting them back to Chu Lai.
The battle had been costly for the men of Company C, over forty men were wounds and ten of their comrades were dead, among them SSgt Bansavage who had sustained an enemy gunshot wound.
Killed In Action:
John George Bansavage
Michael Ray Beck
Paul Elias Hassey
William Francis Joyce
Richard LeOtis Mayes
John Leigh McCarty
Pedro Bernal Padilla
Ricardo Colon Rodriguez
Leroy Eugene Simons
Banis Banzevicius (1895 - 1978)
Magdalena Motina Banzevicius (1900 - 1951)
Saint Casimir Cemetery
New York, USA
Plot: Section C, Row 1, Plot 15, Grave 3
GPS (lat/lon): 42.93158, -74.15442
Maintained by: Victor Vilionis
Originally Created by: Pennsylvania Lady
Record added: Oct 23, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 60516871