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Richard Laverne Wissler, Jr

Willow Street Sailor Slain on River Patrol
Lancaster (PA) New Era - October 4, 1969

A U.S. Navy quartermaster from Willow Street who re-enlisted to command a river patrol boat in Vietnam was killed while on river patrol duty last Wednesday.
P.O.2c Richard Lavern Wissler, 23, son of Mrs. Janeth Wissler of 1 Barbara Ave., Willow Street, lost his life while commanding a river patrol boat on the Ong Dinh River in South Vietnam.
Mrs. Wissler said Friday a telegram from the U.S. Department of Defense attributed her son's death to shrapnel wounds from explosion of a mine in the river.
"That's all he wanted to do, be in charge of one of those river boats," said Mrs. Wissler.
She said he would have been discharged this year as a Navy Quartermaster Second Class after serving about six months in Vietnam aboard the destroyer USS Hawood.
Her son decided he wanted to command a river patrol boat, so, she said, he re-enlisted for four months, completed a special survival school in California recently and returned to Vietnam duty as a river boat commander.
The deceased graduated from Lampeter-Strasburg High School in 1964, where he played soccer and baseball. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1965.
Before entering the service, he worked for the Donnelley Printing Co., 391 Steelway.
Surviving besides his mother, are his father, Richard L. Wissler, Lancaster; a brother, Sgt. Vernon Wissler, serving with the U.S. Air Force in Texas; a sister, Eva, wife of Richard Hershock, Willow Street; brother and sisters: Karen, Denise, Darwin and Marie, all at home; paternal grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Earl Wissler, Lancaster; and maternal grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Aldus L. Kreider, Willow Street Pike

QM2 - E5 - Navy - Regular

Length of service 4 years
His tour began on Jun 12, 1969
Casualty was on Oct 2, 1969
Body was recovered

Panel 17W - Line 32

** information courtesy of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Family Members





  • Created by: Carolyn Y Lowe Shifflett
  • Added: 10 Mar 2009
  • Find A Grave Memorial 34651166
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Richard Laverne Wissler, Jr (6 Sep 1946–2 Oct 1969), Find A Grave Memorial no. 34651166, citing Willow Street United Church of Christ Cemetery, Willow Street, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, USA ; Maintained by Carolyn Y Lowe Shifflett (contributor 46796232) .