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Corp Edward Joseph Downs

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Corp Edward Joseph Downs

  • Birth 22 Oct 1948 Washington, District of Columbia, District Of Columbia, USA
  • Death 28 Jul 1968 Tam Kỳ, Quang Nam, Vietnam
  • Burial Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA
  • Plot Sec: 52, Site: 1423
  • Memorial ID 49175066

Edward the son of Irving and Alice V. Downs of Washington DC, enlisted in the US Marine Corps on July 5, 1967 In Baltimore MD. He arrived in Vietnam on December 15 and was assigned to Company K, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st MARDIV (Rein) FMF.

On the morning of 28 July the Company moved out of Da Hoa An eastward, the third platoon receiving some small arms harassing fire which ceased, shortly thereafter the Marines heard an eruption of gunfire from the direction of the second platoon which had run into an ambush. The NVA were in fortified positions concealed in a tree line under cover and had been waiting for the approaching Marines who were strung out in a column in the open. At the appropriate time, the enemy which was later estimated to have been a Company sized force opened up with all available fire power it had cutting down many of the men by the quantity of fire directed at them. The third platoon quickly moved up but was also immediately pinned down by machine gun and automatic weapons fire which raked the men.

A large number of casualties were being taken by the Marines who found themselves with little cover in open rice paddies, and reaction forces from Company L and M were dispatched to assist the beleaguered Marines who were unable to move. Men assaulted the enemy bunkers to enable others help in attempting to retrieve their fallen comrades, Artillery and fixed wing missions were called in on the enemy positions which helped to relieve some of the pressure on the men under fire. by late afternoon Company K was able to link up with Company L and a platoon from Company M and moved with their casualties to a secured LZ to evacuate the dead and the wounded. Cpl Downs was one of the casualties, he was killed in action as a result of hostile rifle fire.

The day proved to be a costly one for the Marines, Company K lost sixteen men who were killed in action, one USN Corpsman was killed and there were wounded and evacuated. Company M had one Marine killed and five wounded.

* Cpl Downs was presented with the Silver Star Medal posthumously "For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action ....on 28 July 1968...."

Casualties: H&S Company

Wayne Maurice Caron MEDAL OF HONOR

Casualties: Company K

David Leroy Brooks
Edward Joseph Downs
Philip Lyn Gosselin
George Stephen Johnson
Douglas Milton Kelly
John Manning Lancaster
Robert Charles Lee
Daniel Edward Lloyd
James Calvin Markel Jr.
Carl Robert Miller
Anthony Carlos Pino
Raphael Johnny Rendon
John Edward Rice
John Reyito Serrano
William Stanley Smoyer
John Jeremiah Till

Casualties: Company M
Jorge Martinez
Silver Star Citation

Silver Star, Awarded posthumously, for actions, during the Vietnam War: The President of the United States of America takes pride, in presenting the Silver Star, (Posthumously) to Corporal, Edward Joseph Downs, (MCSN: 2350684) United States, Marine Corps, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity, in action, while serving, as a Squad Leader, with Company K, Third, Battalion, Seventh, Marines, FIRST, Marine Division, (Rein.) FMF., in connection with combat operations, against the enemy, in the Republic, of Vietnam. Early on, the afternoon, of 28, July 1968, Company K, was conducting, a search and destroy operation, in Quang Nam, Province, when the Marines came under, a heavy volume, of small, arms fire, from a large enemy force, occupying, a fortified position well-concealed, in a tree line. Alertly pinpointing the hostile positions, Corporal, Downs unhesitatingly moved, from his position and fearlessly assaulted, the enemy emplacements. Ignoring, the hostile rounds, impacting near him, he was boldly advancing through, the tree line, delivering accurate fire, upon the enemy, when Corporal, Downs was, mortally wounded. His daring initiative and heroic efforts inspired all, who observed him and effectively suppressed, the hostile fire, enabling the Marines to evacuate, their casualties. By his courage, aggressive, fighting spirit and steadfast devotion, to duty, Corporal, Downs contributed significantly, to the accomplishment, of his unit's, mission and upheld the highest traditions, of the Marine Corps and of the United States, Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life, for his country. Action Date: 28-Jul-68, Service: Marine Corps, Rank: Corporal, Company: Company K, Battalion: 3d, Battalion, Regiment: 7th, Marines, Division: 1st, Marine Division, (Rein.) FMF..=

Bio by: Victor Vilionis

Gravesite Details CPL USMC





  • Created by: John C. Anderson
  • Added: 5 Mar 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 49175066
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Corp Edward Joseph Downs (22 Oct 1948–28 Jul 1968), Find A Grave Memorial no. 49175066, citing Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Arlington County, Virginia, USA ; Maintained by John C. Anderson (contributor 47208015) .