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SPC Larrie Jack “Larry” Gotcher

SPC Larrie Jack “Larry” Gotcher

Alameda County, California, USA
Death 22 Mar 1968 (aged 22)
Bien Hoa, Dong Nai, Vietnam
Burial Fair Oaks, Sacramento County, California, USA
Memorial ID 55048521 · View Source
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Sp4 Larry Gotcher 1945 - 1968

Larrie "Larry" Jack Gotcher, the only son of Robert H. Gotcher and Louise Schoolcraft, was born November 15, 1945 in Alameda County, California. Larrie's parents divorced when he was young, and he lived with his father.

Larrie attended elementary school in the cities of Lincoln and Roseville, Placer County. He attended Encina High School, Sacramento, his freshman year and was a 1963 graduate from Taft Union High School in Taft, CA. Larrie attended Taft Junior College in Kern County where he was voted most valuable player on the 1964 football team. He later attended Sacramento State College.

In 1967 he was drafted into the US Army and deployed to the Republic of Vietnam in November of that year. He was an Infantry Indirect Fire Crewman assigned with A Company, 4th Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 199th Light Infantry Brigade. On March 22, 1968 near the Dong Nai River in Bien Hoa Province, his platoon spent the day conducting a hard jungle sweep. Larrie was walking point squad as the Radio Telephone Operator when several Viet Cong were spotted near a VC base camp. The platoon searched for the enemy, with Larrie and two other soldiers from his squad taking the lead. There was a huge explosion, later determined to be a 50-pound land mine and a US artillery dud rigged in a tree. Sp4 Gotcher, age 22, died instantly. Two others in the platoon, SP4 Phillip J. Cayford of Brewer, Maine, and SP4 Brian S. Perlewitz of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, were also killed in action that day. Ironically, in Larrie's pocket was a letter he had been writing to his mother, part of which said not to worry; he was perfectly safe, desk-bound in a clerk job.

Burial with full military honors was at the Veterans Court of Honor, Mount Vernon Memorial Park, Fair Oaks.

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SP4 Larrie J. Gotcher is honored on Panel 45E Line 55 of the Vietnam War Memorial in Constitution Gardens, Washington, DC.

SP4 Larrie J. Gotcher's name was place by NASA on the STARDUST spacecraft, which visited Comet Wild 2 in 2004 -- as special tribute all names on the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, DC were included.

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When Larry Gotcher left Taft he left behind a wake of broken hearts. He was quite handsome and a very nice guy.

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Family Members

Gravesite Details Photos and information for Spec Larrie Jack Gotcher's memorial page are ©Zuzu*s Petals and cannot be used without permission. Please feel free to contact me.
  • Created by: Zuzu*s Petals
  • Added: 17 Jul 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 55048521
  • Zuzu*s Petals
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for SPC Larrie Jack “Larry” Gotcher (15 Nov 1945–22 Mar 1968), Find A Grave Memorial no. 55048521, citing Mount Vernon Memorial Park, Fair Oaks, Sacramento County, California, USA ; Maintained by Zuzu*s Petals (contributor 47134653) .