VIETNAM - WADDELL, JAMES DARRELL

Waddell, James Darrell

VIETNAM - WADDELL, JAMES DARRELL
WADDELL, JAMES DARRELL

Rank: Sergeant

Unit: E Troop, 2nd Squadron, 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment

MOS: 11E – Armor Crewman

Awards: Bronze Star Medal with Valor Device and Oak Leaf Cluster, Purple Heart Medal, Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal

Badges: Combat Infantryman Badge

Unit awards: Vietnamese Gallantry Cross with Palm device

Enlisted by: Regular

Date of birth: 11-Jul-1949

Hometown: Lamesa, Texas

Marital status: Married to Brenda M. Waddell

Campaign: Vietnam Conflict

Entered service: 26-Jul-1967

Start of tour: 3-Nov-1970

Incident date: 14-Apr-1971

Date of casualty: 14-Apr-1971

Age at death: 21

Cause of death: Non-hostile, died of other causes. Vehicle Crash (MC). Vehicle loss or crash.
James Darrell Waddell was killed while he was instructing a student driver on a military vehicle when he fell from the vehicle and it ran over him. / Driver Sheridan tank (M-551) sitting on the front slope instructing another individual.  Student down shifted suddenly.  Em fell from vehicle and was crushed.

Location of fatality: Binh Thuy, South Vietnam, ZT 020 032

Place of interment: Coleman City Cemetery, Coleman, Texas, USA

View this soldier‘s Find a Grave page (opens in a new window)

Vietnam Veterans Memorial panel and row: 04W 125 (view Vietnam Veterans Memorial link in a new window)

 

BRONZE STAR MEDAL

BRONZE STAR MEDAL
WITH VALOR DEVICE

SPECIALIST FOUR JAMES DARRELL WADDELL
16 APRIL 1969
H COMPANY, 2nd SQUADRON

11TH ARMORED CAVALRY REGIMENT

Specialist Four Waddell distinguished himself by heroism in connection with military operations against a hostile force on 16 April 1969 while serving as a tank driver with Company H, 2d Squadron, 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment, in the Republic of Vietnam. On this date while elements of Company H and Troop E were conducting a reconnaissance-in-force mission, they suddenly came under intense small arms, automatic weapons, and rocket-propelled grenade fire from a large well-concealed enemy force. After the initial contact the friendly elements withdrew in order to regroup and were forced to leave a damaged tank very close to the hostile positions. As the friendly vehicles began an assault on the enemy fortifications, Specialist Waddell’s tank was hit by an antitank rocket, wounding the tank commander and the loader. Reacting instantly, Specialist Waddell maneuvered his tank to the medical vehicle and assisted in evacuating the wounded crew. After his tank was re-manned, he drove it back into the contact area. When the order was given to withdraw because of the intensity of the hostile fire, Specialist Waddell noticed that the damaged tank still remained exposed to the enemy fusillade. Realizing the importance of removing the tank before it fell into enemy hands, he quickly maneuvered his tank to a position beside the damaged one. Handing the controls over to his loader, Specialist Waddell, disregarding his own safety, mounted the damaged tank and successfully drove it from the contact area. Specialist Four Waddell’s courage and devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit and the United States Army.
Headquarters, II Field Force Vietnam General Orders No. 1675 (7 July 1969)

The owner of this website has made a commitment to accessibility and inclusion, please report any problems that you encounter using the contact form on this website. This site uses the WP ADA Compliance Check plugin to enhance accessibility.