Conflict Period:
Vietnam War 1
Army 1
Captain 2
26 Jul 1940 2
19 Sep 1966 2

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Personal Details

Full Name:
John Milton Harrington 2
26 Jul 1940 2
Male 2
19 Sep 1966 2
Cause: Misadventure 2
Age at Death: 26 2
Body Recovered: Recovered 2
Casualty Date: 19 Sep 1966 2
Casualty Type: Hostile, Died 2
Hometown: Durham, NC 2
Marital Status: Married 2

Vietnam War 1

Army 1
Captain 2
4th Bn 2
Enlistment Type:
Regular 2
O3 2
Major Command:
196th LIB 2
31st Infantry 2
Army 2
Infantry Unit Commander (ARMY) 2
Tour Start Date:
06 Aug 1966 2
Years Served:
3 2
Methodist (also Evangelical United Brethren) 2
Race or Ethnicity:
Caucasian 2
Memorial Wall Location:
Line: 118 2
Panel: 10E 2

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It was once long ago, on a sunny day, that I visited my father's uncle, "Buddy" Harrington in Durham, N.C. As a young child, I can remember his home even to this day, running through the same halls that his own son, John Milton ran through. At the time though, I did not know John Milton. You see, John Milton died in service to his country 2 years before I was even born, but on that bright sunny day, I was told that he was as gregarious and energetic as I was at that age. It was at that time that I began to realize that I was kin to a hero. Throughout my life, I've visited the moving wall and seen his name, I've watched true story movies depicting the first battles of the Vietnam Conflict, and each time I do these things, I cry. Not for the loss... no.... I cry because his dedication, as well as the dedication of all the other soldiers of the United States military, protected what so many hold dear and so many more take for granted.... Freedom. I am proud to say that my cousin John Milton was a member of that group of people that did fight for what they believed in, giving us what no one should ever take for granted. Do I wish I got the chance to know him? Sure... Do I grieve because I didn't? What makes you think I don't? Because of John Milton I can say "I'm Proud to be an American, where at least I know I'm free... And I won't forget the men who died, to give that right to me...." (Lee Greenwood, "Proud to be an American") May your spirit carry on, John Milton, and I ask that you will watch over my son when he enters the Navy, guiding him in the strength and courage it takes to do what you did.... I love you From a cousin, Kris Harrington Sheeley

I first came to know John when he joined our unit in Ft Devens MA. The 4/31st Inf of the 196th Light Infantry Brigade. We went to Vietnam together and I was with him the night he lost his life. John was a wonderful person and a wonderful friend to me. I have really never gotton over his loss and stlill proudly remember him and our friendship. Sid Field (Then Lt in the 4/31st Tay Ningh Vietnam)

I was with your father's uncle John "Buddy" Harrington the night he was hit.I originally met him in Ft. Devens, MA and that was when he chose me to be his driver and radio operator. A better man I had never met. The one thing that always stuck in my mind was I always had to eat my rations with jelly because he insisted on everything having jelly on it. He was a big jelly fan and I guess it made things taste better, after all they weren't the best. Anyway, all kidding aside, I was with him and Col. Lynch when we were hit on a search and destroy mission, and my understanding is that 18 were wounded and 15 were killled. I did not know at the time that Capt. Harrington was wounded that bad and found that out later after my research on this website. It was more than 50 years ago and I still think about it. He was a good man. I have since contacted Col. Lynch and we have spoken over the phone and he is doing good at the age of 91. I am 74 now and it still weighs on my mind. Again, he was a fine man and I could have not served with a better soldier or individual, he is truly missed.

Sincerely and with dear regret,

Sp. 4 Barry W. Holmes

To: Sid Fields

i was with capt. harrington and col. lynch when we were hit. i don't remember lt. fields. where you with us when capt. harrington put a radio on my back and loaded me with ammo. where you the 2nd leutenant with us before we went out? i was the one with the bad back, sp4 holmes.

Respectfully, B Holmes

PS. Do you remember a Sgt. Tomey or Jenkins?

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