Saturday, May 23, 2015

In Memoriam: Bob Donovan, Mike Cunnion, Jack Martin

Remembering my three classmates at Holy Cross College who died in Vietnam. - gwc

Mike Cunnion  came to Holy Cross from Mt. St. Michael in Mt. Vernon where I had seen him as starting quarterback playing against my school, Brooklyn Prep.  Mike had a great arm - better than Jack Lentz, our classmate who after being QB at the Cross went on to play cornerback for the Buffalo Bills.
Mike was a great guy but didn't hit the books.  And Holy Cross cut you no slack for being a scholarship athlete.  He flunked out and joined the Marines.  On July 15, 1966 he and fourteen other men went down in flames in the helicopter pictured above.

Bob Donovan was a fine runner.  In 1963 he came to Holy Cross from Syracuse on a track scholarship.  But he neglected his studies, and flunked out. He was drafted, and as a PFC went to Vietnam on September 22, 1966.  The facts on the virtual wall are spare:
  Incident Date: 11/09/1966 
Casualty Date: 11/09/1966
Age at Loss: 19
Location: Phu Yen Province, South Vietnam
Remains: Body recovered
Casualty Type: Hostile, died outright
Casualty Reason: Ground casualty
Casualty Detail: Gun or small arms fire
John B Martin
John B. Martin, II

Jack Bernard Martin, II, Holy Cross '67  was in Navy ROTC - which paid his tuition.  I had passed the test for Navy ROTC but failed the physical.  I needed eyeglasses.  But I don't want to be a pilot, I protested.  Nevermind =we've got guys who can take your place.  Jack was one of them. The details on the Vietnam Memorial "virtual wall" are:
Location:Offshore, North Vietnam
  Remains:Body not recovered
  Casualty Type:Non-hostile, died of other causes
  Casualty Reason:Fixed Wing - Pilot
  Casualty Detail:Air loss or crash at sea

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