MARSHALL CO. — Seven Marshall County men died in the Vietnam War, and Greenfield resident David Hine wants to make sure they will not be forgotten.
Hine, who is retired from the Air Force, spends between 40 and 50 hours each week trying to locate photos of fallen Vietnam veterans from Indiana.
“This project was started in 2009 by the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund,” explained Hine, “In Indiana, there are still more than 800 men that don’t have photos.”
Once the photos are found, they are uploaded to the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial Fund website (www.vvmf.org ) and friends and relatives can leave their personal comments.
The former Marshall County residents that are lacking photos are: Terry Wayne Dickerhoff, Plymouth; Marvin Lee Dipert, Plymouth; Robert Warner Kurtz, Culver; Robert Lynne Long, Plymouth; Dale Allen Pennington, Culver; Richard Eugene Peters, Bourbon; and Glenn Airen Pranger, Plymouth.
Hine first became interested in looking for the missing veterans’ photos about a year ago, when he saw a traveling replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Since then, he’s found and submitted about 125 missing photos.
“I’m always looking on the internet, trying to find stuff,” said Hine. “There are websites where people post about their friends or relatives that died in Vietnam, and I try to email them (about the missing photos). I also use Facebook. Most of the messages I get back from people come about two months after I contacted them. People are unwilling to answer messages from people they don’t know.”
The project is important to Hine because he wants to make sure that those who sacrificed their lives in the Vietnam War are recognized.
“We don’t want any veteran forgotten, but especially the ones who gave their lives for our country,” said HIne. “The guys that came back from Vietnam weren’t treated very well at all, so the comrades they lost in the war should definitely be remembered.”
These photos, he said, will eventually be displayed at the Education Center at the Wall in Washington, D.C. for future generations to see.
“Some of these photos we will never find,” said Hine. “Considering how big of a time lapse it’s been (since the Vietnam War), some of the guys that died in Vietnam, their children are 60 years old or older.”
To aid in his search, Hine has created a Facebook page, Putting a Face with a Name for our Hoosier Vietnam Fallen. He also accepts photos or questions via his personal email account, firstname.lastname@example.org .