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1st Battalion 1st Marines Vietnam 1965- 1971

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This site is a memorial to our fallen brothers and to the veterans in the 1st Battalion 1st Marine Regiment 1st Marine Division from 1965 - 1971 who served in Vietnam. 
We would like to invite all 1/1 Vietnam veterans to join us at our next reunion:
Our Stories:
52 Years Later -

 
Dennis Toms and Darrell Frykman August 2022
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Darrell Frykman and Dennis Toms

My name is Darrell Frykman HM2. I was attached to Delta 1/1 for a short period of time after I was with Kilo 3/7. As I remember, our job with Delta 1/1 was to provide security for the Seabees, keeping the Viet Cong from putting booby traps on the road.

“I thought I had bought the farm!”

October 14th, 1970, a date that I will never forget. As we set up our NDP, I had dropped my gear in a pile. I went to check in with the command post to see what the plan was for the next day. At that point I heard the most dreaded words, “In Coming.” There were too many guys in that area, so I decided to move to a different location for cover. I didn’t get very far when the mortar round flattened me. A picture of my folks flashed through my mind--I thought I had bought the farm!

 

That’s the last I remember until, I believe it was the Platoon Sgt. who came to check on me. I had been hit by some shrapnel in the back of my shoulder and my ribs. My ribcage hurt and it was hard to breathe. I was concerned I might have a lung problem, so I checked for bubbles on my chest and didn’t find any. A Marine helped me put a bandage on my wounds.

I then went to treat the other wounded. I vividly remember helping one Marine with a very serious head injury. Since my Unit 1 was destroyed by the mortar round that hit me, I was thankful that I had bandages in my bandolier. The other corpsman gave me his IV equipment to use on the Marine. We were loaded up on a chopper and taken to the 95th Evac. That’s the last I know of what happened to that Marine.

“I received a text stating Dennis Toms survived! What a great day!”

Oftentimes, on October 14th I would wonder about the fate of the young Marine I treated with the severe head injury. Not knowing the Marine’s name, I was unlikely to ever find out what happened to him. However, thanks to some divine intervention, my wife and I attended a concert by The Fabulous Armadillos called “What’s Going On? Songs of the Vietnam Era” in May of 2021 in St. Cloud, MN. Corporal Sam Verdeja spoke during the concert and happened to serve in Delta 1/1 in 1970. We were able to meet Sam after the concert and I asked him if he knew what happened to the Marine with the head injury. Sam did not, but he was the reunion coordinator for 1/1 and he had connections! A few days later, I received a text stating Dennis Toms survived! What a great day!

 

Dennis and I reconnected by phone shortly afterwards. In August 2022, my wife and I were able to meet Dennis and his wife Debbie. After 52 years, October 14th is a good day!

“Next thing I remember is being given the last rights”

From Dennis Toms: I have been told by others what happened on the day of Oct. 14th. However, I remember little. All that I remember of the whole day is the sound of several mortars. Next thing I remember is being given the last rights, I believe at Cam Ranh Bay. After that I woke up in Japan. I am thankful to Darrell and all the others that were there for me on that day. I was able to fill in the gaps from another Marine I have kept in contact with over the years. Meeting Darrell I was able to fill in more.

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