The middle-aged man who had wanted to be a Catholic priest since the fourth
grade had been just that for nearly ten years. Now he felt it was important to serve
his Country as well as his God and enlisted as a Chaplain in the Army. At the age of
38 he volunteered for Airborne training, then went to Vietnam with the 101st Airborne
Ever mindful of the suffering around him, the brave Father went into the field
with the young soldiers again and again...ministering to their spiritual needs and helping
to bind up the broken bodies of the wounded. When his year of duty
ended, he volunteered to remain for another tour...his boys needed him.
After more than 50 encounters with the enemy, he was one of three chaplains
joining paratroopers for a jump into the 1967 battle for Dak To. During the
horrible battle of that afternoon, five times he left a position of safety to risk his
life to save the wounded. All day he tended broken bodies, bandaged the wounded, and
comforted the dying. As darkness fell the heroic chaplain knelt to administer Last
Rites to a dying soldier when an errant 500-pound bomb fell near him. A man of God
who had lived for others, vanished in the explosion.