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PFC THOMAS B. HOLDBROOKS
US MARINE CORPS

Thomas Bernard Holdbrooks was born Sunday, November 7, 1948, and graduated from McKinney High School in 1967. He joined the Marine Corps that summer, and arrived in Vietnam on December 11, 1967. PFC Holdbrooks was a rifleman with 3rd Platoon, Echo Company, 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, with a tactical area of operation in what was called the Arizona Territory, southwest of Da Nang. The Battalion was based at a place called Liberty Hill. On 28, December, 1967, Tommy's unit was inserted by helicopters into a place called Go Noi Island, for an operation, called Operation Auburn, against a large unit of Viet Cong and North Vietnamese. On that morning his squad was caught in a deadly ambush, and Tommy was cut down by heavy machine gun fire. The battle was very bloody for both sides. Tommy is buried at Ridgeview Cemetery in McKinney, and his name is listed on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington DC, at Panel 32E, Row 87.

Medals Awarded:
COMBAT ACTION RIBBON
PURPLE HEART
VIETNAM SERVICE MEDAL
VIETNAM CAMPAIGN RIBBON
GOOD CONDUCT MEDAL
NATIONAL DEFENSE RIBBON
MILITARY MERIT MEDAL
GALLANTRY CROSS with PALM 

VIETNAM GALLANTRY UNIT CITATION
VIETNAM CIVIL ACTIONS UNIT CITATION

 


 

7th Grade 1962 9th Grade 10th Grade 11th Grade Senior
   

 

COMPANY "E"
2nd Battalion 3rd Marines
1st Marine Division (Rein) FMFPac
FPO San Francisco 96602
9 January 1968

Mr. and Mrs. Bernard M. Holdbrooks
704 Anderson Street
McKinney, Texas

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Holdbrooks:
The death of your son, Private First Class Thomas B. Holdbrooks, United States Marine Corps, on 28 December 1967, in Quang Nam Province, Republic of Vietnam, is a source of great sorrow to me and his comrades in Echo Company. Please accept our deepest sympathy in your bereavement.

Thomas, as you may know, was assigned as a rifleman in the Third Platoon. On 28 December, about 20 miles southwest of Danang, Echo Company began an operation against North Vietnamese Army and Viet Cong forces. The Company entered the area by helicopter and, before noon, were heavily engaged with the enemy. In the midst of the intense fighting, at about 1:00 p.m., your son was hit and killed by enemy rifle fire. He died instantly and did not suffer. Thomas received the ministrations of Chaplain W. J. Houston, Lieutenant, Chaplain Corps, U. S. Navy.

Thomas joined our Company with friends he had met at Camp Pendleton, and in the short time he served with us, he made friends, especially in the Third Platoon. We regret that we did not have the opportunity to know Thomas better, but hope the knowledge that he will be missed in Echo Company will, in some measure, assuage your great grief.

It may comfort you to know that a memorial service was held at our Battalion Chapel.

If you feel that I can be of any help to you, please do not hesitate to write to me.

Sincerely yours,
I. J. CAHILL, Captain
Commanding

I remember Tommy Holdbrooks.  He was from south McKinney.  A very good kid. I would see him just about every day during the summer when I was a life guard at the swimming pool.  I also remember Ronnie Strickland from Melissa, he went to high school in McKinney.  God bless them all....Semper Fi!  Thanks Ronnie for your faithfulness to the Corp and to the kids that served.
JAMES GOODE

If you would like to leave a memorial message in the memory of Tommy Holdbrooks, Go Here.

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