Monte Stamm h/t to Capt. R. Richards
from Connie Stamm Shaw:
Thank you so much for deciding after 30+ years to open this website. I am a sister of Monte Stamm, KIA 1969. I was 17 years old when we received the news of Monte's death; my parents much younger than I am now when they heard the news no parent should ever have to hear. We were, and are, a strong family and our faith and trust in God sustained us. Knowing that some of you were there and knew Monte and can relate to us the events of that day has helped us. It's hard to believe the pain of losing someone can be so fresh after all these years- for us it was a lot of "not knowing". You've really helped. Thanks! God bless you all.
from Monte's family:
Thanks for your email. Although it may seem like a little thing, it's good to hear how you all played football, etc. and had some fun times even though you all were in Hell on earth. I was only 13 when Monte was killed, but as I've grown up and now have a couple of sons, I wonder sometimes how my parents handled everything so well. I know their faith in Jesus was, and continues to be their mainstay. Their faith and bringing us up to recognize and develope our own faith has sustained all of us. As you mentioned, it was real tough right at Christmas time, and for the next few years. But Monte was the oldest of six children, so we all just had to go on. The youngest was 10 years old then. Mom and Dad are farmers and had dairy cows, so they were busy with all the farm chores, etc. I remember neighbors and friends pitched in to help as best they could. Also, we spent Christmas Eve at the funeral home and then we had a severe snow storm the day after Christmas (the day of the funeral), but the County Road Dept. got out and cleared the roads for the funeral, etc. even though schools were closed for the Holidays, etc. It was pretty bad for a few years, but then a brother got married and when the grandchildren started coming along, life got a bit more joyful again. It's really strange how the saddest times in your life oftentimes bring out the best in friends and family. Well, I don't want this to be a downer. Life has been good to me and my family in spite of this major tragedy. We miss Monte terribly. But life goes on and, as I mentioned, our faith in God gives us much peace and comfort. I'll share your email with my family (Mom and Dad and brothers and sisters). Thanks so much. Also, it is so good to hear from some of you guys who knew him. We appreciate you all remembering him at your reunions, etc. You all have really made a difference to us.
From: Monte Stamm's Sister
God bless you for submitting your "Remembrances" to the web site "www.atroop412cav.com". It just so happens my niece is working on a paper for her history class at in college and came across this site in looking for information concerning Vietnam. What a bittersweet moment, and how excited she was to find data about her uncle, my brother, Monte Stamm. As you may imagine, back in 1969, at the time of his death, my family received very little information as to what happened, etc. I was just 13 years old at the time and didn't ask too many questions - - and still haven't. It was and is all to painful for parents and siblings to talk much about. However, just this past May, I read through many letters which Monte has sent home right up to the time of his death as I gave my Mom a new keepsake chest for her birthday. Reading those letters after all those years helped a lot and I did find out he was killed by an RPG, but to read something so current by someone who actually knew him was wonderful. Thank you. There's a big piece missing with our brother gone. Dad is now 78 and Mom is 73. Monte was their first born. Again, I really appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts. After 30+ years this is a bit of connection that really helps a lot. I trust that life has been kind to you and I pray that God blesses you with peace.
From: "George Gersaba"
Date: Sun, 15 Sep 2002 19:07:53 -1000
For reasons that I did not know about at the time, Capt. Spruill wanted APC's instead of tanks to lead the troop up Hill 162. Somehow, track 1-2, with me driving, was the first vehicle going up the hill. The terrain was mostly low scrub brush. It was quite dry, but at the bottom of the ridge, there was this muddy depression. Our tanks were deployed behind us, waiting for us to occupy the ridge before they moved up and crossed that depression. I was about 1/2 of the way up when one of our tank sergeants called me on the radio, telling me to stop and come back to the bottom of the hill. One or more of our platoon tanks were stuck in the muddy depression and needed some topside security while they worked on the problem. I dutifully turned around with the rest of the 1st platoon scouts. I recall Doc Parker was riding along with us that day. Meanwhile, the 2nd platoon scout tracks overtook us and barreled up the hill. They were in good spirits as we passed. I distinctly remember the good-natured yelling and middle fingers they shot us. As soon as they crested, an RPG hit the lead vehicle, driven by Monte Stamm. Stamm was killed outright and I think his TC, the platoon leader, was slightly injured. Doc Parker jumped out of my track with his kit and headed uphill, catching a ride with another track. When he returned, he told us the details. We made it to the top of the hill later, after Stamm was medivac'd. I didn't even feel weird that it might have been me instead of Stamm. It never mattered because death & injury was just so random.
My name is Floyd Weaver and Stamm was a great friend of mine. I was driving the track behind him when his track was hit. After it was over I drove his track back to base. I have a picture of me at the wall with a reflection pointing to his name. If you have any questions please fell free to e-mail me.( It's my wifes e-mail address Floyd Weaver )
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