America's Fallen Hero's

CPL William A. Buck, Jr.

William A. Buck, Jr. was a Fayetteville hometown boy. He earned his Eagle Scout rank and was pinned at Bonnie Doone Baptist Church. He graduated from Fayetteville High (now Terry Sanford) in 1966. His father was a career Army man, so after life-guarding at Wrightsville Beach, Billy as he was known by everyone, decided to sign up for the Marine Corps. He did his basic training at Parris Island, South Carolina and from there it was Lejeune and other training necessary to become a 3rd Reconnaissance Marine.

In November of 1967, Billy left for South Vietnam. He served thirteen months, and returned home to Fayetteville for a thirty day leave as he had signed up to return on an extended tour. The mission of a Recon Marine was to go out in small teams to gather information for the other battalions. The remainder of his story is told in a book called, “Never Without Heroes” by Lawrence Vetter, Jr.

Mr. Vetter writes, “Team ‘Flight Time’ was led by Cpl. William A. Buck, Jr. who was beginning an extended tour and was an experienced Reconner. The team landed at 0930 hours on June 2nd….the night must have gone by quietly until 0250 hours. At that time the patrol was surprised by an enemy force of unknown size. At 0320 radio communication was lost with the team, after the last transmission of ‘Breaker, breaker, God help us!’ The reaction team leader after arriving at dawn amplified his feelings about the savagery of the fight. He said that Corporal Buck had been found ten meters away from the others with his K-bar in his hand and had apparently gone down wounded and fighting hand-to-hand against numbers that overwhelmed him. The bodies of the Americans had been ripped by both small arms fire and explosives. The team Flight Time Marines was the last team totally lost by the battalion.”

We will never forget our brother Billy. “All gave some, some gave all.”