DONALD J SEAMAN - TSGT
- mount holly
- DATE OF BIRTH:
- July 08, 1930
- DATE OF CASUALTY:
- May 16, 1965
- BRANCH OF SERVICE:
- Air Force
- South Vietnam
Donald J. Seaman was born on July 8, 1930. His home of record is Mount Holly, NJ. Donald grew up in Schuylkill County, Locust Valley in Pennsylvania. His parents were Fred and Gladys Seaman. Donald was a 1950 graduate of the Vallery Forge Military Academy in Wayne. While there, he earned a sharpshooter's medal, studied artillery tactics and rode with the Harrier's Club, a junior horseback cavalry. Seaman volunteered for Korea first, leaving Penn State University early to join the Air Force.
He served in the US Air Force and attained the rank of Technical Sergeant (TSGT). He served in the Air Force for fifteen years and survived a tour of duty in Korea.
Seaman was killed in action on May 16, 1965. He was the first of thirty-nine Schuylkill County soldiers killed in Vietnam. Seaman's death was caused by a 500-pound bomb, just loaded aboard a B-57 that exploded and caused a chain reaction. The Air Force soldiers were going through routine mission preparations at Bien Hoa Air Base. Within seconds, neighboring airplanes, surrounded by crewman, were exploding and burning at the base 12 miles north of Saigon. Three more 500-pound bombs went off, then some napalm bombs, phosphorous fire bombs and finally some 750-pound bombs. Thirty American soldiers were killed, 100 more wounded. Among the dead was Season who was only 34 years old at the time of his death. Military investigators quickly ruled that sabotage had played no part in the massive explosion at Bien Hoa. Regardless, the explosion "caused more death, injury and destruction to U.S. forces than any single Communist attack of the war" up to that point, the Associated Press reported in 1965.
He left behind a wife, the former Mary Menalis, a Mahanoy City native, and three children, Donald, Joseph, and Mary, at their home in Mount Holly, New Jersey. He is listed on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial from Pennsylvania but his home of record was Mount Holly, NJ. He is buried at St. Joseph's Cemetery in Mahanoy City, Schuylkill County, PA.
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