• bloomfield
  • Essex
  • November 18, 1930
  • November 19, 1968
  • Marines
  • RANK:
  • CAPT
  • KIA
  • South Vietnam


Charles F. Abene was born on November 18, 1930. His home of record is Bloomfield, NJ. He was the son of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Abene, life-long residents of Bloomfield. He had a brother John Abene and sister Mrs. John Epley.

He served in the US Marine Corps and attained the rank of Captain (CPT). Captain Abene, a career Marine, enlisted in the Corps at the age of 15, and served his country over 22 years. He lived at 6004 Buckskin Street, Springfield, VA and was expected to return home from Vietnam for retirement in February.

Abene received his education at the Sacred Heart School in Bloomfield, and Bloomfield High School. He also attended Fairleigh Dickinson University and Union College in Texas.

Abene was killed in action on November 19, 1968. According to word received from the Defense Department, Captain Abene "sustained multiple fragmentation wounds of the head and body during a hostile rocket attack in Vietnam." He was 38 years old the day before his death. Survivors include the Captain's widow the former Ann Spezzano of Bloomfield, and four children, Linda, Karen, Charelen, and Charles Abene. Abene had a military funeral in Arlington National Cemetery. He rests in Section 2 of Arlington National Cemetery.

Several people have left remembrances on at for Charles Abene:

"I knew Captain Abene when growing up in Hitchcock, Texas. I was good friends with his daughter Linda. I remember the first time I saw Captain Abene in his dress blues. He truly looked the part of a Marine. When he received orders to go to Vietnam, the family moved back to Bloomfield, VA. Some of our friends stayed in touch with Linda and passed on news to us about Captain Abene and his tour. I remember to this day when we received news that he had been killed in action. This was the second person I knew that had been killed in Vietnam and not the last. I saw Linda, her mom and brother Chuck in 1971. I was in Virginia on my way to Vietnam. Captain Abene, thank you for your service and giving the ultimate sacrifice for our country. I think of you and your family often and hope and pray that they have fond memories of you." From a friend, Tim Cook, June 20, 2003.

"Semper Fi, Captain Charles F. Abene. It was an honor to serve with you, and the man I got to know in your final hours will always be part of my memories. It was on the eve of your final birthday, that it was you that gave me a special gift, and I thank you for it! You were monumental in saving my life, and I will always see you as my hero! God bless you and keep you Captain, and I'll see you on the other side! Respectfully from a USMC Brother in combat and friend till the end, Dennis R. DiPentino on September 27, 2004."

"I first met Captain Abene when reporting for duty as the Navy Chief Hospital Corpsman, MCRTC, Galveston, Texas. He was great guy and had a terrific family. They helped us find a place to stay in Hitchcock and get us settled in. At that time he was a sergeant and received his commission while at the MCRTC. He shipped out to Vietnam shortly after receiving his commission. It was a terrible shock to hear of his death. I heard he was writing a letter home when shrapnel came through his tent and killed him. I too think of him often. He was a great guy. From a friend, Billy Lambert on May 23, 2007."

There are also several remembrances on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund's website:

"I remember my dad as a loving father and very dedicated to the Marine Corp. I remember him getting haircuts every week if not more then that...and how he polished his shoes till you could see your face. He was a great bowler...300 to be exact. Loved to dance and exercised a lot! Miss him very much but I am also very proud of how he served his country and giving of his life us all!!!" Posted by his daughter Karin Desloge. On October 19, 2009.

"Dad, I will always remember you as my hero. I did not get the chance to really get to know you, being so young when your life was taken. I missed out on a lot of things without you, but will always think of you as my hero. I never really got the chance to tell you that of my feelings for you. Thank you for the supreme gift that other may live in freedom. I love you! Your son."
Posted by his son, Charles F. Abene II on September 19, 2007.

Sources: Various websites, newspaper articles, and NJVVMF.


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