DAVID ALLEN JOHNSTON
Born on Nov. 20, 1949
From CANAL WINCHESTER, OHIO
Casualty was on Mar. 3, 1969
in QUANG NAM, SOUTH VIETNAM
Panel 30W - - Line 25
M Co. 3/5,
half of 1st squad, 1st plt., Aug. '68
Marine, Les Thompson, Dave Johnston, Richard Reed
courtesy of Ron Thayer)
David Johnston served with the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines,
M Co. He was Killed In Action during Operation TAYLOR COMMON. Cpl. Johnston's
name stands proudly on the Mike 3/5 Wall of Honor.
Semper Fi, Brother Marine. We will never forget.
1st plt. "M" Co. 3/5,
late Jan. 1969
standing from L-R: Ron Christianson (Millville, CA),
Les Thompson (Orlando, FL), Richard Reed
(Knoxville, IA), Mike Alden (Manly, IA), David
Johnston (Pinkerting, Ohio), Simpson, and
kneeling, Luther Maxwell (only known picture of Luther,
unless someone else has one they don't know about).To anyone not aware,
Christianson,Thompson, and Johnston were K.I.A. on
Hill 332. Also in rememberance K.I.A. on 332, Dennis Merryman,
Joey Freeman. I pass this picture on with a sincere appreciation
for the Freemans and Richard Reed for sharing this
wonderful picture of members of 1st squad, 1st plt. "M"
Co. 3/5. Semper FI.~Mike Alden
in my thoughts
We spent many months
together in the same squad. I knew of you, very well, but personally,
I did not. I always felt you had too many other Marines in your life,
and I would stand back.You were a very good leader, and I respected
you. You were a Marine that I knew would go out of his way to help in
any situation.You fell by enemy fire beside me. I reached out and touched
you. I looked at your face.You were at rest. David, this is my memorial
to you. I will never forget you. I think of you often. I have prayed
to God, I continue to pray to God to place his eternal love in you,
and give you peace and happiness forever. I salute you as you were an
outstanding Marine. Forever in my thoughts, Respectfully, Michael
Carlson, David Johnston, Richard Reed, Burns
Front: Ron Thayer, Les Thompson
of Ron Thayer)
Thompson was Killed In Action 5 March 1969, see Leslie
Thompson Memorial page)
Johnston (right) and Rock Giambrocco
(Picture courtesy of Rock Giambrocco)
for My Life
name is Rocco E. Giambrocco. I served with Dave in the 3rd Battalion,
5th Marines, Mike Company during all of 1968 and 1969 until the day
he was KIA. I was wounded in the same action.
Dave and I had also been wounded at the same time in May 1968 on Hill
1192. We took heavy casualties in that battle and we lost the third
member of our little group, Rick Hoffman. I was wounded first - I had
been walking point. Rick came to my aid along with Dave. Rick was shot
in the head and Dave and I pulled him to a safer position and I defended
while Dave attempted to save Rick's life.
Rick lasted for several hours and then quietly passed away. The small-arms
fire was extremely heavy and Dave decided it was time to get me out
of there. In that attempt, he was wounded by shrapnel from an exploding
Dave still pulled me to safety and we awaited rescue by chopper. I went
out on the chopper first, and we were shot down. Dave came out on another
chopper and we eventually hooked up again at the NSA Hospital in Da
Nang. As we recovered, we went to a place on the base and had matching
cigarette lighters made and we kept them as "good luck charms."
On March 1, 1969 I was wounded and evacuated by chopper. Dave was KIA
two days later. His death haunted me for decades. It still does. Dave
was my friend and he was the man who saved my life. I owed him mine.
He was a good Marine, a GREAT friend, and a tremendous young man. I
miss his laugh and smile, I can still hear his voice and the accent
he gave to some words because he was from Ohio. He used to laugh at
MY accent from Massachusetts.
I tried to locate Dave's family for many years. I even wrote to the
Office of the Governor in Ohio and they actually researched for me and
responded. Unfortunately they could not locate his family.
I eventually took the lighter that matched his, and I buried it with
an American flag in a beautiful wooded area in Ashby, Massachusetts.
I carved his name and information on a marker and I left it. I never
returned to it. I tried to put it all behind me. I cannot.
I will be riding my Harley to Washington DC just prior to Memorial Day
2000. I will visit The Wall and I will visit Dave. I will say a prayer
for him, thank him for the life he gave back to me, and tell him that
he is thought of often, and loved by his friend from 'M' Company 3rd
Battalion 5th Marine Regiment 1st Marine Division. Unit - Corps - God
God Bless you Dave, and thank you. Wish I had you to talk with now and
then. You are remembered. By the way, the word for the jungle is 'BUSH'
not ' BOOSH'. Hahaha. Remember? Semper
Fi, brother. ~Rock
in by Mike Alden, June 8, 2007)
A. JOHNSTON MEMORIAL, MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND 2007
Memorial Day services were more than anyone could ask! Just one of the
best things we all got together for, honoring David Johnston.
David's sister was there, which was a surprize for a lot of members
of the POST #283 OF THE AMERICAN LEGION and the Mike
Co. guys. ALSO, none of us knew David has a brother, Robert.
That topped the cake! We were definately not expecting this. We came
to finish what we couldn't for 38 years. To pay our respects to David
and honor him. David's sister and brother saw what brotherhood and loyality,
and love we have among us, and for their brother. I believe a whole
new outlook for David's family has taken place, especially concerning
the United States Marine Corps and our country. All of us who went to
honor David, Capt.Pachello's letter of honor for his former Marines
and David, to go to a fellow Marine's resting place after 38 years is
why "Semper Fi" stands proudly in the United States Marine
Corps...We ARE always faithfull, I am proud to say....Mike Alden
Lt. Ed Browder, Paul O'Connell, behind Paul's left
is Joe Smith, behind Joe is Richard Reed,
in front of Richard is "Rock" Giambrocco.
Rock has his arm around David's sister. Behind David's sister is Jim
Turnage. Behind Jim is Lt. Tom Mahlum. Right
side of Marine flag,Tom Wiseman. Behind Tom is what
you can see of Ron Thayer, to Ron's left is Corpsman
Bob Aloisio. In front of Tom Wiseman is David's brother,
Bob, Robert's son is next. Behind Robert's son is Art
Diablo, I'm next, Mike Alden, then Jerry
Lomax, and an unknown to me. The gentleman was a very good
friend of David's.