Date of Birth: 2/8/1944
Date of Casualty: 12/20/1969
Home of Record: COLLEGE STATION, TEXAS
Branch of Service: MARINE CORPS
Casualty Country: SOUTH VIETNAM
Casualty Province: PHOUC TUY
The bodies of two Aggies who fought in Vietnam were recently discovered more than 30 years after they gave their lives for their country. The bodies of Captain Carl Long, Class of 1966, and Second Lieutenant Donald Matocha, Class of 1967, are returning to the country after being discovered in Vietnam.
According to a Department of Defense report, Long, a casualty of a CV-10 crash in the Vung Tar Republic in December of 1969, was recovered by the Department of Defense and identified by the name inscribed inside his Aggie ring.
Long will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery on September 16, 2004.
Matocha, a former member of company A-2, died in action in April of 1968 when the Viet Cong ambushed his reconnaissance company.
According to an account by eyewitness Hospital Corpsman Stan Sellers, Matocha was shot and killed instantly in a firefight on Dong Ma Mountain. Due to heavy enemy fire, his body was not available for immediate recovery.
The People's Army of Vietnam later buried Matocha's body in a bomb crater. One of the men who helped bury him, farmer Nguyen Van Loc, reported the burial to the army's POW/MIA office in Hanoi in 1996.
Matocha will be buried in his hometown of Smithville, Texas September 18, 2004, after meeting a Marine honor guard in Austin on September 16.
Classmate and former member of Squadron 11 Mickey Batsell used to attend mass with Matocha and said that Motocha had the spirit of a true Aggie.
“We used to go to mass almost every morning during Lent when we were fish,” Batsell said. “One, because we needed all the spiritual guidance we could get, and also because it was a way to get out of morning formation.”
“He was kind of quiet, but he was the model Aggie. He did what he was supposed to do when he was supposed to do it. He was the nicest guy you could ever hope to meet. Someone you'd want, as we say in the military, to ‘cover your six.'”
The sacrifices of Long, Matocha and the more than 100 Aggies who died in Vietnam are not forgotten by current cadets in the Corps.
“We as cadets hold a great deal of respect for our fellow Ags who passed away in our country's past wars,” said Corps public relations officer Charles Glover. “John 15:13 says ‘Greater love hath no man than this; that a man lay down his life for his country (friends),' and we hope we can all live by their example.”
LONG, CARL EDWIN
CAPT US MARINE CORPS
VETERAN SERVICE DATES: 05/28/1966 – 12/20/1969
DATE OF BIRTH: 02/08/1944
DATE OF DEATH: 12/20/1969
DATE OF INTERMENT: 09/16/2004
BURIED AT: SECTION 68 SITE 50
ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY
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Michael Robert Patterson was born in Arlington and is the son of a former officer of the US Army. So it was no wonder that sooner or later his interests drew him to American history and especially to American military history. Many of his articles can be found on renowned portals like the New York Times, Washingtonpost or Wikipedia.
Reviewed by: Michael Howard