John Andrew Jakovac – Sergeant, United States Army


John Aandrew Jakovac was born on April 10, 1947 and joined the Armed Forces while in Detroit, Michigan.

He served in the Army, 25th Infantry, and attained the rank of SSGT/E6. He began a tour of duty on May 31, 1967.

By: Chris Johnston

Jakovac had extended his tour and was in the LRRPs. He was the leader of his five man team, they were ambushed and all were killed on the evening of 30 May 1967. Two bodies were found the next day. The other three, including Jakovac, were not recovered until the 1990s. Jakovac, Mcgar, and Fitzgerald were buried at Arlington National Cemetery on 9 April 1997. Jakovac arrived in Vietnam in Jan 66 and was an E-5 when killed. His DEROS was July 1967.

As a LRRP he was a member of the Headquarters Company of the 3rd Brigade Task 25th Infantry Division, operating in the vicinity of Duc Pho, South Vietnam. This was a VC stronghold at the time.

On 30 May, his team was under the operational control of the 2nd Bn of the 35th Infantry Regiment. It was their first operation under Bn control. They were inserted into the position of the Bn recon platoon and were then told to go off in daylight and check a burning hut at the base of a hill. They were spotted by VC. The LRRP team then moved to their layup position to wait for nightfall. During this period the VC had time to set up an ambush. When they moved out at dark, they were attacked, there was a short firefight, and all five Americans were killed. Extensive searches were conducted the next day and thereafter for the missing.

Jakovac and McGar, at least, were basic grunts, high school dropouts with nothing better to do I guess and who extended their tours. Fitzgerald was a new guy, just out of high school that had recently arrived in Vietnam. I know less about Rogerson and Flowers (their bodies were recovered the next day). Just average guys that died a long time ago, a long ways away. I pray for them often and will remember them always.

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