Posted by David Martin on Jun 10, 2019
Tom Terrell organized the Memorial Day program, where several members of our club told a story about a member of the armed service who gave his life in combat for our country. It was a very moving tribute. June 6th was the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landing in Normandy during World War II.
Jeff Harris told the story of his friend Jacob Leicht. Jacob was a corporal in the U.S. Marine Corp, and was born on July 4th, 1985. He served in Afghanistan, and was wounded when a bomb took out his Humvee. He spent two years recovering, and pleaded his case to be sent back to active duty. He did return to his battalion, but died within a month of his tour of duty. He was the 1,000th soldier to die in the conflict. His younger brother had enlisted just nine days before Jacob was killed, and looked forward to serving with his brother in Afghanistan. 
Ashley Phillips relayed how Javier Paredes grew up in a difficult situation at home and was eventually was brought up in foster care. He ended up at Hill Country Youth Ranch where he was nurtured and cared for by the staff and family at the ranch. He was learned well and enjoyed helping others at the ranch, especially the younger ones. Javier worked at the Lakehouse Restaurant here is Kerrville, where he was remembered as a hard worker.
Corporal Paredes joined the Army, and became a medic, serving in Iraq. In 2007, he was killed in a rocket propelled grenade attack in Baghdad. 
Jeff Anderson told the story of his good friend from high school and college, Sandy Stroud.  
 As their sophomore year in college in ‘67 drew to a close... Sandy made the fateful decision to enlist in the Army, planning to later return to College and pursue a medical career like his Father. In August he deployed to Fort Polk & October to Vietnam after one last gathering with friends. 
Sandy was part of Operation McArthur in the area known as Đắk Tô, which lies in a valley in the S Vietnam Central Highlands surrounded by ridge-lines that rise up 4000’.  The Americans were badly outnumbered, and Sandy was one of the troops killed.
Sandy was the first of Jeff’s classmates to die in Vietnam. His funeral led by best friend Mike Mullen’s father was overflowing with friends who came home to Corpus to honor their friend.


Loyd Painter was a naval officer on the SS Liberty in 1967, during the Six Day War north of the Sinai Peninsula. The Liberty was attacked by Israeli Air Force planes and  torpedo boats in International Waters. The attack was reported to be an accident by the Israelis, where they mistakenly took the Liberty for an Egyptian ship. Others dispute this claim.

Thirty four Americans were killed on the ship and many wounded, including Lloyd. Two of Lloyd's good friends died during the attack, and he later had the difficult task of accompanying their widows to the ship yard back home to retrieve their belongings. The survivors of the attack were reassigned and separated, apparently to keep them from telling their stories.

Roy Boudreaux story was about his friend William Bitsenbarger, who he served with in Vietnam.  William was part of Charlie Company, and his role was on a helicopter unit which rescued soldiers from the dense undergrowth in the jungle. He operated a hoist to bring the wounded back into the helicopter, but on this occasion he volunteered to go down to the ground and assist the troops first hand. He made numerous rounds and continued redistribute ammo and help the wounded, but was eventually was one of 100 out of 120 men killed in the battle.
William was awarded the Air Force Cross and the Purple Heart for his missions.