CHAMPAGNE THOMAS EUGENE
MARK WAYNE BURCHARD
PFC - E3 - Army - Regular
1st AVN BDE 189th Assault Helicopter Company
19 year old Single, Caucasian, Male
FromBorn on Jan 29, 1950
From CARMONT, CALIFORNIA
His tour of duty began on Jul 26, 1969
Casualty was on Nov 17, 1969
HOSTILE, HELICOPTER - CREW
AIR LOSS, CRASH ON LAND
Body was recovered
Panel 16W - - Line 86
Mark Burchard to the best of my recollection came to the 189th in July. He was a mechanic and had promised his family that he would not fly. As we all had felt, flying was the utmost and exhilerating experience. We all loved it.
Mark was a big "kid" but extremely good natured with a terrific sense of humor. Couple with his mischievous side and you have one terrific friend. We spent many hours in the bunker (second to the last at the end of the runway) talking about home and what we were going to do when we got out of the Army.
Mark was from Carmichael, CA but originally from Wisconsin. His brother was also serving in the Air Force in Vietnam at the same time.
When Mark got killed (11/17/69) I had just made E-5 and was about to DEROS on 12/06/69. WO Wilson was the AC and from the accounts that I had received Mark had sustained a fatal head wound during an insertion near an NVA base camp. It was a running firefight with Mark's body in tow. The 189th slicks came and rescued the crew with Mark's body.
This is what had been told to me. To the best of my recollection the crew chief was Randy Olsen.
Mark was my best friend in the 189th. He was a good man and his body was saved by the gallant pilots, crew and members of the 189th.
I hope that this has been helpful. Sometimes at night all of the details of being in Vietnam come to me in vivid clarity and color. I guess it is the same with all of us.
This year it is my sincere wish to attend the reunion..... Take care, Milt Raymond, Avenger 533