In Memory of CPL Arthur (Art) Hernandez  ........  1st Platoon

A "Currahee Brother" who was killed in action (KIA). We invite Currahee Brothers which were friends of his and knew him well to make some comments.

Art Hernandez, CPL E3 .... KIA April 1st, 1971 in Quang Tri, RVN _________ Cause: In Action, Friendly Artillery Fire__________________________ ___ Born: August 17, 1949 in Big Springs , TX _________________________                                                                                                                                                            Vietnam Memorial Wall Coordinates:  04W 099



Combat Infantryman's Badge, Parachute Wings, Bronze Star Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal


Arthur Hernandez was born and raised in Big Spring. He was the son of Lidia Tercero and Arthur F. Hernandez. He attended Big Spring High School and was a 1968 graduate of Big Spring High School. After high school, he attended Howard College and was employed at the Big Spring State Hospital. He enlisted in the Army in June, 1970 and had completed basic training and AIT in infantry at Fort Ord, California. He then completed parachute training at Fort Benning, Georgia and received training in radio communications at Fort Huachuca, Arizona before starting his tour in Vietnam..

He began in tour in Vietnam on January 10, 1971. He was assigned as an infantryman to Company C, 2nd Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment (Currahee). He was one of four men killed in a friendly artillery fire incident on April 1, 1971. He was posthumously promoted to Corporal and received a Bronze Star Medal posthumously and the medals were presented to his family in a ceremony at St. Thomas Catholic Church in Big Spring on July 15, 1971. ____________________________________________________________________________
He was buried with full military honors in the Mount Olive Cemetery in Big Spring, Texas. He was survived by his parents and his two sisters, Mrs. Mary Ann Rodriguez of Lawton, Oklahoma, and Miss Linda Sue Hernandez of Big Spring, by his paternal grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. A.M. Hernandez of Big Spring and his maternal grandmother, Mrs. Susanna Bonillia of California.



Memorial Service for CPL Arthur Hernandez, Saturday May 21st 2022

Our Charlie Company Memorial Team with 10 members from 8 states came together in Big Spring, TX for the Saturday May 21st Memorial Service for CPL Arthur Hernandez. We had a beautiful memorial with a large group of veterans who joined in to pay personal respects.  There were over 100 people in attendance, not counting the Charlie Co team. We had many family and old school friends who personally knew Arthur; along with the VFW-AMVETS Team, the local Patriot Guards and many individual community veterans who came out for the service.

The preparation of the Battlefield Cross was provided R. Christiansen, J. Krupiczowic, G. Mountcastle. 
The Flag Setup prepared by G. Shuman, C. Kato, J. Minahan, J. Harris

Rolland Christiansen opened the ceremony by recognizing the Charlie Company Memorial Team. Gary Gilliam welcomed the family and friends and recognized the large group of veterans who were in attendance. He then called on Jose Villagrana to provide the Invocation Prayer. 

Tom Weides told why it had taken 51 years and our journey to get to Big Spring TX to remember our Brother CPL Arthur Hernandez.  Cal Kato then read the poem "Soldiers Reflection" about what life was like in Vietnam and with Charlie Company.  A very close friend and classmate told of what it was like growing up with Arthur. It was very enlightening and humorous at times as he described all the great adventures he and Arthur had gotten into.  Bill Orsak then told of what life with Charlie Company was like along with the bond and brotherhood that continues on today to hold us Veterans together. To us, Arthur was a friend and brother.

Sergeant Rolland Christiansen told of the days leading up to April 1st event and what took place in the early hours leading up to Arthur's death along with his 3 brothers in arms.  A letter was presented from Don "Doc" Kemp describing the efforts to save their lives.  This letter was private, and presented to the family members. Presentations were made by Tom Weides, Jerome Minahan, Bill Orsak, James Harris, Glenn Shuman, Cal Kato, John Krupiczowicz and Gary Mountcastle. 

Sergeant Christiansen then called the Company to "Order" and a roll-call was given.  With all the men responding a loud  "Present Sergeant". He called out for "Hernandez", "CPL Hernandez", "CPL Arthur Hernandez"; as all was silent, Gary Gilliam stepped forward and called out "He is here Sergeant, He lives within us".  Glenn Shuman then read "Live Brother Live" a poem of how we continue to live for our fallen brothers. The Charlie Co Team was then called forward to individually laid their coins and paid their respects to the gravesite of our Brother CPL Arthur Hernandez.

On behalf of  the 10 man Charlie Co team, Sergeant Christiansen then extended the invitation to all of the other veterans there, to come forward and pay their respects, and many did. Tears flowed from the eyes of the crowd and many of those local veterans who came out and paid their respects.

The Honor Guard Team from Ft. Hood then came forward. They unfolded the American Flag and as they held the flag proudly opened, "Taps" was played.  The flag was then refolded and prepared for the family. Upon the completion of the Honor Guards folding the flag, the Honor Guard presented the flag to Bill Orsak who inspected the folding, then turned and presented the flag to Sergeant Christiansen who once again inspected the folding, and then graciously presented the American Flag to Susie the sister of Arthur. Jerome Minahan and James Harris then folded and presented the 506th battle flag to the family. 

The Charlie Company Memorial Team was then invited to have lunch with the family at the Spanish Inn Cafe.  The family now addresses  us as their new family. 

Thank you to the Charlie Co men who were able to attend;

Calvin Kato – California             Gary Mountcastle – California   Bill Orsak – Texas   John Krupiczowicz - Illinois
Jerome Minahan - Arkansas   Glenn Shuman – Oklahoma   James Harris – Wyoming 
Rolland Christiansen – Missouri   Gary Gilliam - Missouri   Tom Weides – Nebraska

Gary Gilliam


"Thank you brother for a job well done".  Until we meet again my friend ..... "Currahee"......"Stands Alone"

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RVN Ribbon____          _____Air Medal Ribbon______          ___Bronze Star Ribbon


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