In Memory of SGT. Albert "Burl" Ives ........ 1st Platoon Sergeant
Albert Charles Ives ..... 60
Birth: Sep. 18th, 1948 Michigan, USA ______________________________ Death: Aug. 2008 Surfside Beach, Texas, USA
Leigh Freeman and Sgt. Albert "Burl" Ives
__Leigh Freeman & _____
Albert (Burl) Ives - Obituary
Albert served in Vietnam - Army and won several medals. He never married, not sure about children though, never mentioned any. His ashes were brought to MI in an urn and buried by family in the woods around Bitely MI beside his brother Loyd. We, the family members called him Junior or Big Al. He was a great lover of life.
Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.
Specifically: Buried in woods - hunting camp
SGT. Burl Ives & Tom Herndon
Sgt. Albert "Burl" Ives and a group of 1st Platoon ____________________ Tony Milton and "Burl"
___________________________Remembering Sgt. Albert “Burl” Ives by Leigh Freeman _______________________________________________________________
I was standing next to Sgt. Albert “Burl” Ives when I took this photograph of Charlie Company leaving Firebase O’Reilly on 22 July 1970. It was Charlie Company’s last combat assault during the 101st Airborne’s action around Firebase Ripcord. It was just the second time that Sgt. Ives and I boarded a slick together to sky-up off a firebase. The first time was when Charlie left Firebase Ripcord. _________________________________________________________________________________________________ _________________
When we left Ripcord on May 5, 1970, Rick Thomas and I were the M-60 team for Sgt. Ives’ squad. For two new guys, Burl was just Sgt. Ives then. Sgt. Ives was a squad leader who looked out for his men and knew how to handle his men during combat operations. Rick and I, as well as many other members of first platoon, soon came to appreciate this selfless and heroic buck sergeant, whose take on just about everything was, “It don’t mean nothin.” ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
For example, after leaving O’Reilly that July morning, the Charlie Company slicks headed to Hill 605 to support the Delta 2/506 mission to extract Delta 1/506 from Hill 805. When the Hill 605 LZ came into view, Burl pointed out the red smoke to his squad and shouted HOT LZ. Real soon it was our bird’s turn to land. Burl pointed to the LZ’s edge where we were to regroup, shouting JUMP AND RUN just seconds before the bird touched down. As we ran I tripped over a downed tree branch, falling flat on my face. Looking up, an abandoned NVA pith helmet was staring me in the face. I got up and ran faster. __________________________________________________________________ ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Burl positioned us on the LZ’s northeast edge to provide security, so the two Delta Companies could be extracted from the LZ. The slope below our position was being raked by fire from gunships flying overhead. Unexpectedly, CS gas gushed through our position causing me and others to panic, but not Burl. He held us at our firing positions barking orders to stomach the gas and to focus on our front to protect the LZ. The CS soon dissipated, and we were able to complete the mission. _____________________________________________________
That day wasn’t the first time that Burl had faced combat hazards with such heart. On Hill 902 during the early morning of July 2, 1970, the NVA attacked Charlie Company’s first and second platoons. Of that battle, the Firebase Ripcord Association says, “When the small arms and RPG fire began, Charlie Company reacted. Men fought like demons.” One of those men was Burl, according to eye-witness accounts. I understood he was put in for a Silver Star for his actions. ___________________________________________________________________ _
In the fall of 1970 on a moonless, black night somewhere between Firebase Rakkasan and the Song Bo River, Burl sat at his NDP fighting position doing his two hours of guard. When his time to sleep arrived, he woke-up this new-guy manning the same position. Before retiring to his poncho liner for sleep, Burl stepped to the side of the nearest tree to relieve himself. The groggy new-guy peered through the gloom at Burl and thought he was seeing the NVA on attack. So he clicked his M-16 to rock-and-roll and fired the entire magazine at Burl. He missed: barely three feet away stood Burl and he missed. Of course, the rest of the platoon began laying down fire to repel the NVA who wasn’t there. The platoon missed Burl, too. When daylight arrived, Burl was just his old cool self because as he always said, “It don’t mean nothin’.”
Sgt. Albert "Burl" Ives was a brave, kind soul who I’ll never forget. To his Currahee brothers, he will always be just "Burl".
"Thank you brother for a job well done". Until we meet again my friend ..... "Currahee"......"Stands Alone"
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