CARMAN, ROBERT LEON
CARMAN, ROBERT LEON
Rank / Branch:
HOSPITAL MATE 3, U.S
3RD MARINE DIVISION
Date of Birth:
Awards & Decorations:
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ROBERT LEON CARMAN, HOSPITAL MATE CLASS 3, U.S. NAVY, MONAHANS, WARD COUNTY, TEXAS
AWARDS AND DECORATIONS
Corpman Badge, Purple Heart, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal
Robert was an Oklahoma native. After graduation he moved to Monahans, Texas to live and work with a brother. He met his wife, Judy who was an El Paso native. She was staying in Monahans with her sister. She and Robert began to date. They married in El Paso, before he went into the Navy. He and Judy are the parentt of a daughter, Susie who later graduated from Odessa Permian High School.
Coronado, Californai Naval Station
He was a two year member of the U.S. Navy having entered the Navy in the spring of 1966 from Monahans, Texas. He was received training as a corpman which was essentially a medic. He had attained the rank of HM3 E-4. He began his tour in Vietnam on March 7, 1968. He wife and daughter were living in El Paso at the time. He was assigned as a corpman to the Marine Corp and was assigned to the Combined Action Programs of the 3rd Marine Division. His unit of assignment was CAPS 2-4-1, CA Company 2-4, 2nd CA Group. The CAPS units began in 1966 where marines were assigned to provide security, training and civic action support to local villages in their primary units Area of Operation (AO). These Marines built living quarters near a village in order to be separate, but close enough to provide security and a presence.
The marines, usually a squad of about 12-15 men would patrol primarily at night, set ambushes and would engage any enemy found and would work with the local village on civil actions programs. They also developed intelligence and passed it on up the chain of command. The squad would usually split duties with half out on patrol and listening post duty and the other half able to act as a reactionary force in case they were needed. Normally the Sergeant and the Corpman would not go out on these night ambushes or patrols, but be available for combat patrols which were usually daylight operations. They would give assistance and treat and/or medivac the casualties. Normally, the Corpman would be available for the local village for medical assistance. HM3 Carman was described by his sergeant (now a retired Sergeant Major, who served in the Marine Corp for 30 years) as his right hand man. He had a fifth sense about things and was able to size up most situations. He was good in action and took care of his wounded comrades.
Talking strategy with Sgt Ike-Vietnam 1968
On August 10, 1968, one of the daylight combat patrols was involved a serious firefight and had several wounded marines. HM3 Carman and the new platoon sergeant went to assist. HM3 Carman had patched up the men and was assisting a Marine who could not walk to the medevac zone to wait for help. HM3 Carman and the wounded Marine were walking over a high point of a sand dune when one of them tripped a shaped charged boopy trap. It exploded and went up the back and legs of both men. Both died immediately.
Carman 1968, Radio Contact
HM3 Carman was buried with full military honors at the Fort Bliss National Cemetery in El Paso, Texas. His wife, Judy and daughter, Susie survived him. At the time of Robert's death, Judy was living in El Paso with her family. Judy and Susan now live in Odessa, Texas.
Fort Bliss National Cemetery, El Paso, Texas