Daniel Earnest Nelms

Private First Class, Army of the United States


From Hixson, Tennessee

26 November 1949 - 22 May 1970

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Daniel Earnest Nelms is on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Panel 10W Line 082.

01 Mar 2007

After all these years, I was astounded to find that no one had entered a memorial here for Danny. I met Danny in 1969 when we were both called to go to Knoxville for our pre-induction physicals.

Danny was one of those guys who never met a stranger, and once he decided he liked you, you had a friend for life. We began to hang out some that summer, and reported for the draft together that fall. We took our basic training together at Fort Jackson, and kept in contact when he went to Fort Sill for artillery AIT.

We reconnected when we went to Vietnam, and corresponded pretty regularly until his death. Danny left his parents, a fiancee', and a brother.

I was told he was killed on the firebase by a short round that exploded as it left the barrel of the gun.

One of the worst times of my life was the week of May 20, 1970. On that day, John Waalen, my platoon Sergeant for whom I was the RTO, was killed, and during the next couple of days my letters to Danny, and also to another great friend David Butcher, were returned. Three great guys, three huge losses. I still miss all of them.

The point-of-contact for this memorial is
a friend,
Don Hill

E-mail address is not available.

The database page for Daniel Earnest Nelms

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           Memorial first published on 01 Mar 2007
           Last updated 08/10/2009