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50 Years Later: Stamford Soldier Killed In Vietnam Added To Memorial Wall

Pvt. Eugene Lyman Manselle III's sister Leslie and mother Eleanor at the ceremony where his name was added to Stamford's Memorial Wall in Veterans Park. Photo Credit: Elizabeth Carlson
Pvt. Eugene Lyman Manselle III's name has now been added to the city's Memorial Wall. Photo Credit: Elizabeth Carlson

STAMFORD, Conn. – The name of a Stamford man killed in an ambush in Vietnam was finally added to the city's Memorial Wall in Veterans Park on Tuesday.

The family of Pvt. Eugene Lyman Manselle III joined the local veteran community and Stamford Mayor David Martin for the ceremony. Manselle's name was added to the wall after a resident who went to school with him noticed that his name was not on the wall honoring Stamford's veterans who have died. 

Manselle grew up in Stamford and left Stamford High School at the age of 16 in 1965 to join the Army. Though initially stationed in Germany, he soon volunteered to go to Vietnam.

On the morning of June 19, 1968, Manselle and the C Company were ambushed by an overwhelming enemy force. The company was totally engulfed in smoke and small arms fire, and American gunships were brought in for support.

Manselle's platoon sergeant later said that he heard Manselle shout out to his fellow mates in C Company to see whether they were OK. Shortly after that, Manselle was shot and immediately killed. 

The battle would last several hours more, and the losses of C Company were staggering, with nearly every single man killed or wounded.

"The addition of his name will ensure that Manselle will be remembered for years to come along with other Stamford veterans who have been killed in action or died," the city said in a statement.

Manselle, the oldest of John and Eleanor Manselle’s 11 children, was born May 19, 1947. The Manselles’ first home in Stamford was a Quonset hut in a community built after World War II for returning soldiers and their families, but they soon moved into an apartment in Southfield Village.

Soon after Manselle enlisted, his family moved to Hartford, which is why his name had not been included on the roll of Stamford’s Vietnam War casualties. 

"It is only fitting that we add his name to our memorial, where he can take his place alongside the other 28 young Stamford men who gave their lives for their country," the city said in a statement.

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