STROHLEIN, MADISON ALEXANDER
Name: Madison Alexander Strohlein Rank/Branch: E5/US Army Unit: USARV, TAG, Task Force 1 Advisory Element Date of Birth: 17 May 1948 (Abington PA) Home City of Record: Philadelphia PA Date of Loss: 22 June 1971 Country of Loss: South Vietnam Loss Coordinates: 154910N 1071919E (YC487502) Status (in 1973): Missing in Action Category: 1 Aircraft/Vehicle/Ground: Ground Refno: 1756
Source: Compiled from one or more of the following: raw data from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA families, published sources, interviews. Updated by the P.O.W. NETWORK in 2000 with information from George Hewitt.
Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing)
REMARKS: INDICATONS OF SHOOTOUT W/NVA
SYNOPSIS: On June 22, 1971, Sgt. David M.A. Strohlein and three other U.S. soldiers were on a reconnaissance mission in South Vietnam. At 0300 hours, the four-man team entered their mission area by parachute, but were unable to link up on the ground.
At 0730 hours, Sgt. Strohlein radioed for an emergency medical evacuation for himself, and that he had sustained injury in the jump. From 0730 until 1100 hours, radio contact was maintained with him, but contact was eventually broken because of enemy movement near his position.
The following day, a rescue team was inserted in his vicinity. The team found Strohlein's weapon and evidence of a fire fight, however, they were not able to locate any other trace of Sgt. Strohlein's whereabouts.
It seems unlikely that the enemy would have left Sgt. Strohlein's weapon behind if they had crossed his original position, so it is logical to speculate that Strohlein left his position to try and evade an approaching enemy; perhaps having expended his ammunition, he discarded the gun.
Category 1 means that the U.S. has information that the enemy absolutely knows the fate of the individual in the category. Category 1 does not mean the individual lived or that he died, only that the enemy knows his fate. It is a category primarily reserved for those who were known to be captured.
Public record does not indicate how badly Strohlein was injured in the jump, or if there was evidence that he was wounded in the firefight. The record does not indicate if enemy movement in the area included approach and capture. However, since he was apparently not mortally wounded (having been on radio for 3 1/2 hours), it can be safely assumed that Sgt. Strohlein was captured or killed by the enemy in the area he was last seen.
The U.S. points to enormous "progress" being made in the area of the missing, having acquired through years of negotiating, almost half of the American remains that Vietnam is known to have stockpiled.
Meanwhile, over 1,000 eye-witness reports of living Americans who are captive in Southeast Asia "cannot be proven". One of the hundreds suspected to be alive by many authorities could be Sgt. Strohlein. How must it feel to be forgotten and abandoned?
========================= Reprinted with permission:
Subject: RE: Request for Information Date: Thu, 24 Aug 2000 07:04:22 -0400 From: George Hewitt <GHEWITT@Delex.com>
Your site is most informative. I knew Srohlein in training and served with him at CCS&CCN MACSOG in VietNam where we ran "deep' recon missions. His loss was painful and agonizing as we knew he was alive when they found him.
On a personal note, I remember being invited many times to his Hootch (house at CCS, MACSOG) to listen to some popular tunes he would play on his newly acquired tape recorder [a big investment for one of us back then] or eat some of the great home made cookies his Mom would send - along with Rolaids - that he seemed always in need of. She sent him great Care Packages and I was always a willing extra-refugee. He was quiet and non-assuming, but knew how to project in a group. He missed his parents a great deal and honored them in his talks with me. I was newer to the CCS Recon teams (not yet tested or accepted) and it was hard to get these guys to open up and share their thoughts or even experience - something you needed to be able to survive when you got your chance to go out on mission. He and I had gone through training at Ft. Bragg and he volunteered a great deal of the things I needed to know. He also volunteered to go out on a local training mission with me - sopmething that you have to understand only increased the odds of him getting killed [local is relative there]. Hey, I had already served one tour in VietNam as an infantryman (in combat) and here he was - almost newly arrived in country - but unlike me he had been "out there - eyes on target". The difference was that SOG missions encompassed many technical and "hunter" skills that the most hardened of combat veterans would have a hard time adopting. The depth of the missions and being "completely" in the terrain of the enemy was overwhelming at times. I liken it to books I have read about the American Indians and how they counted coup in the enemy camps - you had to darn near touch them to understand the thrill and fear of the situations. If you got into trouble it was like the movie "Run of the Arrow" (of course the AirForce did help when they could make it in - they were Angels in their own right). At CCN I ran a couple of missions as Strohlein was there too. He was regarded as one of the most steady team leaders. He had promised to include me on a team of his but it never turned out that way. At the end of my tour and I believe he had extended his, I was serving out my last month working in the TOC. I had the honor of helping prep his team for an airborne operation into the AO. This was "big" and it took a special guy to step up to the plate. Strohlein was the guy along with another gent and I forget his name (interesting history though as he was older, 101st ABN - non-SF) - we didn't have many like that! Anyway, I was on the tarmac on the night of his first attempt to parachute into the AO and he and I joked about those Rolaids and maybe I could make sure they got into a resupply mission if they managed to stay in long. We both knew the chances of that were slim. That night he came back without dropping due to bad weather or visibility over target. He was exhausted from standing on the ramp with all the gear. They were both soaked to the skin from nervous sweat - something that you don't get from the weather! Even the bravest have a smell that I beleive is produced by a fear at the core being. Strohlein said something that proved fateful as he got off the craft - exact phrase unrecalled "Next time we go the distance!" - Well, he eventually did and he continues to be there for me. I went on to serve a long career but he and one other hero friend (Dale Dehnke) were mentioned at my retirement as reasons I continued on - trying to always do right for them. I'll miss him/them - and he was one brave soul.
Date: Wed, 6 Mar 2002 09:45:33 -0800 (PST) Subject: David Madison Alexander Strohlein
The information you have on my uncle is incorrect. His name is "Madison Alexander Strohlein". Lose the David. I see other sites that keep doing that. If you look on the WALL, his name is as I spell it. Plus the comment from George Hewitt was a little confusing. Some of the things he said were very wrong. But he did say something though that made me believe he knew him.
Erik Madison Strohlein