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Today in History: First U.S. Troops Land in Vietnam

  • ** ADVANCE FOR USE JULY 4  ** Tony and Marilyn DeMilio, of New Smyrna Beach, Fla., look at the names on the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall at Rotary Park in Orange City, Fla., Saturday, June 30, 2007. "We were out riding and saw the sign," Tony DeMilio said. "I had a lot of friends over there." A veterans' group based in Michigan, and another, in Florida have both  built replicas of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington. The groups have fired off volleys of e-mails over a trademark dispute and threatened each other with legal action. (AP Photo/Joe Kaleita)

    ** ADVANCE FOR USE JULY 4 ** Tony and Marilyn DeMilio, of New Smyrna Beach, Fla., look at the names on the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall at Rotary Park in Orange City, Fla., Saturday, June 30, 2007. "We were out riding and saw the sign," Tony DeMilio said. "I had a lot of friends over there." A veterans' group based in Michigan, and another, in Florida have both built replicas of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington. The groups have fired off volleys of e-mails over a trademark dispute and threatened each other with legal action. (AP Photo/Joe Kaleita)  (AP2007)

  • ** ADVANCE FOR USE JULY 4  ** Tony and Marilyn DeMilio, of New Smyrna Beach, Fla., look at the names on the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall at Rotary Park in Orange City, Fla., Saturday, June 30, 2007. "We were out riding and saw the sign," Tony DeMilio said. "I had a lot of friends over there." A veterans' group based in Michigan, and another, in Florida have both  built replicas of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington. The groups have fired off volleys of e-mails over a trademark dispute and threatened each other with legal action. (AP Photo/Joe Kaleita)

    ** ADVANCE FOR USE JULY 4 ** Tony and Marilyn DeMilio, of New Smyrna Beach, Fla., look at the names on the Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall at Rotary Park in Orange City, Fla., Saturday, June 30, 2007. "We were out riding and saw the sign," Tony DeMilio said. "I had a lot of friends over there." A veterans' group based in Michigan, and another, in Florida have both built replicas of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington. The groups have fired off volleys of e-mails over a trademark dispute and threatened each other with legal action. (AP Photo/Joe Kaleita)  (AP2007)

On March 8th, 1965, the first U.S. combat troops arrive in Vietnam as 3500 Marines land at China Beach to defend the American air base at Da Nang. They join 23,000 American military advisors already in Vietnam.

Did You Know?

The Vietnam War lasted longer than any other military conflict in American history.

Over 58,000 US Military personnel died during the Vietnam War.

According to report from latinoadvocates.org, the Army did not have an accurate number of Latinos who served or died in the Vietnam War because the Department of the Army did not keep records of "Hispanics."  But the report estimates that over 3,741 Latino Americans died in the war.

More On This...

According to the Mobile Riverine Force Association, 170,000 Hispanics served in Vietnam.

The report says that one out of every two Hispanics who went to Vietnam served in a combat unity and one of five were killed in action. 

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