Today in Military History, July 8, 1959, First American Casualties in Vietnam

(R) Maj. Dale R. Buis, Army (L) Master Sgt. Chester M. Ovand, Army

On July 8, 1959, the first American combat casualties of the War in Vietnam occurred when a guerrilla strike hit a Military Assistance Advisory Group (MAAG) compound in Bien Hoa, 20 miles northeast of Saigon.  Army Maj. Dale R. Buis and Army Master Sgt. Chester M. Ovnand were killed in the ambush, apparently watching the movie “The Tattered Dress” while on break.