SD Vietnam War Memorial Dedication Please Support the Memorial Soldiers, Heroes, and teachers information

 

 



In Memory of U.S. Army Sergeant

Donald Warren Ollila

Sturgis, South Dakota, Meade County

                                            November 16, 1948 -- June 8, 1970

Killed in Action in Vietnam

  

Donald Warren “Don” Ollila was born on November 16, 1948, in Watertown, South Dakota, to Jean and Toivo (Ole) Ollila. He had three brothers: Dale, Richard, and Randall. He also had one sister, Suzanne. He and his family moved from Watertown to Sturgis, South Dakota, in 1961, and he graduated from Sturgis High School in 1967. He had plans to become an architect and had pre-registered at South Dakota School of Mines and Technology. He married Connie Muckler in 1969. Connie remembers, “Don was a fun-loving man who enjoyed life to the fullest. He loved riding motorcycles and working on his cars.”

Donald Ollila entered the service on August 28, 1968, at Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He volunteered for both Jump School and instant NCO school. He went overseas to Vietnam on September 11, 1969, with Company B, 3rd Battalion, 173rd Infantry Division.

Sergeant Donald Warren Ollila was killed in action on June 8, 1970, in his final month in Vietnam. He was killed when his platoon was on patrol; he had gone to get water for everyone, and he was shot in the thigh and bled to death on the field. His body was recovered and returned to the U.S. and he was then buried with military honors in the Black Hills National Cemetery, as are both of his parents.

Sergeant Ollila’s awards include: Marksman badge (M16 and M60 machine gun), Parachute Jump Wings, Combat Infantryman’s badge, Sharpshooter badge (M14), Good Conduct medal, National Defense Service medal, Vietnam Service medal, Vietnam Campaign medal, Bronze Star medal, Air medal, Army Commendation medal, Purple Hear medal (with Oak Leaf Cluster), and the Silver Star medal. But according to his brother, “He had many medals, but the one that meant the most to him was his Jump Wings.”

The following is Donald’s citation for the Silver Star:

Donald Warren Ollila is survived by his brothers: Dale, Richard, Randall, and his sister, Suzanne Monk; and his widow, Connie Fallat of Rapid City, South Dakota.

   

This entry was respectfully submitted by Alex Batt, 8th grade, Spearfish Middle School, Spearfish, South Dakota, on February 3, 2006. Information for this entry was provided by Dale Ollila, brother of Donald, and an application for a South Dakotan Veteran’s bonus. Additional information and profile approval by Connie Fallat, widow.

 


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