Alexandria, Virginia, US
United States Army
CPL, B CO, 2ND BN, 505TH INFANTRY, 82ND ABN DIV
Binh Duong Province, South Vietnam, 05/29/1969
Herman or Herm or Hermie, as he was called by our family, was born in Alexandria, Virginia on 2-19-46. His only brother, Robert was born 3 years laters and they were the best of buddies. Their teenage sisters, Marilyn, Donna and Minta enjoyed spoiling both of them. In spite of this competitive attention, the boys grew up to be outstanding patriotic Americans.
The Judy family built a cabin on 50 acres in Viewtown, Va. in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains. Weekends were spent there and treasured memories were created. This was where Herm belonged. He loved fishing and hunting. He had a WW II Jeep which he and Robert and best buddy “Bootie” Smith used to ride the countryside. He would have been so proud that the street to the property is now named “Herman Judy Lane”. He frequently brought firewood from “Easy Mountain” as our Dad named the place, to our homes. He would then load the old pick up truck with toys and appliances to take back to the needy people of Viewtown.
Herm attended school in Fairfax County, Va. where he participated in collegiate wrestling and he played trumpet in the marching band and the concert band. He looked very handsome in his red and blue uniform. After graduating from Edison H.S. he studied drafting at Columbia Tech. He was soon employed as a draftsman by Bell Communications.
One evening in 1963, Herm and I were at a political rally for our Congressman Joel Broyhill. Two swastika bearing men came running down the aisles of the auditorium to attack Rep. Broyhill at the podium. Herm was the first to jump on stage to subdue the intruders. He was always there to help.
He was married on May 30, 1968 to June, a local girl whom he met at the Franconia Fire Dept. Herm was a volunteer fireman and he was proud of the work, as he loved to help people in need. He knew that he would be drafted soon, so he enlisted in the army to fulfill the obligation that he felt for his country.
He arrived in Vietnam on 1-7-69 and was assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division. Each morning at 6:15AM, he would wake and announce to everyone as to how many days he had left in Vietnam before he headed home to Virginia. Everyone would groan. He missed his music so much that my Mother sent a harmonica to him. He loved Johnny Cash, Tammy Wynette, Marty Robins and Al Hirt.
On the evening of May 29, 1969, Herm’s “Tiger Platoon” was on a combat operation nine miles NW of Saigon. The enemy advanced on their ambush position with rockets, machine guns and small arms. Herm was mortally wounded and died instantly.
When Robert came to my home to tell us of Herm’s death, I crumbled and Bob supported me. Herm had convinced us that he would return safely home from the ends of the earth, Vietnam.
We are proud and thankful that we had Herm in our lives for 23 years. He will never by forgotten.