McGrath, Paul

McGrath, Paul

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Date of Birth: 5 Aug 1944
Died On: 7 Jun 1968 (aged 23) Quảng Trị, Vietnam
Street Address: Park Drive North
Service Number: 0103672
Branch of Service: U.S. Marine Corps - Co A, 1st Bn. 26th Mar, 3d Mar Div (REIN) FMF.

Veteran Code: VIET-123

Paul Martin McGrath

Paul M. McGrath was born August 5, 1944 the son of Hugh and Marion Hogan McGrath. He had three brothers John, Hugh and Richard along with three sisters Eileen, Mary Elizabeth and Julianne. The family were members of the Church of the Resurrection and lived on Park Drive North. Paul attended Holy Family School in New Rochelle and was a graduate of Canterbury School, New Milford , CT, 1962, and received a BA from Villanova University in 1966.

Paul enlisted in the U.S. Marines shortly after his graduation on August 22, 1966. He was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps in June 1967 after completing Officer's Candidate Course, at Marine Corps Schools, Quantico, Va. He had been selected from the enlisted ranks of the Marine Corps and underwent a ten-week course which covered three major areas: leadership, physical fitness, and academics.


Paul began his tour on December 9, 1967. and had the rank of Second Lieutenant. His military occupation or specialty was Infantry Officer. Service number assignment was 0103672. Attached to 5th Marine Division, 1st Battalion, 26th Marine Regiment, A Company.

From 21 January 1968 the 26th Marines were under siege at Khe Sanh until the conclusion of Operation Pegasus on 14 April 1968 and were replaced by the 1st Marines on 15 April 1968.  The 26th Marines were awarded a Presidential Unit Citation for their actions during the Battle of Khe Sanh as were the Seabees that supported them.

Paul McGrath's 1st Battalion, 26th Marines participated in below operation during his tour of duty.

The 1st and 3rd Battalions, 26th Marines participated in Operation Mameluke Thrust from May–June 1968.

The 1st Battalion, 26th Marines participated in Operation Allen Brook from 26 May to 6 June 1968.

On 5 June, as the Marine Battalions moved west along the island they were ambushed by a PAVN force at the hamlet of Cu Ban, due to the proximity of the enemy forces supporting fire was ineffective and a confused close-quarters battle raged throughout the day until tanks allowed the Marines to overrun the enemy positions. Marines losses were seven killed and 55 wounded * while PAVN losses were 30 killed.

On 6 June, 1st Battalion, 26th Marines (1/26) Marines was withdrawn from the operation.

During his service in the Vietnam War, Marine Corps Second Lieutenant McGrath experienced a traumatic event which ultimately resulted in loss of life on June 7, 1968. Recorded circumstances attributed to: Died through hostile action, small arms fire. Incident location: South Vietnam, Quang Nam province.*

On or before June 7, 1968 while leading his men Paul was killed by Small Arms Fire in Province: Military Region 1 - Quang Nam. His body was recovered by his men and sent home.

* Paul was possibly wounded on June 5th or 6th and died of his wounds on June 7th.

“Funeral services for Lt Paul M McGrath United State Marine Corps who was killed in action with the Third Marine Division Vietnam June 7, 1968 were held at The Church of Resurrection in Rye. He was the 23-year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. Hugh McGrath Park Drive North. The body was returned to the family yesterday. A Requiem Mass will be offered at the church tomorrow at 10 am. The celebrant will be the Rev Patrick Moore a close friend of the family. Lt McGrath received a BA degree at Villanova University In 1966 and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps in June 1967”

The Daily Item
Port Chester, New York
17 Jun 1968, Mon • Page 13

Paul was buried in Gates of Heaven cemetery in Hawthorne NY. At the time of his death, in addition to his parents and grandmother he was survived by three sisters Mrs Eileen Baynes of Saddle River NJ, Mrs Mary Elizabeth Hutchoe of Lake Mahopac, NY, and Miss Julia Ann of the home address, three hrothras John W McGrath 3rd of New York, Dr Hugh McGrath of Washington DC and Richard A McGrath of Springfield NJ

Lt Paul M McGrath is honored on the Vietnam Veteran's Memorial in Washington DC. Name inscribed at VVM Wall, Panel 59w, Line 26.


★ Purple Heart
★ Combat Action Ribbon
★ Marksmanship Badge
★ National Defense Service Medal
★ Vietnam Campaign Medal
★ Vietnam Service Medal
★ Marine Corps Presidential Unit Citation
★ Vietnam Gallantry Cross
★ Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal
★ Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal


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