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



In Memory of U.S. Army Specialist Fourth Class 

Richard Fredrick Rennolet

Aberdeen, South Dakota, Brown County

 May 12, 1949 April 14, 1968

Died of Injuries in Vietnam

Richard Fredrick Rennolet and his twin, Charles, were born in Aberdeen, South Dakota on May 12, 1949, to Robert A. and Irene G. Rennolet. Richard had two other brothers, Robert, Jr., and Paul. He attended school in both Aberdeen and Warner and then attended Aberdeen Central High School. He was a member of the First Methodist Church, the YMCA and the Ring Neck Motorcycle Club. He was interested in music, according to his brother, Robert.

Richard Rennolet volunteered for the army when he was 17, so he got his GED in the service. He was trained at Ft. Leonard Wood in Missouri; he was also trained at Fort Benning in Georgia, and Fort Ord in California. He was part of Operation Red Devil in the Canal Zone, Panama; it was one of the biggest parachute assault exercises ever held in the Canal Zone. Then on July 23, 1967, he was sent overseas to Vietnam. SP/4 Richard Fredrick Rennolet was in the Army Special Forces Division, the 51st Reconnaissance.

Specialist Fourth Class Richard Rennolet died in Vietnam “from burns received throwing a white phosphorus grenade that someone dropped in the barracks.” His body was returned to America and buried with military honors at the Riverside Cemetery in Aberdeen.

Richard Rennolet was awarded the Bronze Star for Heroism, National Defense Service Medal, Good Conduct Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Ribbon, Combat Infantryman Badge, Parachutist Badge, and Expert Badge with Machine Gun Bar, and Sharp Shooter Badge with Rifle Bar.

The fallowing is the citation for SP/4 Rennolet’s bronze star:

Richards’s current survivors include his brothers, Robert, Charles, and Paul Rennolet. As hi brother, Robert, said in the closing: “He was a young man who enjoyed living. Who know what would have happened?”

This entry was respectfully submitted by Kirk Summers, 8th grade, Spearfish Middle School, Spearfish South Dakota, on October 3, 2005. Information for this entry was provided by Robert A. Rennolet, Menno, and newspaper clippings, among them the Aberdeen American News, 4/26/68and 4/30/68/ issues, an application for a Vietnam veterans bonus, and Robert Rennolet, Menno, brother. Profile approved by Robert Rennolet.


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