Richard C. Townsend

1937 - 2015

Korean WarVietnam War

Their Story

Richard Charles Townsend was born on May 20, 1937, in Silvis, Illinois, the son of Phillip Wells Townsend and Mable Taylor Townsend. His father was a locomotive inspector.1 His father died on April 3, 1958, and on July 6, 1979, his mother died.2

He entered the Army in June 1954, and completed basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.3 He was a member of the 763rd Transportation Battalion, and was a locomotive repairman with Co. D. Townsend married Maggie Sue Tanner on February 14, 1956, in Virginia. She was just 16 years of age. At the time of his marriage, he was stationed at Fort Eustis Army Base in Newport News, Virginia.4 Townsend later married Sandra L. Hargrave on September 28, 2004.

Townsend served in Germany in 1961.5 In 1967, Townsend was with the 75th Supply Company.6 Townsend served 22 years in the US Army. His service included Korea and several tours in Vietnam. Sergeant First Class Townsend was with the III Corps in the Republic of South Vietnam when he was presented with the Bronze Star in February, 1971.7

The III Corps was a Corps of the US Army that supervised the training and deployment of more than 137 units and detachments to Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War. More than 40,000 individual replacements for units in Vietnam were also trained by the III Corps.9

After retiring from the army, Townsend worked for the Rock Island Lines Railroad in Silvis, Illinois, and later the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad in Burlington, Iowa. He enjoyed gardening, hunting, fishing, and spending time with his friends.10

Richard Charles Townsend died on September 4, 2015, at the Marigold Rehab and Health Care Center in Galesburg, Illinois. He was survived by three daughters, Ariane Lehr, Bianca Forbes, and Melinda Townsend; two sons, Richard A. Townsend, and Michael Townsend; and five sisters; Mary Kissell, Darlene Word, Shirley Roberts, Pat Pence, and Irene Bachman.11


1 1950 United States Federal Census –

2 Richard Charles Townsend – Facts (

3 30 Dec 1955, 16 – The Dispatch at

4 – Virginia, U.S., Marriage Records, 1936-2014.

5 23 Dec 1961, 14 – The Rock Island Argus at

6 22 Nov 1967, 4 – The Dispatch at

7 Vietnam War, Awards and Decorations of Honor, 1965-1972 –

8 III Corps – Army of the Republic of Vietnam (ARVN) (

9 III Corps (United States) – Wikipedia.

10 Obituary for Richard Charles Townsend, 1937-2015 (Aged 78) –

11 Obituary for Richard Charles Townsend, 1937-2015 (Aged 78) –