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Army Sgt. / Sp/5 - Pay grade E4 Posthumous Promotion
Killed in action November 9, 1970 by ground casualty gun, small arms fire hostile, died in Bien Hoa South Vietnam. The body was recovered. Home of record was LA PORTE, IN. Born July 30, 1949 age at death 21. A Caucasian Male, Single. Religious affiliation Roman Catholic.
* CAACF Record Number : 317480858
More information on November 9th, 1970
Fran Harter was born and raised in Laporte, Indiana. I was from Chicago so Fran and I quickly became good friends since we both could relate to a lot of things. The picture above is a very special one to me. When it was taken, little did I know that 3 hours later he would get killed. Fran is the red head kneeling down petting the puppy. He had traded a carton of cigarettes for the puppy earlier that afternoon. A few hours later the rest of the squad had headed out to an ambush location with 5 Arvn soldiers. On the way there they walked into an ambush. (which we believe was set up by the 2 Arvn's walking point since we never found them, believing that they went over to the other side). Also killed that night was Randall Lee Ellis and Ronald J. Di Bartolomeo who lived for 2 days after the ambush. Randy and Fran Died on Nov. 9, 1970, Ron died on the 11th. We were all in Co. B 1/5th Mech, 25th Infantry Div. November 9th 1970 was without a doubt the very worst day of my life and these three great people are to this day my hero's. I will remember them always!
Thank You, Randy Kethcart
He was born July 30, 1949 in Warsaw, Indiana to Roy and Rita (Rezabek) Harter. They moved to La Porte when he was about 3, and lived at 1608 Hillcrest Street. He attended St. Joseph's (Catholic) Elementary School on 1st Street, attended "Our Lady of the Lakes" Seminary at Wawasee, Indiana, and graduated from La Porte High School in '67. Up to September of 1969 when he enlisted, Francis was attending Tri-State college in Angola, Indiana. His sister died before him, so Francis was the only child left in the family.
According to an Army release of 11-13-70, Sp4 Francis "Dynamite" Harter, U.S. 25th Division, was one of two soldiers killed south of Saigon that day in an attack.
La Porte, IN