Sergeant First Class Roque Perpetua Jr. killed in the Vietnam War

This Island History was written to honor Army Sergeant First Class Roque Perpetua Jr., who was born on Kaua‘i and raised at Grove Farm Plantation, and the other 12 servicemen from Kaua‘i who were killed in Vietnam.

Perpetua (1934-1966) was killed in action on Saturday, Dec. 17, 1966, while on a search-and-destroy mission with his unit: D Company, 1st Battalion, 2nd Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division.

On Nov. 21, 1966, less than a month before his death, he was awarded two Bronze Star medals at An Khe, Vietnam, one for heroism under fire on April 2, 1966 as mortar platoon sergeant for D Company, and the other for meritorious service to his battalion.

His Bronze Star with “V” Device for valor citation reads: “When his platoon came under sudden, heavy Viet Cong attack, the veteran professional soldier raced through the intense V. C. barrage and set up his mortars to get maximum effective fire on the enemy.

“He was quickly joined by the rest of the platoon and they laid down such an effective barrage that the insurgents were forced from their intrenched positions.

“Sergeant Perpetua, who was directing the platoon, refused to give the enemy respite, and continued to track them down.”

His other decorations included the Purple Heart Medal, Combat Infantry Badge, Senior Parachutist Badge, Vietnam Service Medal and National Defense Service Medal.

Burial with military honors was at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific on O‘ahu on Dec. 29, 1966.

The Army listed survivors as his father, Roque Perpetua of Puhi, mother, Mrs. Josephine D. Munar of Los Angeles, and two children, Ramona P. and Renee Perpetua.

Other Kaua‘i servicemen killed in the Vietnam War are: Clyde J. Caires, Francisco Concepcion, Jr., Gaylord Kila Defries, Gary Noboru Kawamura, Allen Lanui Lewis, Rodney Wayne Pavao, Thomas Anthony Salvatore, Miles T. Tanimoto, Stanley Kamaki Woodward, Hilario Leanio Jr., Francis Louis Souza and John Levinthol, Jr.

Former Marine Sgt. Hank Soboleski is a Vietnam War veteran.

2 Comments
  1. KAUAI_ARMY_RANGER March 22, 2020 7:09 am Reply

    Need to make a correction to this NCO’s unit. 1-12 CAV, not 1-2 CAV. Verified on 1966 1st CAV MTOE (1-2 CAV incorrect.) 1-12 CAV appropriate. See below- message

      

    THE WALL OF FACES

    ROQUE PERPETUA JR

    HONORED ON PANEL 13E, LINE 55 OF THE WALL

    ROQUE PERPETUA JR

    WALL NAME

    ROQUE PERPETUA JR

    PANEL / LINE

    13E/55

    DATE OF BIRTH

    12/22/1934

    CASUALTY PROVINCE

    PR & MR UNKNOWN

    DATE OF CASUALTY

    12/17/1966

    HOME OF RECORD

    KAUAI

    COUNTY OF RECORD

    Kauai County

    STATE

    HI

    BRANCH OF SERVICE

    ARMY

    RANK

    PSGT

    LEFT FOR ROQUE PERPETUA JR

    POSTED ON 12.22.2017

    POSTED BY: DENNIS WRISTON

    I’M PROUD OF OUR VIETNAM VETERANS

    Sergeant First Class Roque Perpetua Jr., Served with Company D, 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division.

    READ MORE

    POSTED ON 12.17.2016

    POSTED BY: A GRATEFUL VIETNAM VETERAN

    SILVER STAR CITATION

    Roque Perpetua , Jr. 
    Date of birth: 22-Dec-34 
    Date of death: December 17, 1966 
    Home of record: Kauai Hawaii 
    Status: KIA 

    AWARDS AND CITATIONS 

    Silver Star 

    Awarded for actions during the Vietnam War 

    The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 8, 1918 (amended by act of July 25, 1963), takes pride in presenting the Silver Star (Posthumously) to Platoon Sergeant Roque Perpetua, Jr. (ASN: RA-10106904), United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action. Platoon Sergeant Perpetua distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous action on 17 December 1966, while serving as a platoon sergeant with Company D, 1st Battalion (Airborne), 12th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, during an air assault operation in the Republic of Vietnam. Moments after landing in an area of enemy operations, Sergeant Perpetua’s company began receiving sporadic hostile fire. Deploying his men on line, Sergeant Perpetua led the right flank of one platoon forward through a series of hedgerows toward the enemy positions. With bullets striking all around him, he moved up and down the lines encouraging his men and leading them through the intensifying hostile fire. As other elements became pinned down, Sergeant Perpetua continued leading his men forward until they were engaging the numerically superior force at a distance of less than thirty meters. Realizing at this point that the North Vietnamese force was much larger than originally suspected, Sergeant Perpetua endeavored to free his men from their tenuous position. Crawling up and down his lines through the intense enemy fire, Sergeant Perpetua located the key bunker to the enemy’s defensive network. Then, with complete disregard for his own safety, he stood up in the fire-swept field and advanced on the bunker, firing his rifle. Although startled by his aggressive action, the well entrenched enemy quickly recovered and began engaging the valiant sergeant with numerous automatic weapons. Even after he had been wounded, Sergeant Perpetua continued his one-man assault on the enemy position. He drove to within five meters of the bunker before falling mortally wounded. Sergeant Perpetua’s gallant action is in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service, and reflects great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army. 

    General Orders: Headquarters, 1st Cavalry Division, General Orders No. 381 (January 28, 1967) 

    Action Date: 17-Dec-66 

    Service: Army 

    Rank: Platoon Sergeant 

    Company: Company D 

    Battalion: 1st Battalion 

    Regiment: 12th Cavalry Regiment

    READ LESS

    POSTED ON 11.13.2013

    POSTED BY: CURT CARTER CCARTER02@EARTHLINK.NET

    REMEMBERING AN AMERICAN HERO

    Dear PSGT Roque Perpetua Jr, sir 

    As an American, I would like to thank you for your service and for your sacrifice made on behalf of our wonderful country. The youth of today could gain much by learning of heroes such as yourself, men and women whose courage and heart can never be questioned. 

    May God allow you to read this, and may He allow me to someday shake your hand when I get to Heaven to personally thank you. May he also allow my father to find you and shake your hand now to say thank you; for America, and for those who love you. 

    With respect, and the best salute a civilian can muster for you, Sir 

    Curt Carter 

    READ MORE

    POSTED ON 11.14.2012

    PHOTO

    Wilkens, SSG Perpetua, Anderson

    SSG Perpetua was KIA Dec 17 1966 and was awarded the Silver Star for his actions.

    Rest in peace with the warriors.

    READ

    Rest in peace with the warriors.

    Credit-
    https://www.vvmf.org/Wall-of-Faces/40261/ROQUE-PERPETUA-JR/


    1. KAUA'I_ARMY_RANGER March 22, 2020 7:15 am Reply

      Also above is his Silver Star Citation. -Airborne!


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, send us an email.