Thomas E. Soma

Posted on April 4, 2010

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soma2 Thomas Soma in Vietnam     Soma1Tom’s High School Graduation Picture.
>Thomas was assigned to Charlie Troop on February 7, 1967 and was Killed in Action on December 30, 1969. Thomas was an Observer on an OH-6A Observation Helicopter. Thomas was awarded the Purple Heart, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, and the Vietnam Service Medal.

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If any family member or friend reads this blog, please contact me as I am looking for pictures and personal stories about this brave man.

Tom was my brother, he like many in the mid 60′s enlisted feeling that what they were doing was for the betterment of the South Viet Nam people. He grew up in Winnebago, MN. a town of about 2200 people then. Graduated from high school in 1966 and when done with the service planned on going to vocational school for electronics. He told me of how when he arrived in Viet Nam americans were regarded as heroes, then as time went by that began to change. He told of how soldiers would change into civilian clothing when they came home for furloughs a the airport, to avoid having things thrown at them. This he refused to do as he was proud of himself and what the mission was there. He normally flew as a door gunner in the huey. He was filling in as an observer for a member that was at home in the USA on furlough when the helicopter was shot down and Tom lost his life. he as scheduled to leave Viet Nam in Feb. of 1970, only two months and he would have been able to see his home again. Larry Soma

A funny story about that those who knew Tom will enjoy.. So back in 1968 Tom was home on furlough from Viet Nam and decided him and I would build a fort in the backyard. We went to an appliance store in town and brought home an empty refrigerator box to use. We had openings to aim my bb gun out of and across the backyard was the clothesline. So Tom had good aim and showed me that if you shoot at just the open tip of the clothesline pins that they would spin around on the lines really fast. That was great fun until our dear mother seen that. Despite Tom being in his 2nd of 3 years in Viet Nam she gave him a stern lecture. That ended the game of spinning clothespins Larry Soma

Larry Soma is Tom’s younger brother. Larry sent me these two pictures. Larry says Tom loved to draw and he loved cars. He drew his car on a Tee Shirt and wore it. Tom gave the Tee Shirt to his brother and sister. The second picture is Tom wearing the Tee Shirt in the summer of 1965 just before he went to Vietnam.

Tom Soma 1</a
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