Edward S. Daniels

Private First Class, U.S. Army

Headquarters Company
8th Engineer Battalion
1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile)


Entered the Service from: New Jersey
Died: June 16, 1966
Buried at: 
Mount Lawn Cemetery
                  Sharon Hill, Pennsylvania

PRIVATE FIRST CLASS EDWARD STEVEN DANIELS was born to Mattie Daniels in Pennsylvania on January 16, 1943. His mother married a Warren R. after he was born.

Edward Daniels had been in the service for three years, during which time he had attained the rank of Private First Class. It appears that up until July 3, 1965 he had been serving with the 127th Engineering Battalion, Support Command, 11th Air Assault Division (Test). 

The 1st Cavalry Division had been serving in Korea, headquartered at Camp Howze until July 1, 1965. At that time the 1st Cavalry Division was redesignated the 2nd Infantry Division. The 1st Cavalry Division went home, but only long enough to be reorganized and be prepared for a new mission. On July 3, 1965, in Doughboy Stadium at Fort Benning, Georgia the colors of the 11th Air Assault Division (Test) were cased and retired. As the band played the rousing strains of Garryowen, the colors of the 1st Cavalry Division were moved onto the field. As part of the reorganization, the 127th Engineering Battalion, Support Command, 11th Air Assault Division (Test) was redesignated as the 8th Engineering Battalion, Support Command, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile).

Within 90 days of becoming the Army's first air mobile division, the First Cavalry Division was back in combat as the first fully committed division of the Vietnam War. An advance party of "C" Company, 8th Engineer Battalion, on board C-130s, arrived at Nha Trang on August 6. By August 21 the remainder of the advance party arrived. They joined with advance liaison forces and established a temporary base camp near An Khe, 36 miles inland from the coastal city of Qui Nhon. On September 12, the remainder of the battalion, on board the USNS Darby arrived at Qui Nhon.

For the 8th Engineers, Vietnam was another conflict fought in a distant underdeveloped region. With the commitment of ground troops in 1965, Engineers had the dual responsibilities of supporting combat operations and of constructing support facilities for the Army, its sister services, and allied nations.

One of the first assignments given to the 8th Engineer Battalion was the construction of a signal complex on the top of a nearby mountain. Access to the construction site was made possible by the use of CH-54, Flying Cranes to move the heavy earth moving equipment. All this was done while construction and upgrading of Camp Radcliff continued. On October 10, 1965, the 8th Engineers engaged in their first tactical operation in "Operation Shiny Bayonet", the First Cavalry Division had initiated a first brigade-size airmobile action against the enemy. The air assault task force consisted of the 1st and 2nd Battalions, 7th Cavalry, 1st Squadron, 9th Cavalry, 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry and the 1st Battalion, 21st Artillery. Rather than standing and fighting, the Viet Cong chose to disperse and slip away.

In late January 1966, the 8th Engineer Battalion launched an extensive airfield construction program which resulted in new airfields and access roads at Hammond, Plai Mrong, Oasis, Polai Kleng, Dong Tre and Plateau Gi. 

Private First Class Daniels died on June 16, 1966 as the result of lacerations and internal injuries when the vehicle he was driving hit a curb and overturned. He was survived by his wife and his mother.
He was brought back to the United States and buried at Mount Lawn Cemetery in Sharon Hill, Pennsylvania

is honored on Panel 8E Line 52 of
the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.