Joseph L. Hesson III

Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps


First Platoon
Company E
2nd Battalion
3rd Marines
3 Marine Division 

Entered the Service from: New Jersey
Died: August 10, 1969
Buried at: Arlington Cemetery
                  Cove Road
                  Pennsauken, NJ 08110
Awards: Purple Heart

PRIVATE FIRST CLASS JOSEPH LEONARD HESSON III Joseph Leonard Hesson III was born on February 22, 1949, to Joseph and Dolores Hesson. Joseph was born in Camden, before his parents moved to Pennsauken. While attending high school he was a member of the track and swimming team. He graduated from Camden County Vocational School June 1967. He had a girlfriend named Kathy Hodur that called him"carrot top".

After graduating from high school he enrolled to study electronics, at Camden College in
Blackwood, NJ. He attended college for a year before enlisting in the Marines on June 24, 1968 at the Philadelphia Recruiting Office in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 

Joseph arrived in Vietnam on December 19, 1968 where he assigned to the 1st Platoon, Echo 
Company,2nd Battalion,3rd Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division.

Private First Class Joseph L. Hesson III died as a result of multiple fragmentation wounds to the head from hostile mortar fire, at Mutters Ridge,16 kilometers north northwest of Ca Lu Airfield, Quang Tri Province, during Operation Idaho Canyon.

Joseph L. Hesson III was single and served his country for 1 year, 1 month and 17 days.  He had been in Vietnam for 7 months and 22 days. He was 20 years 5 months and 19 days old.
Joseph, an only son, was survived by his parents; Joseph L. & Dolores V. Hesson Jr, and a sister; Dolores Hesson of 2233 39th Street, Pennsauken, New Jersey.


** Note that some of these messages are from years ago
and their contact information may not be good anymore **

2 Area Marines Are Killed in Viet Combat

A 19-year-old Doylestown (PA) Marine and a 20-year-old Pennsauken, NJ, Marine were among U. S. servicemen killed earlier this week in Vietnam combat, it was announced Friday by the Defense Department. Killed were Pfc. Donald L. Elliott, son of Mr. and Mrs. James R. Elliott, Rengency Woods Apartments, Doylestown, and Pfc. Joseph L. Hesson 3d, son of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph L. Hesson Jr., 2233 39th Street, Pennsauken.


Both Marines died Sunday after they were struck by grenade and mortar fragments during fighting in the Quang Tri province near Vandergrift combat base, a spokesman for the Defense Department said. Pfc. Elliott had been in Vietnam two months. Pfc. Hesson had been there since December 1968. Parents of both Marines said Friday their sons "believed" in what they were doing there.


Pfc. Elliott, a motorcycle enthusiast, had planned to study mechanical engineering in college after his discharge. Pfc. Hesson had studied electronics at Camden County College in Blackwood, NJ, before he enlisted in June 1968. He had been hospitalized twice in Vietnam with malaria, his parents said. Pfc. Elliott joined the Marine Corps last September and celebrated his 19th birthday three days before he was killed. In addition to his parents, Elliott leaves a sister, Catherine, 21. Hesson also is survived by a sister, Delores, 18, besides his parents.

Jim McIlhenney
Marine Viet Nam Veteran
Sunday, December 15, 2002

Joseph L. Hesson III
is honored on Panel 20W Line 123 of
the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.