Memories from Jerome Spelhaug:

When I think of Irvin a few events come to mind. Like the time he was followed by two NVA soldiers, so he went off trail and set a Claymore, blew it, and later said that he had missed. We could never figure out how you could miss with a Claymore. Then there was the time we had to cross a fast-moving, monsoon-fed river and were carried downstream. Irvin refused to cross because he couldn’t swim. Someone had to wade across to meet him half-way. And of course, there was the time he shot a tiger and forgot to mention it to Jane for 30+ years. In my world he will be remembered as a true friend and one of my heroes.

Memories from Marc Gimbel:

What I remember most about Irvin was his willingness to help me in so many ways.  I was beyond green when I first showed up at LZ Oasis but Irvin helped me pack my first rucksack, removed what I didn’t need and was the first to tell me to open the backs of the claymore mine I was checking out.  Why?  He told me that some of the LRRPS removed chunks of C-4 and used them to heat up their water for the LRRP rations.  Good stuff to know.

Memories from Gary Shellenbarger:

I can remember when Mariano came to the Company and we were sent up to An Khe. Mariano was the team leader and Reimer was the assistant team leader. They were sent on a road patrol to watch for the NVA sneaking up and blowing the road up. While they were on the mission, they decided that they would split the team, leaving the other two members while Rheimer and Mariano would go on a little scouting mission where they could get a good look at the field leading to the road. While they were standing looking across the field, suddenly, their eyes fell upon a tiger, and it was stocking them in a low crouch. Mariano called in and asked what he should do about that. Some genius said throw frag at it and see if you can scare it off. Mariano asked if Rheimer would throw the fragmentation grenade at the tiger and he would stand ready with his rifle covering Reimer got ready and threw the frag at the tiger when it left his fingertips. The tiger charged. Mariano’s rifle fired one shot and jammed. Reimer quickly mounted his rifle, flipped it on auto and pulled the trigger just as the tiger began his spring at the two soldiers. The quick burst from the M-16 emptied on the tiger, the tiger hit the ground, with its paw, stretched out toward the soldiers, and Reimer stood there, shaking his empty rifle at the tiger. After the two guys regained their composure, they cut the paws off the tiger and brought them in for everybody to see. After that, I referred to them as the tiger killers.  I got this story from them after they came in.

As Reported in the Ivy Leaf: