National VHPA Site
- Neal Beard (61), a member of the VHPA
suddenly on April 15, 2009 in Vancouver, Washington. His passing is a great
loss to friends and family.
Neal was born December 31, 1947 at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio,
the son of Harley E. Beard and Berniece S. Menze. He was baptized into the
Christian faith at Trinity Lutheran Church in Lincoln, Nebraska. He moved
to Bellevue with his family in 1957. He was confirmed in his faith in 1962
at Pilgrim Lutheran Church in Bellevue. Neal was a member of the Boy Scouts
and an active participant in the Explorer Scout Search and Rescue program.
He graduated from Sammamish High School in 1966 and attended Bellevue
Community College before enlisting in the United States Army July 24, 1967.
Neal earned his rotary pilotís wings and was commissioned a Warrant Officer
on April 26, 1968. During his Army service, Neal had two combat tours as a
helicopter pilot in Vietnam, serving with the 176th Aviation
Company with the Americal Division, F Troop (Air) of the 4th
Cavalry, HHC 2nd Brigade of the 101st Airborne
Division (Airmobile) and the 120th Assault Helicopter Company.
He was decorated for heroism with the Distinguished Flying Cross and the
Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Silver Star. He was also awarded the
Bronze Star and 16 Air Medals. Following his separation from active
service, Neal flew helicopters in the Army Reserve with the 92nd
Neal returned to Seattle in 1973 and settled in Kirkland and then Bellevue.
He worked for Bethlehem Steel before becoming a letter carrier for the U. S.
Postal Service on Mercer Island, retiring in 1992. He later worked for the
Icom Company in Bellevue and for Werner Trucking as a truck driver, moving
to Kettle Falls, returning to Bellevue in 2004. He moved to Vancouver to
work for Key Trucking. He was an avid online gamer, participated in Civil
War reenactments and loved to ride his Harley Davidson motorcycle.
- We sadly note the passing of our brother Ed Freeman, Medal of
Honor winner, a great American and treasured friend. Freeman, who lived in
Boise, died at about 8:30 a.m. Wednesday August 20th from complications from
Parkinson's disease, a family member said. He was 80 years old.
was a Vietnam veteran who was honored for his heroic services.
piloted a helicopter and saved more than 30 men during the war. His heroics grew
nationwide attention when his character was featured in Mel Gibson's war movie,
"We Were Soldiers." Actor Mark McCracken played the character of Ed "Too Tall"
Freeman in the popular film.
The family released this statement:
"Our family is grateful for all the wonderful wishes we've received these past
few weeks, from our friends and from those we don't even know. The support of
the people of Idaho has been overwhelming, and my father really appreciated
those kind words and wishes."
"He had visits from Governor Otter, Secretary of the Interior Kempthorne and
Major General Lafrenz of the Idaho National Guard. Many others either came to
see him or passed on their kind words to us."
"My father touched a lot of people over the years during his career in the U.S.
Army and as a civilian pilot with the federal government at the National
Interagency Fire Center. People could relate to him, and those who knew him have
told me they thought of him as a wonderful, friendly, humorous person with a lot
"He made an impression on people. I knew him not only as my father, but as my
best friend. We spent many hours together, fishing and just hanging out with
each other. My family and I will miss him more than words can express."
Freeman's was buried at Idaho State Veterans Cemetery.
- We sadly report that Richard (Dick) E. Glasgow lost his battle with lung
that he had been fighting for the past 5 years. He passed away at home with
his family by his side. Services will be held Monday February 26th at the
Woodland Funeral Home, 5930 Mullen Road SE, Lasey Washington, phone (360)
491-3000. Viewing will be from 1300 to 1500 hrs. Military
service to start at 1500 hrs.
He will be missed.