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LCpl Dennis SENZ USMC History

LCpl Dennis SENZ USMC - MonroeCoWI
[Click here for journal article]

Lance Corporal Dennis L. Senz, a Marine, was the first soldier from Tomah to die in the Vietnam War. This information was found while searching for editorials that my Great Grandfather wrote. The last name made me stop in my tracks, so I copied it off. When I got home and figured out his Paternal lineage I found that I was related to him by marriage (his Grandfather Ernest Senz brother, John Senz Jr. (his Granduncle), was the husband of my Great GrandAunt Ella Faulkner.

I later contacted St. Marys Church in Tomah, and based on the fact that he was listed as being Catholic in the Article, and from Tomah, I found that he was indeed buried in St. Marys Catholic Cemetery on the South End of Tomah. At first the secretary was a bit defensive, but when I told of my connection she talked a bit abit about him. It sounded like she still felt the loss.

My family has been blessed in that we have never in the Revolutionary, Civil, WWI & WWII lost any blood relatives even though many family members served. When I saw the name Senz, I just knew that this young man who gave it all, just had to be linked somehow.

His father has passed away, but his mother still lives in the family house on Madison St. in Tomah.

From the Thursday, December 21, 1967 issue of the Tomah Journal-Monitor Herald;

"CITY OF TOMAH MOURNS ITS FIRST VIETNAM WAR DEATH, DENNIS SENZ, 19, KILLED MONDAY."

The city of Tomah mourns the death of its first hometown boy to be killed in the Vietnam War. Marine Lance Cpl. Dennis L. Senz, a Marine for only eight months, was killed by enemy gunfire on Monday. He died near Quang Nam, Vietnam. His parents, Mr. and Mrs. Leon Senz, 509 Madison St., Tomah, were notified of their son's death last Tuesday afternoon by two Marine Corps representatives.

Young Senz, only 19-years-old, entered the Marine Corps in April of this year. After basic training at Camp Pendleton, Calif., he was shipped to Vietnam in September.

Senz was a star athlete at Tomah High School and was the recipient of the Class of 1966 "Outstanding Athlete" award. He was a three-year letterman on Coach D. C. Dade's Indian baseball team, and lettered for two years as an end on Coach Dave Spies' football squad. He also was a hockey player for the Tomah Recreation Department earlier this year before enlisting in the Marines. He played goalee for Mose Lamb's Recreation Hockey squad. In January he was pictured in the Tomah Monitor-Herald and several state daily papers in his hockey regalia in a feature on Tomah hockey.

He was born in Chicago, Ill., Feb. 4, 1948, and lived in Tomah for 10 years. He attended St. Mary's Catholic elementary school and Tomah High school.

The Marine's body will be sent from Vietnam within two weeks. The Ninneman Funeral Home, Tomah, will announce funeral arrangements.

He is survived by his parents; a younger brother, Scott, at home; his paternal grandmother, Mrs. Anna Senz of Tomah; and his Maternal Grandmother, Mrs. Sophia Nosalih of Chicago.

This information has been been graciously provided by [James Wallace]. You can email him by clicking on his name.

We would like to recognize and acknowledge James Wallace for his dedication to researching MonroeCoWI and making his research available to others FREE of cost. Thank you James ...

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