A Four Year Journey Has Been Completed

A photo journal of the "Purple Fox" plaque and monument
that now resides in the Semper Fidelis Memorial Park

(Photo Provided by Dave Powell )
The Iwo Jima spire of the National Museum of the Marine Corps is a 
perfect backdrop for the Purple Fox and Warriors of Hill 881S monument

The Concept

When the Vietnam era Marines of Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 364,
otherwise known as the world famous Purple Foxes, learned that plans for the
National Museum of the Marine Corps included a park like setting to display
items recognizing units which had materially fomented the glorious history of
the United States Marine Corps, they decided to honor those Marines and Navy
Corpsmen who made the supreme sacrifice while bearing the title of Purple Fox.

A plaque was decided upon and a search for a bronze sculptor was initiated who
could render the UH-34, CH-46 and the mascot character known as Swifty onto
the plaque.  It so happened that a Purple Fox active duty pilot at Marine Corps
Air Station, Camp Pendleton, Ca., had a brother who was a sculptor as well as a
Marine Reservists.  Cpl. Cliff F. Dupill, USMCR of Delmont, Pa. was selected as
the sculptor and tasked with completing the plaque in time for the scheduled July
2004 reunion in Reno, Nv.  Cliff completed the project and delivered it to Reno
for the first viewing by the Purple Foxes in attendance and a formal dedication.

(Photo Provided by Dave Powell )
By the time the plaque was commissioned, five additional Purple Foxes had been
lost during the first segment of Operation Iraqi Freedom.  Their names were 
included on the plaque.  A temporary place for the plaque was required since the
National Museum of the Marine Corps and the Semper Fidelis Memorial Park had
not been completed.

Temporary Home For The Plaque

A contingent of active duty Purple Foxes were in attendance at the Reno reunion as 
the crews of two CH-46s flown in as static displays.  The squadron agreed to take
possession of the plaque until such future date it might be delivered to the museum.

The plaque is now in the capable hands of the Purple Fox crew.

The crew chief secured the plaque for the flight to California.

Early March 2007, the squadron lost another crew while engaged in their third tour of
duty supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.  The plaque was transferred to Kentucky to
incorporate it into a dual monument.  Semper Fidelis Memorial Park design lacked wall
space to attach plaques.  Ongoing relationship with a group of Marines known as the 
Warriors of Hill 881S resulted in another bronze plaque being produced in recognition
of those Marines and Navy Corpsmen who defended Hill 881S and lost their lives in
the Republic of Vietnam.  This plaque was dedicated in November 2006.

The 4,000 lb. monument being placed by Orwick Monument and Klein Monument.

(Photo Provided by Dave Powell )

(Photo Provided by Dave Powell )
Representing the Marine Air/Ground Team are, 1stLt. Steve
"Herbie" Erb and Capt. William H. "India Six Actual" Dabney.

(Photo Provided by Dave Powell )
The Hill 881S plaque on the opposite side of the monument.

(Photo Provided by Dave Powell )

Our monuments final resting place is in a shadded area along the path of bricks