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-   -   No one died on Christmas Day in Vietnam (http://message.snopes.com/showthread.php?t=88227)

snopes 05 January 2014 09:31 PM

No one died on Christmas Day in Vietnam
 
Comment: I always heard that during the Viet Nam war, "no one dies on
Christmas Day" and death certificated were never dated December 25th. Is
this true?

Nana M 05 January 2014 09:36 PM

I thought that that was a plot from MASH. A soldier who was badly injured was kept alive until the day after Christmas by BJ and Hawkeye so that his children wouldn't have subsequent Christmases ruined by the memory of daddy dying on Christmas day. Found it; episode 199, Death takes a Holiday. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0638292/synopsis

ASL 05 January 2014 09:57 PM

Well, they didn't quite make it, but a little moral flexibility helps every now and then.

ETA: Anyways, to answer the question: false. I searched that web page for casualties by date and found several for December 25th.

Skeptic 06 January 2014 10:03 PM

On a related topic, thousands of soldiers were killed on the last day of World War 1, even though the generals knew that the armistice had been signed that morning. Many were listed as having died the day before.

overyonder 06 January 2014 10:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Skeptic (Post 1792859)
On a related topic, thousands of soldiers were killed on the last day of World War 1, even though the generals knew that the armistice had been signed that morning. Many were listed as having died the day before.

Killed in action, or from wounds in previous action?

OY

snopes 06 January 2014 10:51 PM

There were plenty who were killed in action on the last day because they were ordered to continue fighting until the armistice took effect at 11:00.

ganzfeld 06 January 2014 10:53 PM

It would be nice to have some note of the provenance of the claim of back dating. It doesn't seem to make any sense considering that some of the worst of the fighting was done that morning before the armistice took effect at 11 and many soldiers were listed as having died on the 11th so one wonders what would be gained by falsely listing their deaths as the on 10th.

snopes 06 January 2014 11:03 PM

Quote:

what would be gained by falsely listing their deaths as the on 10th.
So their families wouldn't spend the rest of their lives believing their loved one had died pointlessly fighting a war that both sides had already agreed to end.

ganzfeld 06 January 2014 11:14 PM

Seems like a fairly reasonable thing to do but what is the evidence that it actually happened?

snopes 06 January 2014 11:32 PM

I not claiming it actually happened; I was just addressing why it hypothetically would have made sense if it did happen.

firefighter_raven 07 January 2014 12:09 AM

http://www.thewall-usa.com/search.asp
Using this I came up with 52 names listed as dying on Dec. 25th

Singing in the Drizzle 07 January 2014 12:17 AM

I can see not notifying the family of solders death on Christmas or other National holidays. I also expect that it is a day or two after the death before they are notified, though with today communication technology notification is a lot quicker.


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