Name: Robert Nicholas Vennik
Rank/Branch: E6/US Army
Unit: Troop B, 1st Squadron, 1st Cavalry, 196th Brigade, 23rd Infantry Division
Date of Birth: 19 January 1946 (Midland Park NJ)
Home City of Record: Wyckoff NJ
Date of Loss: 26 August 1971
Country of Loss: South Vietnam
Loss Coordinates: 154959N 1080918E (AT949521)
Status (in 1973): Killed/Body Not Recovered
Other Personnel in Incident: (none missing)
On August 26, 1971, SSgt. Robert N. Vennik was riding atop an armored personnel carrier (APC #B-24), moving to a night defensive position near the village of Cu An, 23 miles southwest of Hoa An in Quang Nam Province, South Vietnam.
Vennik's unit was ambushed, and after his APC was moved into a position to provide fire support for other carriers, his track was hit by a rocket propelled grenade, causing a violent explosion from the fragmentation and white phosphorous grenades, the Claymore mines and the gas tanks of the APC.
Of the six men who were riding on top of the vehicle, five remains were found and identified, but the remains of Vennik were never found. The area was searched for two days. Witnesses felt that Vennik's body had been destroyed in the explosion and ensuing 11 hour fire on the APC.
Vennik is one of nearly 2500 Americans still missing from the Vietnam war. Like Vennik, some certainly died. However, since the end of the war, thousands of reports have been received that indicate that hundreds of Americans are still alive, held captive in Southeast Asia.