First Lieutenant Daniel R. Dye was a native of East Providence, Rhode Island and a 1962 graduate of East Providence High School. He was a 1966 graduate of the University of Rhode Island, earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration. He participated in the Army ROTC program during his freshman and sophomore years. After graduating from URI, Daniel enlisted in the Army and completed his Basic Training at Fort Dix, New Jersey. As a result of his superior performance of duty, Daniel was selected for Officer Candidate School (OCS). He graduated from OCS at Fort Benning, GA in June 1967 and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant of Infantry.
In his initial assignment at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, Second Lieutenant Dye trained Infantry soldiers preparing for their deployment to Vietnam. Even at this early stage of his career, Second Lieutenant Dye was recognized by his superiors for his outstanding supervision of training, insuring that only the highest quality of training and instruction was being conducted. His initiative, drive and enthusiasm set an example for other officers to emulate.
On 12 June 1968, First Lieutenant Dye arrived in the Republic of Vietnam and was assigned to Advisor Group 89, Military Assistance Command as an Infantry Advisor in Phuoc Tuy Province, South Vietnam. He quickly won the confidence of the South Vietnamese leaders and soldiers. His knowledge and expertise in Infantry tactics allowed his unit to enhance significantly their operational effectiveness and combat readiness. First Lieutenant Dye always accompanied his unit on combat missions and directed their actions from the front. His personal courage was an inspiration to all the soldiers in the unit.
In October of that year, he and another US Army advisor maneuvered with elements of the South Vietnamese army forces against a well-entrenched Viet Cong force. Lieutenant Dye’s element was suddenly subjected to an intense barrage of enemy automatic weapons and rocket fire. As they engaged the enemy, it became apparent that Lieutenant Dye’s unit was vastly outnumbered by the enemy force.
Lieutenant Dye was at the head of the friendly unit and immediately reacted to the enemy by maneuvering forces and directing friendly fires. He fearlessly exposed himself to enemy fire as he traversed the fire-swept terrain, exhorting the Vietnamese soldiers to vigorously engage the enemy. Dauntless in the face of the imminent danger, Lieutenant Dye remained in his position, directing friendly fires, and encouraging the Vietnamese soldiers until he was mortally wounded. First Lieutenant Daniel D. Dye was pronounced “Killed in Action” on 12 October 1968.
For gallantry in action, First Lieutenant Daniel Dye was posthumously awarded the Combat Infantry Badge, Silver Star, Purple Heart, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal and the Vietnam Campaign Ribbon. First Lieutenant Dye’s conspicuous gallantry in action was in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Army and reflected great credit upon himself, his family, and the University of Rhode Island.
First Lieutenant Daniel R. Dye was buried with full military honors on 25 October 1968 at the Pocasset Cemetery in Cranston, Rhode Island; and his name was engraved on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial (Panel W41, Line 51 ) in Washington, DC.