Where Is Henry Burch Really From?

Updated: Oct 18, 2020


The Henderson Historical Society and local town Historian had been contacted regarding obtaining further information about Henry Burch from a local newspaper. The newspaper was wanting to do an article on the Vietnam Veterans from Jefferson County. Henry Burch has been listed in various publications that his hometown is Henderson, NY at the time he joined the Army. The society held no information and could not find any evidence that Henry Burch had a connection to Henderson, NY.

U.S., Vietnam War Military Casualties, 1956-1998

SP4 Henry Burch is listed in several documents and publications as KIA during his time served in the Army during the Vietnam War. Several documents listing information about his military tour showed his hometown as Henderson, NY. One of these documents included U.S. Vietnam War Military Casualties, 1956-1998.[1] Burch was assigned to A Co., 28th Inf Reg, 2nd Bn at the time of his death. His MOS is listed as Light Weapon Infantry. He served from January 24th, 1966 to June 11th, 1966. In the online database of The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall website[2], he is listed as being from Henderson, NY also.

Find A Grave Website Memorial Page

Henry Burch’s place of burial was located on FindAGrave.com.[3] Burch was buried in Paradise Memorial Park in Richmond Heights, Miami-Dade County, Florida. Information was posted on the memorial page that he was the son of Rosa Green Adams, Homestead, FL, and Henry J Burch. This brought further confusion about how Henry was connected to Henderson.

When the case came into my hands, I began running searches on various genealogy websites to see if I could build a connection of Henry Burch to Henderson. All the searches kept coming up with nothing. The only information I was able to come up with were military database sources on Ancestry.com and Fold3. No other information came up linking Burch to the area of Henderson.

My search brought me to the Virtual Vietnam Memorial Wall to see if I could find any evidence that could help. Through reviewing messages that had been left on SP4 Henry Burch’s Memorial page on the site I came across a post that offered some hope. Ronald Howard had posted a message on November 7, 2014. In the message, it stated that Howard was a cousin and the address of him was listed as Homestead, Florida. This was the same place that Burch had been buried, so I had a feeling that I had a great lead. Howard’s message states, “Bless Who Gives His Life For His Country. Henry, you are surely missed from your family in Miami.” Since the posting had an email address for Ronald Howard I decided to try and email him.

I received a reply from Ronald Howard asking me to reach out to him by phone. I called and we spoke about Henry. He remembered his cousins and had even lived his Henry’s mom for a time. Henry had been an only child of Rosa Adams. Howard explained that Henry had come up to New York with his uncle to try and start a business. So, we figured that is how his cousins were linked up to Henderson, NY.

After my conversation with Howard, the society’s felt more confident that the record of Burch’s hometown could be correct. Burch’s military records were ordered from the National Archives and Records. We figured that if we could get a copy of his records it will show where Burch was living when he joined the Army.

The Selective Service packet of information for Burch actually provided proof that all the online databases and publications are incorrect. A copy of his Selective Service System, Registration Card contained information that proved that Henry Burch’s hometown was not Henderson, but instead Irving, NY. He listed on the card that he was in the care of Oscar Henderson, which was most likely the Uncle he had come to New York with. This is where the transcriber of the records read information incorrectly. The form also showed he attended Lakeshore Central High. The school is not near Henderson, NY at all. It is in Irving and his place of employment at Beach Rd, Angola is also near his hometown of Irving.

Due to Henry Burch’s registration card, I’m confident that SP4 Henry Burch has no connection to Henderson, NY. The information about Burch listed on several documents, publications, and online databases is incorrect when it states that he is from Henderson, NY. It should be listed as Irving, NY.

Vietnam Registration Card of Henry Burch

I know for myself as a military widow that I would want the correct information about my husband published. Therefore, I felt the need to help honor SP4 Henry Burch by trying to get this information corrected. I filled out a form Application For Correction of Military Records Under The Provisions of Title 10, U.S. Code, Section 1552 to request that this information is reviewed by the military and corrected in honor of making sure that correct information about Henry Burch is published from this time forward.

At the time of posting this, I haven’t heard back about the request for information correction.


[1] Ancestry.com. U.S., Vietnam War Military Casualties, 1956-1998 [database on-line]. Provo, Utah, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2005.

[2] ___. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Henry Burch, thewall-usa.com [database on-line].

[3] ___. Henry Burch, findagrave.com [database on-line].