20 Deadliest U.S. Battles of the Vietnam War, 1965 – 1973

BattleDeathsDates
   
Ia  Drang Valley* 300Oct 23 – Nov 26, 1965
   
Khe Sanh205Jan 20 – Apr 14, 1968
   
Dak To**192Nov 1 – Dec 1, 1967
   
Cu Nghi 121Jan 28 – 31, 1966
   
Hue119Feb 2 – Mar 2, 1968
Kim Son Valley107Feb 16 – 28, 1966
   
Con Thien84Jul 2, 1967
   
Nine Days in May79May 18 – 28, 1967
   
Dak To76June 22, 1967
   
Firebase Ripcord***75July 1 – 23, 1970
Vin Huy73May 30 – Jun 2, 1967
   
Ong Thang70+Oct 17, 1967
   
Hamburger Hill (Ap Bia)70May 10 – 20, 1969
   
Dong Ha68Apr 29 – May 4, 1968
   
Tam Quan58Dec 6 – 20, 1967
LZ Bird58Dec 27, 1966
   
Dong Son54Sept 4, 1967
   
Con Thien51July 2 – 3, 1967
   
Thom Tham Khe48Dec 27 – 28, 1967
   
Tan Son Nhut AB48Mar 2, 1968
   

* LZ Albany alone claimed 155 KIA on Nov 17, making it the single deadliest U.S. action of the war. LZ X-Ray resulted in another 79 KIA over two  days, Nov 14 – 16.

** 158 of the KIA were sustained at Dak To over six days, Nov 17 – 23.

*** Editor’s Note: Battle deaths in Sigler’s book for FSB Ripcord are listed as 61. Based on Keith Nolan’s research a better figure is 75 KIA, including one ARVN interpreter attached to A Co., 2/506th Infantry. This makes the battle of Fire Base Ripcord the 10th deadliest battle of the Vietnam War. – Chuck Hawkins, editor 

Note: Lengthy operations are excluded. Only actions that could be categorized as single or directly related engagements are tabulated. 

Source: From VFW magazine, November 2001; reprinted from Sigler, david B. Vietnam Battle Chronology; U.S. Army and marine Corps Combat Operations, 1965 – 1973. 

Special thanks go to Rick Blythe (HHC, 2/506) for supplying this information to Ripcord report.