Sperb, William Lyle, HM2

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Last Rank
Petty Officer Second Class
Last Primary NEC
HM-8404-Medical Field Service Technician/FMF Combat Corpsman
Last Rating/NEC Group
Hospital Corpsman
Primary Unit
1969-1969, HM-8404, HM-16
Service Years
1967 - 1969
HM-Hospital Corpsman

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by Richard Hopka (SW)(AW)(FMF), HM1 to remember Sperb, William Lyle, HM2.

If you knew or served with this Sailor and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Casualty Info
Home Town
Not Specified
Last Address

Casualty Date
Apr 14, 1969
Hostile, Died of Wounds
Gun, Small Arms Fire
Vietnam, South (Vietnam)
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
Willamette National Cemetery - Portland, Oregon
Wall/Plot Coordinates
27W 083

 Official Badges 

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  1968-1969, HM-8404, HMM-364 Purple Foxes

HM-Hospital Corpsman

From Month/Year
- / 1968

To Month/Year
- / 1969

HMM-364 Purple Foxes Unit Page

Petty Officer Second Class

HM-8404-Medical Field Service Technician/FMF Combat Corpsman

Not Specified

Vietnam, South (Vietnam)
 HMM-364 Purple Foxes Details

HMM-364 Purple Foxes
Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 364 (HMM-364)

Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 364 was originally commissioned as Marine Light Helicopter Squadron 364 (HML-364) on September 1, 1961 at Marine Corps Air Facility Santa AnaCalifornia. In November 1961, it received its first Sikorsky H-34 helicopter and in February 1962, the designation of the squadron was changed to its present title.

In the spring of 1962, the squadron participated in Mid-Pacific operations to assist in recovering instruments that had been used in the atomic test program.


Vietnam War

In November 1963, the squadron deployed to Okinawa and subsequently to Da NangRepublic of Vietnam. The squadron served in Vietnam until July 1964.

Eight months later the squadron was back in South Vietnam, this time conducting operations, including operations with the Special Landing Force of the Seventh Fleet. HMM-364 remained in Vietnam until September 1966.

The squadron was then placed in cadre status at Marine Corps Air Station El Toro, California and consisted of three officers and 12 enlisted Marines. In March 1967, the squadron was reorganized and began receiving the new Boeing CH-46 Sea Knight helicopters. In October of that year, HMM-364 re-deployed to the Republic of Vietnam, initially at Phu Bai and eventually at Marble Mountain. During this tour HMM-364 participated in operations Osceola, Kentucky, Mamaluke Thrust, and Hue City and finally in the evacuation of the embassy in Saigon. For almost half of its short 10-year existence, HMM-364 served in the Republic of Vietnam. During its three tours there, the squadron's pilots and crewmen flew almost 70,000 hours in combat and combat support missions and the squadron was awarded the Presidential Unit Citation for meritorious conduct in the performance of duty.

During this time period the squadron adopted the "Purple Fox" name from a cartoon purple fox mascot called Swifty. On March 22, 1971, the squadron folded its colors and was decommissioned.



On September 28, 1984, HMM-364 was reactivated at Marine Aircraft Group 24, 1st Marine Brigade, Fleet Marine Force,Marine Corps Air Station Kaneohe BayHawaii. On October 12, 1984, Commandant of the Marine CorpsGen. P. X. Kelley, publicly reactivated the squadron by presenting the unit colors to the Commanding Officer.

In February 1990, the Purple Foxes deployed to Okinawa, Japan. From August 1990 to March 1991, HMM-364 was placed in reserve during Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm becoming the sole supporting squadron for 1st Marine Expeditionary Brigade.

In June 1991, the Purple Foxes once again deployed to Okinawa. During the deployment, the squadron supported Marine Air Ground Task Force 4-90 in the Republic of the Philippines before, during and after the eruption of Mount Pinatuboand resulting devastation. Continuing into 1992, the Purple Foxes would find themselves on the island Kauai, for Operation Garden Isle, performing humanitarian relief due to the devastation left by Hurricane Iniki.

In February 1996, the Purple Foxes provided executive transport for President Clinton and other dignitaries while they toured flood damaged Portland, Oregon. This marked the first time in history that a U.S. President had flown in a Fleet Marine Force helicopter.

On December 5, 1998, the squadron embarked aboard the USS Boxer (LHD-4) participating in Operation Southern Watch and various split-ARG operations off the Horn of Africa.

In June 1999 the Purple Foxes returned off deployment and moved into their new home at Marine Aircraft Group 39aboard Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, California. The Purple Foxes began training to their new core competency of being part of 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing's "Fly In" Echelon for contingency operations.


Air Units - Rotary Wing


Parent Unit
USMC Helicopter Squadrons

Air Squadron

Created/Owned By
Not Specified

Last Updated: Jan 26, 2008
My Photos For This Duty Station
No Available Photos
5 Members Also There at Same Time
HMM-364 Purple Foxes

Tyrrell, Walter Ripley, PO2, (1966-1969) HM HM-8404 Petty Officer Second Class
Young, Gary Norman, HN, (1967-1969) HM HM-8404 Hospitalman
Lederman, Melvin, CDR, (1946-1969) OFF 210X Commander
Lubin, Richard Marc, HN, (1967-1969) HN HN-8404 Hospitalman
Sullivan, John, CPO, (1952-1978) Petty Officer First Class

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