LCM Melvin "Mel" C. Howell was a VHPA member who died after his tour in Vietnam on 03/17/2014 at the age of 75.5
Evansville, IN
Date of Birth 09/21/1938
Served in the U.S. Navy
Served in Vietnam with HS-2 in 65-66, HS-10 in 67-68, HA(L)-3 DET 3 in 70-71
Call signs in Vietnam BIG MOTHER, SEAWOLF 35
This information was provided by NHAHA email to Mike Law

More detail on this person: Melvin C. Howell, 75, of Evansville, Indiana, passed away on Monday, March 17, 2014, at his home.

Melvin was born on September 21, 1938, in Evansville, Indiana. He attended Culver Grade School and Bosse High School. Melvin married Thelma Tremper on Christmas Eve 1957. They immediately left for Rhode Island where Melvin was stationed in the United States Navy. While stationed in Rhode Island, their son, Randy was born. Melvin was then based in Argentina, Newfoundland, followed by Pensacola, Florida and then San Diego, California.

While stationed in Pensacola, he received the rank of First Class Chief Petty Officer and was featured on the front page of (All Hands) Naval magazine stating he was the youngest First Class Chief Petty Officer in the United States Navy. While serving as a helicopter pilot on the U.S.S. Hornet during the Vietnam war, he received the distinguished Flying Cross for a rescue mission in North Vietnam. While in San Diego, he and Thelma had the privilege to attend dinner with Elmo Zamwault, the Chief of Naval Operations. Melvin retired after 20 years in the Navy as a Lieutenant Commander. He returned home to Evansville, Indiana, and was employed at United States Postal Service as a letter carrier.

After retirement, Melvin became a dedicated member of Germania Maennerchor. He was a past officer and on numerous committees. He spent most of his time there with his friends. He was a member of the Germania Maennerchor choir and enjoyed singing at different activities and churches and nursing homes. He also played in the Rhein Valley Brass. Melvin was a very talented person and excelled in all his endeavors. He played the trumpet, sang and painted. He always wanted to help those in need. He was an avid reader, his favorite book was Invitation to Valhalla and favorite movie was Anne of Green Gables.

Besides the different states where they resided, he and his wife, Thelma, enjoyed traveling to Hawaii, Japan, Hong Kong, Mexico and Jamaica. Melvin was also a member of the VFW Denby Post #2953, HA (L) 3 U.S. Navy Sea Wolves, U.S. Navy BINH THUY RVN, German American Gesangverein.

Melvin is survived by his sister, Linda Bond, and her son, Patrick and her daughters, Jamie and Nicole; sisters-in-law, Beatrice Gulledge (Bob), of Evansville, IN, and Mary Tremper, of Evansville, IN; nephews, Robert Gulledge Jr., of Evansville, IN, and Jonathon Tremper, of Evansville, IN; niece, Kelly Kissell (Dan), of Evansville, IN; great-nephews, Andrew Kissel and Rob Gulledge III; great-niece, Darby Kissell; and many cousins.

Melvin is preceded in death by his parents, Anna Louise (Poer) and Clay Howell; his wife, Thelma (Tremper) Howell, in June 2004; his son, Randall in July 2003; and his brother, Kenneth Clay Howell.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, March 24, 2014, at Browning Funeral Home, 738 E. Diamond Ave., Evansville, IN 47711, with Rev. Steve Clayton officiating. Entombment will be held at Memorial Park Cemetery where the Retired Veterans Memorial Club will perform military rites.

Friends may visit from 2 until 6 p.m. Sunday, March 23, 2014, at Browning Funeral Home and again from 10 a.m. until time of service on Monday.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Vanderburgh Humane Society, P.O. Box 6711, Evansville, IN 47719, Germania Maennerchor, 916 North Fulton Ave., Evansville, IN 47710 or Holly's House, P.O. Box 4125, Evansville, IN 47724. Condolences may be made online at

Published in Courier Press on Mar. 21, 2014

This information was last updated 05/18/2016

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