Herbert Schandler, 1928-2015

Herbert Y. Schandler, a Special Forces Korean War and Vietnam War veteran who held a PhD from Harvard, died July 16 . He was 87 years old and lived in McLean, Virginia.

A native of Asheville, North Carolina, Herb Schandler graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1952. He went on to serve in the Korean War as a platoon leader and company commander in 2nd Infantry Division’s 38th Infantry Regiment. He served two tours in Vietnam, with the 1st Infantry Division in 1965, and as a 101st Airborne Division battalion commander with the 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry, along with a stint  in MACV’s Revolutionary Development Division. He retired from the Army in 1975.

After the Korean War, Col. Schandler was an assistant professor of social sciences at West Point from 1957-60. After the Vietnam War, he served—among other places—with the Library of Congress’s Congressional Research Service as a national defense specialist, and in the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s strategic plans and policy office.

The author of the highly acclaimed The Unmaking of a President: Lyndon Johnson and Vietnam (1977) and America in Vietnam: The War That Couldn’t be Won (2009), his military awards included two Combat Infantryman Badges, the Senior Parachutist Badge, four Legions of Merit, three Bronze Star Medals with V devices, and fourteen Air Medals.


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