Marker #2046 Sergeant Ronald L. Niewahner

Historical Marker #2046, in Villa Hills, Kentucky, honors Sergeant Ronald L. Niewahner, who was awarded the Purple Heart for his service with the United States Army during the Vietnam War.

Ronald Leo Niewahner was born in Kenton County, Kentucky, on December 3rd, 1948. He attended Dixie Heights High School and worked for the Fedder’s Food Market in Crescent Hills. During his adolescent years he also volunteered for the Crescent Springs Fire Department. He was drafted into the Army by way of the Selective Service System. In March of 1968 he was promoted to sergeant, and on November 17th of that same year he was transferred to Vietnam. He was placed in the specialty of the Light Weapons Infantry. Niewahner served in South Vietnam with Company B, 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division. Barely a month into his active duty, Niewahner was shot in a small arms fire in the Hua Nghia province. Company B was conducting a search and sweep mission and many of the soldiers were shot down. Niewahner was quick to help others to safety; he saved the lives of two men. He was hit by fragments of an enemy antitank rocket and small arms fire while carrying other troops. Niewahner’s injuries were fatal. In honor of his service and dedication to his fellow soldiers, Niewahner was awarded the Bronze Star, the Silver Star, and a Purple Heart. The Republic of Vietnam also recognized his service and presented the Niewahner family with a Military Merit Medal and a Galantry Cross with Palm.

Marker #2046 was dedicated in 2000 by the Kentucky Historical Society and the Kentucky Department of Highways. It reads: SGT Ronald L. Niewahner. Born in Covington, SGT Niewahner (1948-1968) distinguished himself by heroic actions in Vietnam. As squad leader in Co. B, 1st Bn., 5th Inf., 25th Inf. Div., U.S. Army, he evacuated fallen comrade in bullet-swept area. Fatally wounded returning to rescue second soldier. Awarded Bronze Star, Silver Star, Gallantry Cross, and Purple Heart. Presented by Villa Hills Historical Society.