L/CPL Thomas P. Noonan Jr. Playground

Lance Corporal Thomas P. Noonan Jr. (1943-1969) was a Vietnam War Veteran born in Brooklyn, New York. In 1961 he attended Hunter College in the Bronx, graduating with a B.A. degree in Physical Education in 1966.

Noonan enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve in Brooklyn at the end of 1967 and was discharged to enlist in the regular Marine Corps early 1968. Noonan completed recruit training with the 3rd Recruit Training Battalion, Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, South Carolina, and was promoted to private first class in spring 1968. Summer of 1968 Noonan was ordered to the Republic of Vietnam. He was first assigned duty as a mortar man with H&S Company, 2nd Battalion, 27th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein), FMF. Later Noonan was reassigned to the 3rd Marine Division as a rifleman, where he saw combat with Company G, 2nd Battalion, 9th Marines.

Noonan was promoted to Lance Corporal January 1st, 1969. Lance Corporal Noonan was killed in action February 5th, 1969 while participating in action against the enemy during Operation Dewey Canyon south of Vandegrift Combat Base in Quang Tri Province. Noonan was awarded the Purple Heart, the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal with two bronze stars, and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal. He was also awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously by President Richard Nixon. As described in the citation, Noonan was awarded this medal for his indomitable courage, inspiring initiative, and selfless devotion to duty.

Noonan died attempting to bring wounded men away from enemy fire and back to safety. Noonan dashed across the hazardous terrain of the area and commenced dragging the most seriously wounded man. Although wounded and knocked to the ground by an enemy round, Lance Corporal Noonan recovered rapidly and resumed dragging the man toward the marginal security of a rock. He was however, mortally wounded before he could reach his destination. His actions inspired his fellow Marines to such passion that they initiated a spirited assault which forced the enemy soldiers to withdraw.

In December 2004, Jack Lincks wrote: "You are gone from our presence, but never forgotten. You would be amazed that so many remember you, and that our childhood playground is now named for you. Till we meet again - Semper Fi !" The L/CPL Thomas P. Noonan Jr. Playground holds Noonan's memory, as well as those who knew him.


"L/CPL Thomas P. Noonan Jr. Playground," New York City Department of Parks & Recreation, accessed June 5, 2023, https://www.nycgovparks.org/parks/l-cpl-thomas-p-noonan-jr-playground

"THOMAS PATRICK NOONAN JR.," Congressional Medal of Honor Society, accessed June 5, 2023, https://www.cmohs.org/recipients/thomas-p-noonan-jr

"Thomas P. Noonan," The Virtual Wall, accessed June 6, 2023, https://www.virtualwall.org/dn/NoonanTP01a.htm