Middleboro man killed in Vietnam to be honored with bridge naming

Apr 15, 2024

MIDDLEBORO — A bridge near 48 Wareham St. will be dedicated to a Middleboro High School graduate who was killed in action in Vietnam. 

The Fred Z. Washburn Bridge dedication will take place at 4 p.m. Wednesday, April 24 at the bridge near 48 Wareham St. 

Army First Lt. Washburn. a helicopter pilot, was killed in action when his helicopter was shot down Oct. 2, 1968 in Quang Tin Province while he was on a rescue mission. He would have turned 24 nine days later.

In a letter to his mother, Washburn wrote about evacuating wounded soldiers. “It is rather rewarding to be saving rather than taking a life.’’

He was the son of Margery and Zimri Washburn, who lived on Fuller Street. In his yearbook, he was described as “resourceful, genial, level-headed.’’

He is listed on 42W-line 65 on the wall at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C.

His classmates in the Middleboro High School Class of 1962 reached out to the town after realizing that he had no permanent memorial in town. 

The select board approved naming the bridge in his honor at the Jan. 22 meeting.