One of the good guys is gone: Jan H. Vanderbie died on 27 May 2008 in his home in Natick, MA at the age of 84.He was a rare bird with a rakish charm that hid his most determined soul.


I first encountered Jan when I ran across his book, Prov Rep Vietnam, written about his two years (1966-1968) as a provincial representative (USAID) in I Corps.I was chasing down information about the USMC Combined Action Program. As I recall, it was one of only a few programs in Vietnam about which he had much positive to say.The CAP Marine websites has quotes from Janís book about the program:


I tracked him down to Natick, MA and, true to his never meeting a stranger approach to life, he invited me to stay with his family for a couple of days (circa Iran Contra affair.)It was a great experience and I always looked forward to hearing from Jan.


Jan worked for the US Army at the Quartermaster Laboratories in Natick, MA for many years. He spent part of his teenage years in a Japanese POW camp in Indonesia.


His family website:


Connie Menefee (


Here is the message from Janís family, with contact and other information.


----- Original Message -----

From: Jan Vanderbie

To: darcyvpace pace

Sent: Friday, May 30, 2008 1:50 PM

Subject: some sad news


It is with a sad heart that I share with you the passing of my loving father, Jan/ Bob H. Vanderbie.  He died in his sleep in the early hours of the morning of May 27.  His dedicated wife, Katrinka/ Tinkie was by his side. 


We miss the presence Jan filled but are relieved that he is no longer suffering.  So many of you touched Jan's life in beautiful ways.  And as most of you probably know, his friendships were all-important to him. 


There will be a memorial service on Friday, June 27 at the Unitarian Church in Sherborn, MA at 1:00PM.  We welcome any of you that are able to make this celebration of Jan's life.  If you are not able to come, please feel free to call Tinkie, write a card to her or reply to this email. 


Katrinka Vanderbie

24 Pinewood Avenue

Natick, MA 01760




Kim, Jan's son will also be checking emails at Jan's email address. 


Thank you for all your years of loving friendship.


Darcy Vanderbie-Pace