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Wednesday, August 10, 2022

4 Vietnam veterans to be awarded the Medal of Honor

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The people who will obtain the medal — probably the most prestigious ornament within the US army — are Workers Sergeant Edward N. Kaneshiro, Specialist 5 Dwight W. Birdwell, Specialist 5 Dennis M. Fujii and retired Main John J. Duffy.

In 1966, Kaneshiro and members of his platoon have been attacked by North Vietnamese once they entered a village on a search and destroy mission. Based on the White House, “Kaneshiro destroyed one enemy group with rifle hearth and two others with grenades, which enabled the orderly extrication and reorganization of the platoon and in the end led to a profitable withdrawal from the village.” Kaneshiro, who was killed in motion three months after the incident for which he’s being awarded, will obtain the award posthumously.

Kaneshiro’s son informed CNN that his father’s story impressed his personal profession within the army.

“Simply to think about … for him to simply be selfless and to simply bounce into the hearth like that. It impressed me to … reside as much as what he has accomplished,” John Kaneshiro mentioned.

Birdwell, a former Cherokee Nation Supreme Court docket justice, will obtain the medal for his actions in January 1968.

At an air base close to Saigon on the primary day of what would grow to be often called the Tet Offensive, Birdwell and his unit have been below assault by North Vietnamese. Whereas below hearth, he moved a tank commander to security and fired the tank’s weapons at enemy forces, in keeping with the White Home. When the tank weapons have been exhausted, he dismounted and moved to a downed helicopter to retrieve ammunition and machine weapons with a comrade. Birdwell’s machine gun exploded when it was struck by enemy rounds, injuring his face and torso, however he refused to evacuate and led a small group to disrupt the attackers. He then helped evacuate the wounded till ordered to hunt consideration for his personal accidents.

“I did the job that I used to be educated for. I felt like I had to do that. It was a matter of obligation. And I did my obligation as greatest I might,” Birdwell mentioned. “I’ve puzzled a thousand occasions why I survived and a few of the others did not, however I’ve thought once I go up for judgment, if I’ve the braveness, I will ask God that query.”

Fujii will obtain the medal for his actions throughout a helicopter ambulance rescue in Laos and Vietnam throughout 4 days in February 1971.

Aboard a helicopter throughout a mission to evacuate critically wounded Vietnamese army personnel, the plane took on enemy hearth and was compelled to crash land, in keeping with the White Home. As he was injured, Fujii declined rescue from one other helicopter and was the one American to stay behind on the battlefield. He repeatedly uncovered himself to enemy hearth, administered first help to allies and referred to as in US helicopter gunships to repel enemy assaults.

Duffy is receiving the award for his acts in Vietnam in April 1972.

Injured at his battalion’s destroyed command publish in South Vietnam, the place the battalion commander had been killed, Duffy refused to be evacuated. There, he “led a two-day protection of the surrounded FSB in opposition to a battalion-sized enemy power,” in keeping with the US Military. He uncovered himself to the enemy to name in airstrikes and was injured once more when struck by the fragments of a rifle spherical. However Duffy stayed, directing helicopter gunships onto enemy anti-aircraft and artillery positions. He then personally ensured that wounded troops have been moved to security and distributed ammunition. And through a floor assault by enemy forces, Duffy moved a number of occasions to identify targets. Later, he led extra wounded troops to evacuation “whereas in continuous pursuit by the enemy,” the Military states.

Duffy, who’s now 84 years outdated, was deployed to Vietnam 4 occasions, racking up 64 awards and decorations — together with 29 for valor, 4 Bronze Stars, eight Purple Hearts and 7 Air Medals.

“You are honor-bound to do your obligation, and it would not matter the danger or the hazard. You are there to carry out. And so long as you try this, you are in management,” Duffy mentioned forward of being awarded the Medal of Honor.

Tuesday’s ceremony comes every week after the final surviving World Struggle II Medal of Honor recipient, Hershel W. “Woody” Williams, died on the age of 98. Williams will lie in honor on the US Capitol.

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