Special Operations Memorial Foundation

Gary Lee (MOH Citation) Littrell

Gary Lee (MOH Citation) Littrell

U.S. Army

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action in Kontum Province during 4 – 8 April 1970, at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sergeant First Class Gary Littrell , U.S. Military Assistance Command, Vietnam, Advisory Team 21, distinguished himself while serving as a light Weapons Infantry Advisor with the 23rd Battalion, 2nd Ranger Group, Army of the Republic of Vietnam, near Dak Seang. After establishing a defensive perimeter on a hill on 4 April, the battalion was subjected to an intense enemy mortar attack, which killed the Vietnamese commander, one advisor, and seriously wounded all the advisors except Sergeant First Class Littrell. During the ensuing four days, Sergeant First Class Littrell exhibited near super-human endurance as he single handedly bolstered the besieged battalion. Repeatedly abandoning positions of relative safety, he directed artillery and air support by day and marked the unit’s location by night, despite heavy, concentrated enemy fire. His dauntless will instilled in the men of the 23rd Battalion a deep desire to resist. Assault after assault was repulsed as the battalion responded to the extraordinary leadership and personal example exhibited by Sergeant First Class Littrell as he continuously moved to those points most seriously threatened by the enemy, redistributed ammunition, strengthened faltering defenses, cared for the wounded, and shouted encouragement to the Vietnamese in their own language. When the beleaguered battalion was finally ordered to withdraw, numerous ambushes were encountered. Sergeant First Class Littrell repeatedly prevented widespread disorder by directing air strikes to within 50 meters of their position. Through his indomitable courage and complete disregard for his safety, he averted excessive loss of life and injury to the members of the battalion. The sustained extraordinary courage and selflessness displayed by Sergeant First Class Littrell over an extended period of time were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit on him and the U.S. Army.

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