Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Medal of Honor

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Captain Gary Michael Rose


For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity, at the risk of his life, above and beyond the call of duty, (then) Sergeant Gary M. Rose distinguished himself by acts of gallantry and intrepidity while serving as a Special Forces Medic with a company sized exploitation force Special Operations Augmentation, Command and Control Central, Fifth Special Forces Group Airborne, 1st Special Forces Republic of Viet Nam. Between 11 and 14 September 1970, Sgt. Rose's company was continuously engaged by a well armed and numerically superior hostile force deep in enemy controlled territory. Enemy B-40 rockets and mortar rounds rained down while the adversary sprayed the area with small arms and machine gun fire, wounding many and forcing everyone to seek cover.

Sgt. Rose, braving the hail of bullets, sprinted 50 meters to a wounded soldier's side. He then used his own body to protect the casualty from further injury while treating his wounds. After stabilizing the casualty, Sgt. Rose carried him through the bullet ridden combat zone to protective cover. As the enemy accelerated the attack, Sgt. Rose continuously exposed himself to intense fire as he fearlessly moved from casualty to casualty administering life saving aid. A B-40 rocket impacted just meters from Sgt. Rose, knocking him from his feet and injuring his head, hand and foot. Ignoring his wounds, Sgt. Rose struggled to his feet and continued to render aid to the other injured soldiers.

During an attempted medevac, Sgt. Rose again exposed himself to enemy fire, as he attempted to hoist wounded personnel up to the hovering helicopter which was unable to land due to unsuitable terrain. The medevac mission was aborted due to intense enemy fire and the helicopter crashed a few miles away due to the enemy fire sustained during the attempted extraction.

Over the next two days Sgt. Rose continued to expose himself to enemy fire in order to treat the wounded, estimated to be half of the company's personnel. On September 14th, during the company's eventual helicopter extraction, the enemy launched a full scale offensive. Sgt. Rose, after loading wounded personnel on the first set of extraction helicopters, returned to the outer perimeter under enemy fire, carrying friendly causalities and moving wounded personnel to more secure positions until they could be evacuated.

He then returned to the perimeter to help repel the enemy, until the final extraction helicopter had arrived. As the final helicopter was loaded, the enemy began to overrun the company's position and the helicopter's Marine door gunner was shot in the neck. Sgt. Rose instantly administered critical medical treatment on board the helicopter, saving the Marine's life. The helicopter carrying Sgt. Rose crashed several hundred meters from the extraction point, further injuring Sgt. Rose and the personnel on board. Despite his numerous wounds from the past three days, Sgt. Rose continued to pull and carry unconscious and wounded personnel out of the burning wreckage and continued to administer aid to the wounded until another extraction helicopter arrived.

Sgt. Rose's extraordinary heroism and selflessness above and beyond the call of duty, were critical to saving numerous lives over that four day time period. His actions are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, the 1st. Special Forces and the United States Army.

Captain Rose: We humbly salute you and thank you for your service.

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Hat tip Home of Heroes

There are seventy six living MoH recipients today. Their names and their stories should not be forgotten. My mission is to honor one of those heroes here each week, and salute them for their courage and sacrifice. In the words of John Fitzgerald Kennedy:

“A nation reveals itself not only by the men it produces, but also by the men it honors; the men it remembers.”

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