Continuing the Navy recipients of the 20th Century theme, we come to the conflict in Vietnam for a real fire eater – shining with the best traditions of the US fighting man.
Make the most of your day!
OUELLET, DAVID G.
Rank and organization: Seaman, U.S. Navy, River Squadron 5, My Tho Detachment 532. Place and Date: Mekong River, Republic of Vietnam, 6 March 1967. Entered service at: Boston, Mass. Born: 13 June, 1944, Newton, Mass.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. As the forward machine gunner on River Patrol Boat (PBR) 124, which was on patrol during the early evening hours, Seaman Ouellet observed suspicious activity near the river bank, alerted his boat captain, and recommended movement of the boat to the area to investigate. While the PBR was making a high-speed run along the river bank, Seaman Ouellet spotted an incoming enemy grenade falling toward the boat. He immediately left the protected position of his gun mount and ran aft for the full length of the speeding boat, shouting to his fellow crewmembers to take cover. Observing the boat captain standing unprotected on the boat, Seaman Ouellet bounded on to the engine compartment cover, and pushed the boat captain down to safety. In the split second that followed the grenade’s landing, and in the face of certain death, Seaman Ouellet fearlessly placed himself between the deadly missile and his shipmates, courageously absorbing most of the blast fragments with his body in order to protect his shipmates from injury and death. His extraordinary heroism and his selfless and courageous actions on behalf of his comrades at the expense of his life were in the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.