07NOV65: Lieutenant Commander Charles G. Wack was awarded the Silver Star for leading a strike against Surface
to Air Missile sites south of Nam Dinh, North Vietnam. All though his Skyhawk was badly damaged by
antiaircraft fire he pressed his attack and successfully completed his mission before being forced
to eject from his A-4E Skyhawk BuNo. 150071 AH 343 when it caught fire. Commander Wack's ejection
was successful and he was recovered.
May 11, 1966: Attack Squadron SEVENTY-SIX Commanding Officer, Cdr. J. B. Linder, awarded Silver Star for leading a strike against a mobile SAM site at Thanh Hoa, North Vietnam.
Commander Wynn F. Foster, the Saint's commanding officer, was personally hit by anti-aircraft fire over Vinh, North Vietnam; Commander Foster suffered the loss of his right arm. Using only his left hand, Commander Foster piloted his crippled Skyhawk to sea and ejected, where personnel of the United States Ship Reeves (DLG-24) rescued him. Commander Foster was awarded the Silver Star for his actions
1LT Augusto Xavier, flying an A-4C SKYHAWK from VMA-311, was killed while flying close air support for the A Shau Special Forces Camp. His body has never been recovered. Lieutenant Xavier was posthumously awarded the Silver Star.
April 20, 1967: Cdr. S. R. Chessman, the VA-195 Dambuster's executive officer, was awarded the Silver Star for his actions in planning and executing a successful strike against a Haiphong thermal power plant, accomplishing the mission without the loss of a single aircraft.
1967: CDR Ernest M. Moore was award the Silver Star for "evading eight SAM missiles and neutralizing two SAM sites" during the strike at Vin Dinh. He also received the Distinguished Flying Cross and his seventh Air Medal for previous missions. JUN67 NAN.
November 6 & 7, 1965: Commander Gordon H. Smith was awarded the Silver Star for his participation as Flight Leader in directing and assisting in the first night rescue of a downed aviator in enemy territory on 6 November. This was followed by an attempt to rescue another aviator the following day in the same area.
November 7, 1965: Lieutenant Gordon C. Wileen was awarded the Silver Star for his participation in an attempted air rescue of a downed aviator deep in enemy territory.
November 13, 1965: Commander Albert E. Knutson was awarded the Silver Star for his attempt to locate and rescue a downed pilot in enemy territory. During the rescue attempt his aircraft sustained 26 hits.
July 23, 1966: Cdr. Wynn Foster (CO) ejected after his Skyhawk (BuNo 152100) was hit by 57mm AAA at 12,000 feet as he crossed the coast N of Vinh. The shrapnel severed his right arm just below the shoulder. He managed to fly 20 miles out to sea and ejected near the SAR destroyer USS Reeves (DLG-24) which picked him up and he was rapidly transferred to the Oriskany. Cdr. Foster was awarded the Silver Star for his actions.
On 13 November 1965, two weeks prior to the squadron's scheduled date of departure from the combat theater for return to the U.S., Cdr. Jenkins' A-4 Skyhawk was struck by enemy anti-aircraft fire over North Vietnam. With his aircraft damaged and out of control, Jenkins was forced to eject over enemy territory. He was captured by the North Vietnamese and spent almost seven and a half years as a Prisoner of War. ....He had been awarded four Silver Star Medals.
LTjg Read Mecleary's May 26, 1967 and was in a division of flak suppressors leading an Alpha Strike. These are his words: "On my 56th mission, the plane I was piloting [NM 302, BuNo 152022] was hit by a surface -to-air missile when on a strike against Kep Airfield 60km east of Hanoi. When I ejected I was badly injured due to the 600+ mile-an-hour wind-blast and was unable to walk for about two months." "I was held prisoner in seven different prison camps in and around Hanoi and one about 10km south of the Chinese border. Like most other American POWs I was tortured with ropes for military and political information. On March 4, 1973, after 69 months and five days I was released." "I was awarded the Silver Star......
President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Major Frederick Earl Lewis (MCSN: 0-81635), United States Marine Corps, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving with Headquarters and Maintenance Squadron ELEVEN, Marine Aircraft Group ELEVEN, FIRST Marine Aircraft Wing, in connection with combat operations against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam.
24 OCT 1965: LCdr Weichman of VA-164 participated in several strikes in the Hanoi-Haiphong area, including the MiG base at Phuc Yen. He received the Silver Star for a mission on 24 OCT when he led eight planes tasked with missile suppression ahead of the major strike against Phuc Yen. He began a low-level run for a loft delivery of one of his Shrike anti-radar missiles. His target was an occupied missile battery. During his successful attack, which took out he site, his A-4 (151194) sustained many hits from flak as well as from several SAM launches. The determined aviator headed for one of the missile launch areas, this time dealing with heavy 85mm flak. SAMs wer also passing him from nearly every direction, their explosions occasionally sending shrapnel into his jet, knocking out the radio and navigational equipment. Finally, with A-4 threatening to shake itself apart, he headed bck toward the water, all the while threading his way through the flak. He recovered aboard the Oriskany, his Skyhawk showing more than 140 holes.
November 7, 1965: Commander J. D. Shaw, VA-164, Commanding Officer, was awarded the Silver Star for successfully leading a strike against a North Vietnamese SAM site.
October 27, 1967: Cdr. D. F. Mow, VA-164's commanding officer, was awarded the Silver Star for combat over North Vietnam and Cdr. W.F. Span was also awarded his second Silver Star for combat over North Vietnam.
01 May 1966: Lt. C.O. Tolbert was awarded the Silver Star for his actions during a combat mission over North Vietnam involving the Xom Dom Dien supply area and the sighting of a SAM missile battery which was destroyed in a later mission.
07 July 1966: The Black Diamonds's commanding officer, Cdr. Carl Birdwell, was awarded the Silver Star for his actions in a strike against the Haiphong POL storage area.
December 1966: VA-12 CO Cdr. Barnett, was awarded the Silver Star for leading a 42-plane Alpha Strike against a heavily defended target in North Vietnam.
February 7, 1966: LCdr. Render Crayton ejected and was captured after he was hit by 37mm AAA as he was diving to attack railway trucks near Phu Dien Chau and his Skyhawk became uncontrollable. LCdr Render Crayton was awarded the Silver Star (in absentia) for his actions while engaged in a combat mission over North Vietnam.
June 19, 1968: LCdr Crater received the Silver Star for his actions in coordinating the successful night rescue of a downed F-4 Phantom crewman in North Vietnam. This action was part of the rescue operations in which helicopter pilot Lieutenant Lassen received the Medal of Honor for his exploits.
March 9, 1966: 1st Lt. Augusto Maria "Gussie" Xavier was killed when he crashed (BuNo 148518) into the side of a mountain as he was leaving the target area after a strafing run about 80 miles west of Da Nang in support of beleaguered U.S. Special Forces (Green Berets) and ARVN troops in the A Shau valley. Lt. Xavier was leading a flight of four A-4 Skyhawks on a pre-dawn close air support mission under parachute flares dropped by a C-123. Lt. Xavier was awarded a posthumous Silver Star for his determination in pressing home his attack in foul weather in an attempt to support the defenders on the ground.
June 3, 1966: The squadron's CO, Cdr. M. J. Chewning, while on a mission over North Vietnam, lost the use of his left arm due to a shrapnel hit. He continued his mission, striking a road target, and then returned to the carrier, making a one-handed carrier landing. For his exploits he was awarded the Silver Star and the Purple Heart.
June 15, 1966: LCdr. T.F. Kopfman flying A-4E Skyhawk BuNo 152063 side number NK 403 was shot down by AAA anti-aircraft over North Vietnam. Commander Kopfman ejected and was captured and made Prisoner-Of-War by the North Vietnamese. Commander Kopfman was awarded the Silver Star, in absentia, for his actions over North Vietnam. He was released by North Vietnam and returned to the United States in 1973.
March 30, 1968: As a direct result of his courage: UNGAR, THOMAS D.
Synopsis: The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star Medal to Thomas D. Ungar, Captain, U.S. Marine Corps, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving with Marine Attack Squadron 121 (VMA(AW)-121), 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, in connection with combat operations against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam on March 30, 1968. By his courage, aggressive fighting spirit and steadfast devotion to duty in the face of extreme personal danger, Captain Ungar upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.
Home Town: St. Louis, Missouri
December 20, 1967: Cdrs. J. R. Powell, Jr. and R. C. Bos were awarded the Silver Star for planning and leading a successful strike against the heavily defended Haiphong Thermal Power Plant (west).
June 30, 1966: Cdr. Homer L. Smith, the squadron's Commanding Officer, was awarded the Silver Star for leading an air strike against the Bac Giang, North Vietnam POL facility.
September 30, 1967: Cdr. Robert F. Dunn was awarded a Silver Star for his actions on this date.
May 10, 1967: Cdr. M. L. Minnis, Sr., was awarded the Silver Star for action during a strike into North Vietnam against the thermal power plant at Haiphong.
November 22, 1966: Commander Henry D. Arnold, commanding officer of VA-22, received the Silver Star Medal for his actions during a strike against a Haiphong surface-to-air missile support facility.