Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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Vietnam War - U.S. Army

Charles Ernest Hosking Jr.

  • Rank: Master Sergeant (rank at time of action: Staff Sergeant)
  • Conflict/Era: Vietnam War
  • Unit/Command:
    Detachment A-302, Company A, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne),
    1st Special Forces
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: March 21, 1967
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: Don Luan District, Phuoc Long Province, Republic of Vietnam
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. M/Sgt. Hosking (then Sfc.), Detachment A-302, Company A, greatly distinguished himself while serving as company adviser in the III Corps Civilian Irregular Defense Group Reaction Battalion during combat operations in Don Luan District. A Viet Cong suspect was apprehended and subsequently identified as a Viet Cong sniper. While M/Sgt. Hosking was preparing the enemy for movement back to the base camp, the prisoner suddenly grabbed a hand grenade from M/Sgt. Hosking's belt, armed the grenade, and started running towards the company command group which consisted of two Americans and two Vietnamese who were standing a few feet away. Instantly realizing that the enemy intended to kill the other men, M/Sgt. Hosking immediately leaped upon the Viet Cong's back. With utter disregard for his personal safety, he grasped the Viet Cong in a "Bear Hug" forcing the grenade against the enemy soldier's chest. He then wrestled the Viet Cong to the ground and covered the enemy's body with his body until the grenade detonated. The blast instantly killed both M/Sgt. Hosking and the Viet Cong. By absorbing the full force of the exploding grenade with his body and that of the enemy, he saved the other members of his command group from death or serious injury. M/Sgt. Hosking's risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty are in the highest traditions of the U.S. Army and reflect great credit upon himself and the Armed Forces of his country.
Medal of Honor Recipient Charles E. Hosking Jr.
Medal of Honor Recipient Charles E. Hosking Jr.
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Fort Dix, Mercer County, New Jersey
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Presentation Date & Details: May 23, 1969
    The White House, presented by Pres. Richard M. Nixon to his Widow
  • Born: May 12, 1924, Ramsey, Bergen County, NJ, United States
  • Died: March 21, 1967, Republic of Vietnam
  • Buried: Valleau Cemetery (1091), Ridgewood, NJ, United States

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