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Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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Vietnam War - U.S. Army

Dwight Hal Johnson

Details
  • Rank: Specialist Fifth Class
  • Conflict/Era: Vietnam War
  • Unit/Command:
    Company B, 1st Battalion, 69th Armor,
    4th Infantry Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: January 15, 1968
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: near Dak To, Kontum Province, Republic of Vietnam
Citation

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sp5c. Johnson, a tank driver with Company B, was a member of a reaction force moving to aid other elements of his platoon, which was in heavy contact with a battalion-size North Vietnamese force. Sp5c. Johnson's tank, upon reaching the point of contact, threw a track and became immobilized. Realizing that he could do no more as a driver, he climbed out of the vehicle, armed only with a .45 caliber pistol. Despite intense hostile fire, Sp5c. Johnson killed several enemy soldiers before he had expended his ammunition. Returning to his tank through a heavy volume of antitank-rocket, small-arms and automatic weapon fire, he obtained a submachine gun with which to continue his fight against the advancing enemy. Armed with this weapon, Sp5c. Johnson again braved deadly enemy fire to return to the center of the ambush site where he courageously eliminated more of the determined foe. Engaged in extremely close combat when the last of his ammunition was expended, he killed an enemy soldier with the stock end of his submachine gun. Now weaponless, Sp5c. Johnson ignored the enemy fire around him, climbed into his platoon sergeant's tank, extricated a wounded crewmember and carried him to an armored personnel carrier. He then returned to the same tank and assisted in firing the main gun until it jammed. In a magnificent display of courage, Sp5c. Johnson exited the tank and again armed only with a .45 caliber pistol, engaged several North Vietnamese troops in close proximity to the vehicle. Fighting his way through devastating fire and remounting his own immobilized tank, he remained fully exposed to the enemy as he bravely and skillfully engaged them with the tank's externally mounted .50 caliber machine gun, where he remained until the situation was brought under control. Sp5c. Johnson's profound concern for his fellow soldiers, at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty, are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself and the U.S. Army.

Medal of Honor Recipient Dwight H. Johnson
Medal of Honor Recipient Dwight H. Johnson
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Detroit, Wayne County, Michigan
  • Awarded Posthumously: No
  • Presentation Date & Details: November 19, 1968

    The White House, presented by Pres. Lyndon B. Johnson

  • Born: May 7, 1947, Detroit, Wayne County, MI, United States
  • Died: April 30, 1971, Detroit, MI, United States
  • Buried: Arlington National Cemetery (MH) (31-471), Arlington, VA, United States
 

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