Congressional Medal of Honor Society

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Vietnam War - U.S. Army

Louis Edward Willett

Details
  • Rank: Private First Class
  • Conflict/Era: Vietnam War
  • Unit/Command:
    Company C, 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry,
    4th Infantry Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: February 15, 1967
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: Kontum Province, Republic of Vietnam
Citation
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Pfc. Willett distinguished himself while serving as a rifleman in Company C, during combat operations. His squad was conducting a security sweep when it made contact with a large enemy force. The squad was immediately engaged with a heavy volume of automatic-weapons fire and pinned to the ground. Despite the deadly fusillade, Pfc. Willett rose to his feet firing rapid bursts from his weapon and moved to a position from which he placed highly effective fire on the enemy. His action allowed the remainder of his squad to begin to withdraw from the superior enemy force toward the company perimeter. Pfc. Willett covered the squad's withdrawal, but his position drew heavy enemy machine-gun fire, and he received multiple wounds enabling the enemy again to pin down the remainder of the squad. Pfc. Willett struggled to an upright position, and, disregarding his painful wounds, he again engaged the enemy with his rifle to allow his squad to continue its movement and to evacuate several of his comrades who were by now wounded. Moving from position to position, he engaged the enemy at close-range until he was mortally wounded. By his unselfish acts of bravery, Pfc. Willett insured the withdrawal of his comrades to the company position, saving their lives at the cost of his life. Pfc. Willett's valorous actions were in keeping with 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 Louis E. Willett
Medal of Honor Recipient Louis E. Willett
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Brooklyn, Kings County, New York
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Presentation Date & Details: September 5, 1968
    The Pentagon, presented by Sec. of the Army Stanley R. Resor to his family
  • Born: June 19, 1945, Brooklyn, Kings County, NY, United States
  • Died: February 15, 1967, Republic of Vietnam
  • Buried: Saint John's Cemetery (MH) (037-M-024), Middle Village, NY, United States
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