Congressional Medal of Honor Society

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Vietnam War - U.S. Army

Marvin Rex Young

Details
  • Rank: Staff Sergeant
  • Conflict/Era: Vietnam War
  • Unit/Command:
    Company C, 1st Battalion (Mechanized), 5th Infantry,
    25th Infantry Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Army
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: August 21, 1968
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: near Ben Cui, Republic of Vietnam
Citation
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. S/Sgt. Young distinguished himself at the cost of his life while serving as a squad leader with Company C. While conducting a reconnaissance mission in the vicinity of Ben Cui, Company C was suddenly engaged by an estimated regimental-size force of the North Vietnamese Army. During the initial volley of fire the point element of the 1st Platoon was pinned down, sustaining several casualties, and the acting platoon leader was killed. S/Sgt. Young unhesitatingly assumed command of the platoon and immediately began to organize and deploy his men into a defensive position in order to repel the attacking force. As a human wave attack advanced on S/Sgt. Young's platoon, he moved from position to position, encouraging and directing fire on the hostile insurgents while exposing himself to the hail of enemy bullets. After receiving orders to withdraw to a better defensive position, he remained behind to provide covering fire for the withdrawal. Observing that a small element of the point squad was unable to extract itself from its position, and completely disregarding his personal safety, S/Sgt. Young began moving toward their position, firing as he maneuvered. When halfway to their position he sustained a critical head injury, yet he continued his mission and ordered the element to withdraw. Remaining with the squad as it fought its way to the rear, he was twice seriously wounded in the arm and leg. Although his leg was badly shattered, S/Sgt. Young refused assistance that would have slowed the retreat of his comrades, and he ordered them to continue their withdrawal while he provided protective covering fire. With indomitable courage and heroic self-sacrifice he continued his self-assigned mission until the enemy force engulfed his position. By his gallantry at the cost of his life and in the highest traditions of the military service, S/Sgt. Young has reflected great credit upon himself, his unit and the U.S. Army.
Medal of Honor Recipient Marvin R. Young
Medal of Honor Recipient Marvin R. Young
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Odessa, Ector County, Texas
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Presentation Date & Details: April 7, 1970
    The White House, presented by Pres. Richard M. Nixon to his family
  • Born: May 11, 1947, Alpine, Brewster County, TX, United States
  • Died: August 21, 1968, Republic of Vietnam
  • Buried: Sunset Memorial Cemetery (MH) (Prayer Sec.172-1), Odessa, TX, United States
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