Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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Vietnam War - U.S. Marine Corps

Ralph Ellis Dias

Details
  • Rank: Private First Class
  • Conflict/Era: Vietnam War
  • Unit/Command:
    3d Platoon, Company D, 1st Battalion, 7th Marines,
    1st Marine Division (Rein) FMF
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Marine Corps
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: November 12, 1969
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: Que Son Mountains, Republic of Vietnam
Citation

As a member of a reaction force which was pinned down by enemy fire while assisting a platoon in the same circumstance, Pfc. Dias, observing that both units were sustaining casualties, initiated an aggressive assault against an enemy machine-gun bunker which was the principal source of hostile fire. Severely wounded by enemy snipers while charging across the open area, he pulled himself to the shelter of a nearby rock. Braving enemy fire for a second time, Pfc. Dias was again wounded. Unable to walk, he crawled 15 meters to the protection of a rock located near his objective and, repeatedly exposing himself to intense hostile fire, unsuccessfully threw several hand grenades at the machine-gun emplacement. Still determined to destroy the emplacement, Pfc. Dias again moved into the open and was wounded a third time by sniper fire. As he threw a last grenade, which destroyed the enemy position, he was mortally wounded by another enemy round. Pfc. Dias' indomitable courage, dynamic initiative, and selfless devotion to duty upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life in the service of his country.

Medal of Honor Recipient Ralph E. Dias
Medal of Honor Recipient Ralph E. Dias
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Presentation Date & Details: July 17, 1974

    Blair House, presented by Vice Pres. Gerald R. Ford to his family

  • Born: July 15, 1950, Shelocta, Armstrong County, PA, United States
  • Died: November 12, 1969, Republic of Vietnam
  • Buried: Oakdale Cemetery (PMH) (3), Leetonia, OH, United States
  • Location of Medal: Ohio Military Museum, Massillon, OH
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