Congressional Medal of Honor Society

Stories of Sacrifice

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Vietnam War - U.S. Marine Corps

Roy Mitchell Wheat

  • Rank: Lance Corporal
  • Conflict/Era: Vietnam War
  • Unit/Command:
    Company K, 3d Battalion, 7th Marines,
    1st Marine Division
  • Military Service Branch: U.S. Marine Corps
  • Medal of Honor Action Date: August 11, 1967
  • Medal of Honor Action Place: along Liberty Road, Dien Ban District, Quang Nam Province, Republic of Vietnam

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. L/Cpl. Wheat and two other marines were assigned the mission of providing security for a Navy construction battalion crane and crew operating along Liberty Road in the vicinity of the Dien Ban district, Quang Nam Province. After the marines had set up security positions in a treeline adjacent to the work site, L/Cpl. Wheat reconnoitered the area to the rear of their location for the possible presence of guerrillas. He then returned to within 10 feet of the friendly position and here unintentionally triggered a well-concealed, bounding type antipersonnel mine. Immediately, a hissing sound was heard which was identified by the three marines as that of a burning time fuse. Shouting a warning to his comrades, L/Cpl. Wheat in a valiant act of heroism hurled himself upon the mine, absorbing the tremendous impact of the explosion with his body. The inspirational personal heroism and extraordinary valor of his unselfish action saved his fellow marines from certain injury and possible death, reflected great credit upon himself, and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.

Medal of Honor Recipient Roy M. Wheat
Medal of Honor Recipient Roy M. Wheat
Additional Details
  • Accredited to: Jackson, Hinds County, Mississippi
  • Awarded Posthumously: Yes
  • Presentation Date & Details: September 23, 1968

    Marine Barracks, Washington, D.C., presented by Sec. of the Navy Paul R. Ignatius to his family

  • Born: July 24, 1947, Moselle, Jones County, MS, United States
  • Died: August 11, 1967, Republic of Vietnam
  • Buried: Eastabuchie Baptist Church Cemetery (MH), Eastabuchie, MS, United States
  • Location of Medal: Naval Air Station, Meridian, MS

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