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Gary George Wetzel

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U.S. Army
Medal Of Honor, Vietnam

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Specialist Fourth Class Wetzel was serving as door gunner aboard a helicopter which was part of an insertion force trapped in a landing zone by intense hostile fire. He was going to the aid of his aircraft commander when he was blown into a rice paddy and critically wounded. Although bleeding profusely due to the loss of his left arm and severe wounds in his right arm, chest, and left leg, he staggered back to his original position in his gun-well and took the enemy forces under fire. Through a resolve that overcame the shock and intolerable pain of his injuries, he remained at his position until he had eliminated the automatic weapons emplacement that had been inflicting heavy casualties on the American troops. Refusing to attend his own wounds, he attempted to return to the aid of his aircraft commander but passed out from loss of blood. Regaining consciousness, he persisted in his efforts to drag himself to the aid of his fellow crewman. After an agonizing effort, he came to the side of the crew chief who was trying to drag the aircraft commander to the safety of a nearby dike. Unswerving in his devotion to his fellow man, Specialist Fourth Class Wetzel assisted his crew chief even though the lost consciousness once again during this action.

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