By Direction

of the

President of the United States


Distinguished Service Cross

Is Awarded


Walter T. Bahl




Rank and Unit:  Specialist Four, Company D, 2nd Battalion (Airmobile), 7th Cavalry, 3rd  Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile)

Date and Place:  3 December 1968,  Republic of Vietnam

Reason:   For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam:  Specialist Four Bahl distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 3 December 1968 as a medic on a reconnaissance-in-force mission northeast of Quan Loi.  His company made contact with an estimated battalion-size North Vietnamese Army force located in well concealed positions and armed with automatic and semi-automatic weapons, rockets and mortars.  Specialist Bahl immediately went to the aid of his comrades and, after evacuating all of the injured members of his element to a medical evacuation site, rushed to the platoon which was engaged in treating and carrying them to the evacuation point, the waist-high grass in which several of the casualties lay was ignited by the constant enemy barrage.  Working feverishly, he rescued the men and then used his shirt to beat out the fire before he was forced back by the spreading flames, suffering burns and near exhaustion.  Hearing a cry for a medic, he again risked the weathering hostile fire to reach the stricken soldier.  He was painfully wounded by an enemy grenade as he started to render medical aid, but fearlessly began to pull the man to safety.  Although wounded a second time, he still continued his attempt to remove his comrade until he was struck a third time by the hostile fusillade and was mortally wounded.  Specialist Four Bahl's extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty, at the cost of his life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.


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