By Direction

of the

President of the United States


Distinguished Service Cross

Is Awarded 


Thomas John Loback



Rank and Organization:  Private First Class, Headquarters & Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry, 2nd Brigade, 25th Infantry Division 

Date and Place:  19 February 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: Private First Class Loback distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 19 February 1968 as medical aidman for an infantry platoon conducting a reconnaissance-in-force operation near Hoc Mon. His platoon had just moved into a hedgerow when it was subjected to intense small arms, automatic weapons, and rocket fire from a North Vietnamese Army battalion in well fortified positions. One squad was immediately pinned down by the savage barrage and sustained several casualties. Hearing a call for medical aid, Private Loback unhesitatingly crawled forward through a withering hail of bullets and flying shrapnel, treated five wounded troops and assisted them to a position of relative safety. Continuing to brave the ravaging hostile fusillade, he raced across a bullet-swept rice filed to the side of another wounded comrade and skillfully treated him. The soldier had begun moving toward cover when he was hit again by enemy sniper fire. Exposing himself to a curtain of raking machine gun fire, Private Loback fearlessly rushed back to the casualty and treated him a second time. Refusing to abandon his life-saving mission, he began to pull his seriously wounded patient to safety. Private Loback was instantly killed by enemy automatic weapons fire while gallantly placing the welfare of a fellow soldier above his own in the heat of battle. Private First Class Loback'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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