By Direction

of the

President of the United States

The

Distinguished Service Cross

Is Awarded Posthumously

To

  Billie A. Hall

(Posthumously)

 

Rank and Organization:  Staff Sergeant, Special Forces Detachment A-102

Date and Place:  9 March 1966, Republic of Vietnam

Reason:  On 9 March 1966, Special Forces Detachment A-102 at Camp Ashau was subjected to a mortar barrage and small arms fire. After a day of continuous enemy bombardment, Camp A Shau was attacked by two North Vietnamese Regiments. With the advantage of surprise, superior firepower and bad weather the enemy hurled wave after wave of troops at the weakening defenses on Camp A Shau. The vicious battle forced the evacuation of the camp, and resulted in heavy casualties on both sides. Sergeant Hall, a medic, had accompanied a company of one hundred and forty-three men to reinforce Camp A Shau. When the attack started, Sergeant Hall grabbed his weapon and aid kit and ran from his quarters. Seeing many wounded in the center of the camp he ran through the enemy fire to assist in dragging the wounded to safety and treating them. Throughout the bombardment, he ran from position to position treating the wounded. Seeing two wounded Americans lying on a road in the center of the camp in the midst of numerous mortar explosions, Sergeant Hall ran to their aid. With enemy mortar rounds bursting all around him, he reached the two men and dragged them into a ditch and gave them medical aid. A direct hit on this trench killed one of the wounded Americans, an interpreter and wounded two other Americans nearby. Although Sergeant Hall had both his legs blown off when this round exploded, he refused medical attention. Being the only qualified medic at that location, he realized his responsibility to the wounded. Only after these men were treated and moved did he allow himself to be carried to the dispensary. On reaching the dispensary, though in extreme pain and weak from great loss of blood, Sergeant Hall permitted only slight treatment of his severe wounds to stem the flow of blood so he might live longer to direct operations at the aid station. Through an interpreter, he directed indigenous medics in caring for the wounded. He continued this gallant task until his body could withstand no more the demands being placed upon it, and he lapsed into a coma and died. Sergeant Hall's conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the cost of his own life, was a continuous inspiration to the entire garrison of Camp A Shau. His sacrifice was the spark needed to ignite the flame of desire in each man to repulse the relentless enemy as long as means were available. Sergeant Hall's unimpeachable valor in close combat was in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.

 

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