En Memoriam: Valor not forgotten.

[Top] Spc. Brock Bowers, infantryman, Honor Guard Company, 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment (The Old Guard), renders honors to Medal of Honor recipient Sgt. Dwight H. Johnson after placing a flag on his grave during Flags In in Arlington National Cemetery, Virginia. The Old Guard has honored America’s fallen heroes by placing American flags before the gravestones and niches of service members buried in Arlington National Cemetery for the past 65 years. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Luisito Brooks, 23 MAY 2013.)

[Middle] Johnson receives the Medal of Honor from President Lyndon B. Johnson on November 19, 1968.

[Bottom] President Lyndon B. Johnson presents Medal of Honor to Captain Angelo Liteky, USA. Also present from left to right, fellow Medal of Honor recipients Specialist-4 Gary Wetzel, Specialist-5 Dwight H. Johnson, Sergeant Sammy L. Davis, Captain James A. Taylor.

Full citation:

Awarded for actions during the Vietnam War

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pleasure in presenting the Medal of Honor to Specialist Fifth Class Dwight Hal Johnson (ASN: US-54953674), United States Army, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving with the 1st Battalion, 69th Armor, 4th Infantry Division, in action against enemy aggressor forces at Dak To, Kontum Province, Republic of Vietnam, on 15 January 1968. Specialist Fifth Class Johnson, a tank driver with Company B, was a member of a reaction force moving to aid other elements of his platoon, which was in heavy contact with a battalion size North Vietnamese force. Specialist Fifth Class Johnson’s tank, upon reaching the point of contact, threw a track and became immobilized. Realizing that he could do no more as a driver, he climbed out of the vehicle, armed only with a .45 caliber pistol. Despite intense hostile fire, Specialist Fifth Class Johnson killed several enemy soldiers before he had expended his ammunition. Returning to his tank through a heavy volume of antitank rocket, small arms and automatic weapons fire, he obtained a submachine gun with which to continue his fight against the advancing enemy. Armed with this weapon, Specialist Fifth Class Johnson again braved deadly enemy fire to return to the center of the ambush site where he courageously eliminated more of the determined foe. Engaged in extremely close combat when the last of his ammunition was expended, he killed an enemy soldier with the stock end of his submachine gun. Now weaponless, Specialist Fifth Class Johnson ignored the enemy fire around him, climbed into his platoon sergeant’s tank, extricated a wounded crewmember and carried him to an armored personnel carrier. He then returned to the same tank and assisted in firing the main gun until it jammed. In a magnificent display of courage, Specialist Fifth Class Johnson exited the tank and again armed only with a .45 caliber pistol, engaged several North Vietnamese troops in close proximity to the vehicle. Fighting his way through devastating fire and remounting his own immobilized tank, he remained fully exposed to the enemy as he bravely and skillfully engaged them with the tank’s externally-mounted .50 caliber machinegun; where he remained until the situation was brought under control. Specialist Fifth Class Johnson’s profound concern for his fellow soldiers, at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself and the United States Army.

General Orders: Department of the Army, General Orders No. 76 (December 10, 1968)

Action Date: 15-Jan-68

Service: Army

Rank: Specialist Fifth Class

Company: Company B

Battalion: 1st Battalion

Regiment: 69th Armor

Division: 4th Infantry Division


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