2022 // Silver Star

Richard E. Tangel

For gallantry in action involving close combat against an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam:

Sergeant Tangel distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions during the period 4 April 1968 to 8 April 1968, while serving as an Acting Platoon Leader with Company B, 3rd Battalion, 47th Infantry, 9th Infantry Division, on a reconnaissance in force mission in Kien Hoa Province, Vietnam.  During the early morning hours, an estimated battalion of Viet Cong ambushed the company’s column of armored troop carriers while it was proceeding down a waterway to its objective.  Both Sergeant Tangel and his platoon leader were wounded, the latter so seriously that he had to be evacuated.  Immediately assuming command of the platoon, Sergeant Tangel led an assault on the enemy-held area to clear an area for the rest of his company to land.  Sergeant Tangel repeatedly exposed himself to hostile fire in order to move from man to man and organize the attack.  His personal bravery and outstanding leadership in spearheading the attack resulted in the complete rout and annihilation of the enemy force.  Realizing his platoon’s need for a leader, Sergeant Tangel repeatedly refused medical evacuation for his wound and remained in command during the subsequent four days of operations.  Sergeant Tangel’s extraordinary heroism in close combat against a numerically superior Viet Cong force is in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon himself, the 9th Infantry Division and the United States Army.