Sergeant Thomas L Henning – USMC

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as a Squad Leader with Company C, Third Reconnaissance Battalion, Third Marine Division in connection with combat operations against an enemy in the Republic of Vietnam. On 1 June 1969, Sergeant Henning was a member of an eight man reconnaissance team which was helilifted into an abandoned fire support base on Mutter’s Ridge in Quang Tri Province to establish an observation post. During the early hours of the following morning, a hostile sapper unit launched a vicious assault upon the Marines and, utilizing grenades and satchel charges caused total casualties among the men. Although gravely wounded by fragments from the rocket propelled grenade rounds, Sergeant Henning ignored his painful injuries and immediately commenced firing light antitank assault weapons at the attackers and hurling grenades into their midst in a tenacious defense of his position. Fearlessly moving throughout the fire swept terrain, he shouted instructions to his men and skillfully directed their fire at the enemy. When a medical evacuation helicopter arrived. Sergeant Henning, with complete disregard for his painful wounds, carried two of the casualties to the aircraft and, alertly observing that the North Vietnamese Army unit was attempting a final assault, provided an effective base of suppressive fire while his companions boarded the helicopter. His bold initiative and timely actions inspired all who observed him and were instrumental in saving his fellow Marines from further serious injury or possible death. By his courage, aggressive fighting spirit and unwavering devotion to duty in the face of grave personal danger, Sergeant Henning contributed significantly to the defeat of the enemy attack and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.