Tag Archive: Tango Mike Mike


Honor at Last for Roy P Benavidez

 

“I did this as a way to honor all those who have struggled to come back from serving our country in times of war. The most interesting part for me was something I didn’t find out until after I created this photoplay, was that this was Roy’s second tour. He had been so gravely wounded, by stepping on a landmine, on his first tour that he was drummed out of the Army after returning. Roy built his body back up and returned to the service after proving himself fit and joined the elite Green Beret’s and went back to Vietnam for a second tour for which he received the Medal of Honor.”

MSG Roy Benavidez speech 1991

 

Army Medal of Honor

Memorial to Roy P Benavidez

Rank: Master Sergeant
Organization: U.S. Army
Company: Detachment B-56
Division: 5th Special Forces Group
Born: 5 August 1935, DeWitt County, Cuero, Texas
Departed: Yes
Entered Service At: Houston, Texas June 1955
G.O. Number:
Date of Issue:
Accredited To:
Place / Date: West of Loc Ninh on 2 May 1968

Citation

” Master Sergeant (then Staff Sergeant) Roy P. Benavidez United States Army, who distinguished himself by a series of daring and extremely valorous actions on 2 May 1968 while assigned to Detachment B56, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces, Republic of Vietnam. On the morning of 2 May 1968, a 12-man Special Forces Reconnaissance Team was inserted by helicopters in a dense jungle area west of Loc Ninh, Vietnam to gather intelligence information about confirmed large-scale enemy activity. This area was controlled and routinely patrolled by the North Vietnamese Army. After a short period of time on the ground, the team met heavy enemy resistance, and requested emergency extraction. Three helicopters attempted extraction, but were unable to land due to intense enemy small arms and anti-aircraft fire. Sergeant Benavidez was at the Forward Operating Base in Loc Ninh monitoring the operation by radio when these helicopters returned to off-load wounded crewmembers and to assess aircraft damage. Sergeant Benavidez voluntarily boarded a returning aircraft to assist in another extraction attempt. Realizing that all the team members were either dead or wounded and unable to move to the pickup zone, he directed the aircraft to a nearby clearing where he jumped from the hovering helicopter, and ran approximately 75 meters under withering small arms fire to the crippled team. Prior to reaching the team’s position he was wounded in his right leg, face, and head. Despite these painful injuries, he took charge, repositioning the team members and directing their fire to facilitate the landing of an extraction aircraft, and the loading of wounded and dead team members. He then threw smoke canisters to direct the aircraft to the team’s position. Despite his severe wounds and under intense enemy fire, he carried and dragged half of the wounded team members to the awaiting aircraft. He then provided protective fire by running alongside the aircraft as it moved to pick up the remaining team members. As the enemy’s fire intensified, he hurried to recover the body and classified documents on the dead team leader. When he reached the leader’s body, Sergeant Benavidez was severely wounded by small arms fire in the abdomen and grenade fragments in his back. At nearly the same moment, the aircraft pilot was mortally wounded, and his helicopter crashed. Although in extremely critical condition due to his multiple wounds, Sergeant Benavidez secured the classified documents and made his way back to the wreckage, where he aided the wounded out of the overturned aircraft, and gathered the stunned survivors into a defensive perimeter. Under increasing enemy automatic weapons and grenade fire, he moved around the perimeter distributing water and ammunition to his weary men, reinstilling in them a will to live and fight. Facing a buildup of enemy opposition with a beleaguered team, Sergeant Benavidez mustered his strength, began calling in tactical air strikes and directed the fire from supporting gunships to suppress the enemy’s fire and so permit another extraction attempt. He was wounded again in his thigh by small arms fire while administering first aid to a wounded team member just before another extraction helicopter was able to land. His indomitable spirit kept him going as he began to ferry his comrades to the craft. On his second trip with the wounded, he was clubbed from additional wounds to his head and arms before killing his adversary. He then continued under devastating fire to carry the wounded to the helicopter. Upon reaching the aircraft, he spotted and killed two enemy soldiers who were rushing the craft from an angle that prevented the aircraft door gunner from firing upon them. With little strength remaining, he made one last trip to the perimeter to ensure that all classified material had been collected or destroyed, and to bring in the remaining wounded. Only then, in extremely serious condition from numerous wounds and loss of blood, did he allow himself to be pulled into the extraction aircraft. Sergeant Benavidez’ gallant choice to join voluntarily his comrades who were in critical straits, to expose himself constantly to withering enemy fire, and his refusal to be stopped despite numerous severe wounds, saved the lives of at least eight men. His fearless personal leadership, tenacious devotion to duty, and extremely valorous actions in the face of overwhelming odds were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service, and reflect the utmost credit on him and the United States Army. “

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… (That Mean Mexican)

 

A stirring tribute to an incredible man from The Founders Blog . Read the whole thing and rejoice that America creates such men .

MSG Roy Benavidez - Medal Of Honor Ceremony

 

  ” As the medevac chopper landed the wounded were examined one by one. Staff Sergeant Benavidez could only hear what was going on around him. He had over thirty seven puncture wounds. His intestines were exposed. He could not see as his eyes were caked in blood and unable to open. Neither could he speak, his jaw broken, clubbed by a North Vietnamese rifle. But he knew what was happening, and it was the scariest moment of his life, even more so than the earlier events of the day. He lay in a body bag, bathed in his own blood. Jerry Cottingham, a friend screamed “That’s Benavidez. Get a doc”. When the doctor arrived he placed his hand on Roy’s chest to feel for a heartbeat. He pronounced him dead. The physician shook his head. “There’s nothing I can do for him.” As the doctor bent over to zip up the body bag. Benavidez did the only thing he could think of to let the doctor know that he was alive. He spit in the doctor’s face. The surprised doctor reversed Roy’s condition from dead to “He won’t make it, but we’ll try”.

 

The 32-year-old son of a Texas sharecropper had just performed for six hours one of the most remarkable feats of the Vietnam War. Benavidez, part Yaqui Indian and part Mexican, was a seventh-grade dropout and an orphan who grew up taunted by the term “dumb Mexican.” But, as Ronald Reagan noted, if the story of what he accomplished was made into a movie, no one would believe it really happened.

 

Roy Benavidez’s ordeal began at Loc Ninh, a Green Beret outpost near the Cambodian border. It was 1:30 p.m., May 2, 1968. A chaplain was holding a prayer service around a jeep for the sergeant and several other soldiers. Suddenly, shouts rang out from a nearby short-wave radio. “Get us out of here!” someone screamed. “For God’s sake, get us out!” “

 

Army Medal of Honor

 

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