The Secretary of the Navy takes
pleasure in presenting the
GUNNERY SERGEANT THELDON C. HORN
UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS
for service as set forth in the following
"For Meritorious achievement while serving as the Noncommissioned Officer in charge of the Quality Assurance Division of Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 364, Marine Aircraft Group Sixteen, First Marine Aircraft Wing in connection with combat operations against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam. On the evening of 1 September 1969, Gunnery Sergeant Horn was informed that a typhoon with winds averag- ing sixty-five knots was approaching the Quang Tri Air Base and was due to strike at daybreak the following morning. Immediately proceeding to the flight line, he began securing the CH-46 helicopters with tie downs and buttoned down all loose cowlings and hatches. In addition, he secured all loose gear such as spare rotor blades and ground support equipment and moved certain items of equipment to relatively safe areas. The following morning, Gunnery Sergeant Horn ignored the heavy rain as he quickly inspected the area to ensure that all was firmly secured. As the wind began to rise in tempo, he observed a broken nose wheel locking pin on one of his aircraft and rapidly sandbagged the nose gear to prevent it from being blown against the revetment. He then found that the rotorbrake on another CH-46 had failed, causing the forward head to spin rapidly in the wind. When two Marines were unsuccessful in the blades and the blades began droop and rotate close to the ground, Gunnery Sergeant Horn instructed the men to move to safety. Despite high winds, heavy rain, and slippery matting, he con- tinued his determined efforts to catch the blades until he finally managed to secure the blades by using a tie down from the aft rotor head. Throughout the day, he repeatedly disregarded his own safety as he placed sandbag around aircraft landing gears to prevent the helicopters from turning or sliding and took all other necessary action to safeguard his aircraft until the winds subsided. By his professionalism, bold initiative, and unwavering devotion to duty at great personal risk, Gunnery Sergeant Horn prevented extensive damage to his aircraft and upheld the finest traditions of the Marine Corps and of the United States Naval Service."
The Combat Distinguishing Device is authorized.
FOR THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY,
/S/ Wm K. Jones
LIEUTENANT GENERAL, U.S. MARINE CORPS
COMMANDING GENERAL, FLEET MARINE FORCE, PACIFIC
GySgt. Theldon C. Horn's History Index