The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting a gold star in lieu of the second DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS to
FIRST LIEUTENANT JACOB L. LARUE
UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS RESERVE
for service as set forth in the following
"For heroism and extraordinary achievement in aerial flight while serving as a Pilot with 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 6 March 1969, First Lieutenant Larue launched as Wingman in a flight of two CH-46 transport helicopters assigned to insert one reconnaissance team into the Elephant Valley area and extract another team. The replacement team was aboard the lead air- craft and both transport helicopters were being escorted by two UH-1E gun- ships. As the lead aircraft approached the zone, it came under intense hostile automatic weapons fire and was struck several times. Due to the tactical situ- ation on the ground, the Section Leader waved off. Realizing that the team on the ground was surrounded by the enemy, and would require an emergency extraction, First Lieutenant Larue unhesitatingly volunteered to attempt the extraction, although the zone was unsuitable for helicopter landing. With com- plete disregard for his own safety, he skillfully maneuvered his aircraft into a hover close to the ground, and ignoring the heavy volume of hostile fire directed at his helicopter, he steadfastly held his dangerous position until all eight Marines were safely aboard, then departed the hazardous area while still under enemy fire. As a result of his resolute determination and superior airmanship, the team members were successfully transported to their base. First Lieutenant Larue's courage, superb aeronautical ability and unwavering devotion to duty in the face of great personal danger were in keeping with the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and of the United States Naval Service."
FOR THE PRESIDENT
/S/ H. W. Buse, Jr.
H. W. BUSE, JR.
Crew of YK-11
|1stLt. Jacob L. LaRue||Pilot|
|Capt. Richard L. Bianchino||Copilot|
|Cpl. James H. Bandish||Crew Chief|
|LCpl. Jerome T. Meyers||Gunner|
|Sgt. Ivan L. Sage||Gunner|
After Action Report
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