The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the DISTINGUISHED FLYING CROSS to
SERGEANT RICHARD D. McREYNOLDS
UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS
for service as set forth in the following
"For heroism and extraordinary achievement in aerial flight while serving with Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 364, Marine Aircraft Group Sixteen, First Marine Aircraft Wing in connection with combat opera- tions against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam. On the morning of 17 November 1969, Sergeant McReynolds launched as an Aerial Gunner aboard the lead aircraft in a flight of two CH-46 transport helicopters assigned the emer- gency medical evacuation of casualties from a Second Republic of Korea Marine Brigade unit which was operating eighteen miles southwest of DaNang. Arriving over the designated area, he was informed that the friendly unit was under intense enemy rocket, mortar, and automatic weapons fire and that the number of wounded Koreans had risen to seven with four requiring immediate extrac- tion. While his flight coordinated its approach with the fire supporting gunships and the screening smoke laid down by an OV-10 aircraft, Sergeant McReynolds, undaunted by the heavy volume of hostile fire directed at his helicopter, reso- lutely manned his weapon and alertly scanned the terrain to locate the sources of enemy fire while his CH-46 was maneuvered to a landing in the fire-swept area. As the helicopter touched down, it came under an extremely heavy volume of concentrated hostile fire and Sergeant McReynolds was seriously wounded. Despite the excruciating pain of his multiple wounds, he twice pulled himself into position behind his machine gun only to be placed back on the floor by the other aerial gunner. After his third attempt to regain his position behind his weapon in order to return fire and afford his CH-46 some measure of relief from the intense enemy fire, Sergeant McReynolds fell to the floor unconscious. He was subsequently transported to the medical facility at Marble Mountain. Sergeant McReynolds' courage, resolute determination, and unwavering devo- tion to duty in the face of great personal danger inspired all who observed him and 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.
A related Citation to this incident.
1stLt. Donald V. Esmond's Silver Star
Citation provided by:
Franklin A. Gulledge, Jr., Major USMC (Ret) and,
Awards Branch, Headquarters, United States Marine Corps
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