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The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the SILVER STAR Medal to

LANCE CORPORAL THOMAS R. THUESEN
UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS

 

for service as set forth in the following CITATION:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as a Machine Gunner with Company M. Third Battalion, Twenty-Seventh Marines, First Marine Division in connection with operations against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam. On 18 May 1968 during Operation Allen Brook, Lance Corporal THUESEN's platoon was moving to reinforce other units operating in the vicinity of Le Bac (2) in Quang Nam Province when the platoon came under intense small arms and automatic weapons fire from a well camouflaged, entrenched North Vietnamese Army force, wounding several Marines. Rapidly assessing the situation, Lance Corporal THUESEN moved to a position where he began delivering a heavy volume of suppressive fire, enabling several of the casualties to be treated and evacuated from the hazardous area. When his ammunition was expended, he ignored the hostile fire and moved to another position where ammunition was located and then resumed firing until his resupply of ammunition was expended. Realizing the serious condition of the wounded and their urgent need for medical care, he crawled across the fire-swept area, obtained a medical 'Kit and additional personnel and ammunition and guided a small relief force back to his position. Repeatedly exposing himself to the North Vietnamese fire, he completely disregarded his own safety as he moved to positions to deliver more effective fire. When his weapon malfunctioned, he remained exposed to hostile fire as he dismantled the machine gun, cleared the malfunction, reassembled the weapon and resumed firing. After a second malfunction, he ran across the fire-swept area where he obtained another weapon and continued to bring accurate fire to bear against the enemy. Although he had been moving constantly in the intense heat throughout the five hour battle, he refused to withdraw until all the casualties had been evacuated. When his platoon was ordered to break contact, he provided covering fire until the withdrawal was completed. By his courage, aggressive fighting spirit and selfless devotion to duty in the face of great personal risk, Lance Corporal THUESEN inspired all who observed him and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and of the United States Naval Service.