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PAUL MITCHELL WILLIS

  • Wall Name:PAUL M WILLIS
  • Date of Birth:5/6/1949
  • Date of Casualty:5/2/1968
  • Home of Record:BERKELEY
  • County of Record:ST. LOUIS COUNTY
  • State:MO
  • Branch of Service:MARINE CORPS
  • Rank:PFC
  • Panel/Line:54E, 21
  • Casualty Province:QUANG TRI

PAUL LEONARD YOST

  • Wall Name:PAUL L YOST
  • Date of Birth:5/10/1941
  • Date of Casualty:5/2/1968
  • Home of Record:BIDWELL
  • County of Record:GALLIA COUNTY
  • State:OH
  • Branch of Service:ARMY
  • Rank:SGT
  • Panel/Line:54E, 22
  • Casualty Province:QUANG TRI

LEROY NORRIS WRIGHT


is honored on Panel 54E, Line 22 of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Leave a Remembrance

REMEMBRANCES

  • God Bless

    Posted on 1/4/17 - by Mike Beerbower srtbeer@yahoo.com
    God Bless you, SFC Wright. You are remembered and respected by this american today. Thank you for service and ultimate sacrifice for our country. I hope that God continues to hold your family in his love and grace.
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  • Distinguished Service Cross Citation

    Posted on 5/2/14 - by A Grateful Vietnam Vet

    Distinguished Service Cross

    Awarded for actions during the Vietnam War

    The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918 (amended by act of July 25, 1963), takes pride in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) to Sergeant First Class Leroy Norris Wright (ASN: RA-51032309), United States Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Command and Control (Central), Detachment B-56, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces. Sergeant First Class Wright distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 2 May 1968 as team leader of a twelve-man Special Forces/Vietnamese reconnaissance patrol on an operation in hostile territory. Shortly after landing, his team spotted three Viet Cong soldiers. Immediately leading his team in evasive maneuvers, Sergeant Wright attempted to continue his reconnoiter. When the team made light contact with the enemy and the mission was completely compromised, he moved the patrol to a landing zone and called for an extraction helicopter. Savage enemy automatic weapons and small arms fire was directed at the team by a numerically superior enemy force. Sergeant Wright deployed his troops in a tight defensive perimeter and called for air support. Then, braving a hail of enemy bullets, he maneuvered his men toward the approaching rescue ship. The aircraft was driven off by an intense hostile fusillade that killed one door gunner and wounded the other. Sergeant Wright was also wounded by the ravaging barrage, but he completely disregarded his personal welfare and exposed himself to the savage fire to lead his force to a more secure position. The determined attackers closed in on the team and showered hand grenades on its position. Seeing a grenade land near one of his men, Sergeant Wright shouted a warning and dove between the soldier and the enemy explosive, absorbing the bulk of the blast. He was killed while selflessly placing the safety of a fellow soldier above his own in the heat of battle. Sergeant First Class Wright's extraordinary heroism and devotion to duty, at the cost of his life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army.
    General Orders: Headquarters, U.S. Army, Vietnam, General Orders No. 2878 (June 17, 1969)

    Action Date: 2-May-68

    Service: Army

    Rank: Sergeant First Class

    Company: Command and Control (Central), Detachment B-56

    Regiment: 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne)

    Division: 1st Special Forces
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  • Remembering An American Hero

    Posted on 4/12/14 - by Curt Carter ccarter02@earthlink.net
    Dear SFC Leroy Norris Wright, sir

    As an American, I would like to thank you for your service and for your sacrifice made on behalf of our wonderful country. The youth of today could gain much by learning of heroes such as yourself, men and women whose courage and heart can never be questioned.

    May God allow you to read this, and may He allow me to someday shake your hand when I get to Heaven to personally thank you. May he also allow my father to find you and shake your hand now to say thank you; for America, and for those who love you.

    With respect, Sir

    Curt Carter
    MORE
  • Leroy Wright, Distinguished Service Cross, Killed During Roy Benavidez MOH Incident in Cambodia

    Posted on 10/4/10 - by Mark Byrd markbyrd@swbell.net
    Leroy Wright was the leader of a 12 man special operations recon team inserted secretly by helicopter into Northern Cambodia about 60 miles NW of Saigon. His mission was to capture an NVA truck and return with the truck to Vietnam with a load of Russian supplies to prove give physical proof that the Viet Cong were being supplied through Cambodia. brbrUnfortunately Wright's team was landed in the midst of a large force of hundreds of NVA regulars deployed in depth around their landing zone. They were compromised when their hiding place was discovered by two NVA soldiers. Lloyd Mousseau, assistant team leader killed these men sliently but a shot was fired by one of them alerting the other NVA in the vicinity. brbrWright requested permission for extraction but was ordered to continue the mission by his superiors in Vietnam. He followed his orders and moved towards his objective, but soon encountered a patrol of about 12 NVA. In a brief but noisy fight his team wiped out the NVA partrol without any casualties to the team. He then immediately called for emergency extraction and rushed the team to the planned pickup zone. brbrAt the pickup zone Wright encountered numerous NVA troops and became locked in a fire fight which killed or wounded all of his men. The emergency extraction force, a flight of four UH1C gunships, call sign Maddogs, and four UH1H slicks, call sign Greyhounds, soon approached the pickup zone but it was driven away by intense and accurate enemy fire that killed one crew member, Michael Criag, and wounded others.brbrOn the ground Wright moved about his beleagured team encouraging them and repositioning them to defend the extraction landing zone. While redeploying one group of his men he was hit by enemy fire and lost the use of his legs. Then two enemy grenades fell between him and his teammates, endangering them all. Wright threw one back at the enemy but only had time to roll his body onto the second grenade before it exploded lifting him into the air. Wright survived this explosion and fought on for a time firing his weapon until he was killed by a shot in his head. brbrMaster Sergeant Roy Benavidez was assigned to support duties at the camp from which Wright's team had been launched. Over the radio he head that the team was surrounded by hundreds of NVA, six team members were dead and the six survivors were all wounded. brbrBenavidez was a close friend of Leroy Wright and felt that he owed his life to Wright from an earlier incident in which Wright took great personal risk to save him. It may have been thoughts of this that inspired Benavidez to rush to join the second rescue effort by the already battered helicopter flight from the 240th Assualt Helicopter Company. Unfortunately, when Benavidez arrived at the scene his friend Leroy Wright had already been killed. brbrBenavidez ultimately received the Medal of Honor for his actions on that day. He never spoke of the incident without praising the valor of those who were there. He particularly praised Wright's valor and leadership of the team.brbrLeroy Wright gave his life unselfishly in a desperate attempt to protect several team mates who happened to be indiginous mountain tribesmen and an ARVN interpretor, from the blast of a grenade. Some have asked why Wright was not awarded the Medal of Honor for this particular self sacrifical act. The officials writing his citation for the Distinguished Service Cross were apparently not aware of Wright's action, rolling onto the grenade to save his comrades! The only surviving American witness on the ground was Wright's raido operator, Brian O'Connor. His eyewitness account did not come to official attention until many years after the event. brbrI became aware of Leroy Wright's valor while researching a project to create a memorial honoring Roy Benavidez, Leroy Wright and the members of his team, and the members of the 240th AHC which fought so valiently to rescue or return the team. brbrTo do justice to this project we need information about Leroy Wright and his family. Wright left a widow with two small sons and we wish to communicate with them about his valor. We plan to preserve not just an image of Leroy Wright in the memorial, but also his personal history so that the legacy of his valor will never be forgotten. brbrAll information received will by archived and published by Valor Remembered Foundation, a not for profit charity that is teamed with friends of Roy Benavidez family for the creation of this living memorial project.
    MORE
  • We Remember

    Posted on 6/27/10 - by Robert Sage rsage@austin.rr.com
    Leroy is buried at Monmouth Memorial Park in Neptune, NJ. DSC PH
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The Wall of Faces

Brought to you by the organization that built The Wall, the Vietnam Veterans Virtual Memorial Wall is dedicated to honoring, remembering and sharing the legacies of all those who died in the Vietnam War. Here you can go beyond the names on The Wall to see the faces, share the stories and read the remembrances posted by friends, neighbors, classmates and family members.

All of these photos will be showcased in The Education Center at The Wall on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. To learn more about the effort to collect these photos and ensure their faces will never be forgotten, visit www.buildthecenter.org.