Sp4c George Alan Ingalls, U.S. Army, Medal of Honor, Vietnam War

 

Sp4c George Alan Ingalls, U.S. Army, Medal of Honor, Vietnam War
Sp4c George Alan Ingalls, U.S. Army, Medal of Honor, Vietnam War

BY DUANE A. VACHON, PH.D.  George Alan Ingalls (March 9, 1946 – April 16, 1967) was a United States Army soldier and a recipient of the United States military’s highest decoration—the Medal of Honor—for his actions in the Vietnam War.

 

Ingalls joined the Army from Los Angeles, California in 1966  and by April 16, 1967 was serving as a specialist four in Company A, 2d Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile). On that day, near Duc Pho in the Republic of Vietnam, Ingalls smothered the blast of an enemy-thrown hand grenade with his body, sacrificing his life to protect those around him.

 

Ingalls was a Specialist Fourth Class with the U.S. Army, Company A, 2d Battalion, 5th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile) and was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism at Duc Pho, Republic of Vietnam, April 16, 1967. His official CMOH citation reads as follows: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sp4c. Ingalls, a member of Company A, accompanied his squad on a night ambush mission. Shortly after the ambush was established, an enemy soldier entered the killing zone and was shot when he tried to evade capture. Other enemy soldiers were expected to enter the area, and the ambush was maintained in the same location. Two quiet ours passed without incident, then suddenly a handgrenade was thrown from the nearby dense undergrowth into the center of the squad’s position. The grenade did not explode, but shortly thereafter a second grenade landed directly between Sp4c. Ingalls and a nearby comrade. Although he could have jumped to a safe position, Sp4c. Ingalls, in a spontaneous act of great courage, threw himself on the grenade and absorbed its full blast. The explosion mortally wounded Sp4c. Ingalls, but his heroic action saved the lives of the remaining members of his squad. His gallantry and selfless devotion to his comrades are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon Sp4c. Ingalls, his unit, and the U.S. Army.

  Before we look at Ingall’s Medal of Honor citation I thought it might be interesting to look at the history of the Medal of Honor .

 

MEDAL OF HONOR

 

The Medal of Honor is the highest medal awarded by the United States.  The following is an excerpt from Army Regulation 600-8-22 (Military Awards) that describes the eligibility criteria for the award of the Medal of Honor.

The Medal of Honor [Army], section 3741 title 10, United States Code (10 USC 3741), was established by Joint Resolution of Congress, 12 July 1862 (amended by acts 9 July 1918 and 25 July 1963).

The Medal of Honor is awarded by the President, in the name of Congress, to a person who, while a member of the Army, distinguishes himself or herself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his or her life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in action against an enemy of the United States; while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.  The deed performed must have been one of personal bravery or self-sacrifice so conspicuous as to clearly distinguish the individual above his or her comrades and must have involved risk of life.  Incontestable proof of the performance of the service will be exacted and each recommendation for the award of this decoration will be considered on the standard of extraordinary merit.

 

MEDAL

medal_of_honor1 Army 9Mar14

DESCRIPTION: A gold five pointed star, each point tipped with trefoils, 1 ½ inches wide, surrounded by a green laurel wreath and suspended from a gold bar inscribed “VALOR”, surmounted by an eagle.  In the center of the star, Minerva’s head surrounded by the words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.”  On each ray of the star is a green oak leaf.  On the reverse is a bar engraved “THE CONGRESS TO” with a space for engraving the name of the recipient.

RIBBON 

moh ribbon army 4Sep2014

RIBBON: The medal is suspended by a neck ribbon, 1 3/8 inches wide, Bluebird 67117.  A shield of the same color ribbon with thirteen White (67101) stars, arranged in the form of three chevrons is above the medal.  The service ribbon is 1 3/8 inches wide with five White stars in the form of a “M”.

MEDAL OF HONOR FLAG

medal of honor flag army image 4Sep2014

DESCRIPTION: A light blue flag with gold fringe bearing thirteen white stars in a configuration as on the Medal of Honor ribbon. 

SYMBOLISM: The light blue color and white stars are adapted from the Medal of Honor ribbon.  The flag commemorates the sacrifice and blood shed for our freedoms and gives emphasis to the Medal of Honor being the highest award for valor by an individual serving in the Armed Forces of the United States. 

BACKGROUND: Public Law 107-248, Section 8143, legislated the creation of a Medal of Honor Flag for presentation to each person to whom a Medal of Honor is awarded after the date of the enactment, October 23, 2002.   A panel of eight members made of representatives from each Service (Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard), one Office of Secretary Defense staff, one historian and one representative from the Medal of Honor Society was formed to review and evaluate all designs submitted and make a final recommendation to the Principal Deputy to the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness.   On 15 December, 2004, the design submitted by Ms. Sarah LeClerc, Illustrator at The Institute of H

Medal of Honor citation[

Specialist Ingalls’ official Medal of Honor citation reads:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sp4 Ingalls, a member of Company A, accompanied his squad on a night ambush mission. Shortly after the ambush was established, an enemy soldier entered the killing zone and was shot when he tried to evade capture. Other enemy soldiers were expected to enter the area, and the ambush was maintained in the same location. Two quiet hours passed without incident, then suddenly a hand grenade was thrown from the nearby dense undergrowth into the center of the squad’s position. The grenade did not explode, but shortly thereafter a second grenade landed directly between Sp4 Ingalls and a nearby comrade. Although he could have jumped to a safe position, Sp4 Ingalls, in a spontaneous act of great courage, threw himself on the grenade and absorbed its full blast. The explosion mortally wounded Sp4 Ingalls, but his heroic action saved the lives of the remaining members of his squad. His gallantry and selfless devotion to his comrades are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflects great credit upon Sp4 Ingalls, his unit, and the U.S. Army

Sp4c George Alan Ingalls is buried at Pierce Brothers Crestlawn Memorial Park & Mortuary, Riverside, Riverside County, California, USA. Plot: Vesperland sect

 Sp4c George Alan Ingalls is buried at Pierce Brothers Crestlawn Memorial Park & Mortuary, Riverside, Riverside County, California, USA. Plot: Vesperland section, grave A-620.

The information in this article was sourced from a variety of sources both internal and external. Every effort was made to ensure that the information is current and correct. These articles are presented to honor the heroes they are written about.

 ————————————————————————————————-

If you can read this, thank a teacher. If you can read this in English, thank a veteran.

 

 

Comments

comments