Navy Cross

Campbell, Joseph T.

For extraordinary heroism while serving as Executive Officer of Company I, Third Battalion, Fifth Marines, First Marine Division, in connection with operations in the Republic of Vietnam.  On 15 June 1968 during operation MAMELUKE THRUST  in Quang Nam Province, Company I became heavily engaged with a large enemy force and sustained several casualties.  As the company prepared to evacuate its wounded, an artillery round impacted nearby, killing the company commander, a platoon commander, and the company gunnery sergeant.  Although seriously wounded by fragments, Lieutenant Campbell realized that he was his unit's only remaining officer and refused medical aid in order to assume command of the company.  Despite his weakened condition due to the loss of blood, he ensured that a landing zone was secured and selflessly directed the evacuation of the other casualties.  When the medical evacuation helicopter arrived and immediately came under intense enemy ground fire, Lieutenant Campbell fearlessly moved among his men to direct suppressive fire on the hostile positions, enabling the helicopter to extract the casualties.  Ignoring his weakened condition, he directed a second helicopter into the zone to complete the emergency medical evacuation.  He subsequently succumbed to his wounds before he could be evacuated.  By his courage, inspiring leadership, and selfless devotion to duty despite the severity of his wounds, Lieutenant Campbell undoubtedly saved the lives of numerous Marines and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and of the United States Naval Service.  He gallantly gave his life for his country.