Lance Corporal Paul L. Smith
service as set forth in the following citation:
“ For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as
a Squad Leader with Company I, Third Battalion, Fifth Marines, First Marine
Division in connection with combat operations against the enemy in the Republic
of Vietnam. On
11 September 1969, Company I was assaulting enemy positions in a tree line about
one mile west of the An Hoa Combat Base when the Marines came under intense
small arms, machine gun, and automatic weapons fire.
Fearlessly maneuvering his squad to within fifteen meters of the enemy
positions, Lance Corporal Smith directed his men to provide covering fire for an
adjacent squad which was moving into the tree line.
Although he and his squad members were pinned down by hostile fire, he
single handedly advanced toward an enemy machine gun position and, in the face
of a heavy volume of hostile fire, rushed the position, throwing grenades and
firing his rifle.
With his last hand grenade, Lance Corporal Smith killed two enemy
soldiers, then, as a third soldier approached the machine gun, he killed the
hostile soldier, utilizing the last of his rifle ammunition.
Quickly rearming himself with enemy grenades he found at the machine gun
position, Lance Corporal Smith valiantly moved into the tree line.
After silencing another hostile position and killing one more enemy
soldier with the enemy grenades, he led his squad through the tree line and
secured the left flank, enabling the Marines to overrun their objective.
His heroic and timely actions inspired all who observed him and were
instrumental in the defeat of the hostile force. By
his courage, aggressive fighting spirit and unwavering devotion to duty at great
personal risk, Lance Corporal Smith upheld the highest traditions of the Marine
Corps and the United States Naval Service.
GENERAL, U.S. MARINE CORPS
GENERAL, FLEET MARINE FORCE, PACIFIC