Vietnam Medal of Honor Heroes

Edward F. Murphy, Author
Edward F. Murphy, Author Ballantine Books $19 (308p) ISBN 978-0-345-33890-7
Reviewed on: 06/26/1987
Release date: 07/01/1987
The founder of the Medal of Honor Historical Society, Vietnam veteran Murphy offers biographies of 125 of the 238 Medal winners who served during the Vietnam era. Based on ""terse and often dry'' official citations as well as other government documents, media reporting and interviews with the survivors, their families and their fellow soldiers, Murphy's accounts of the heroics that led to their being honored are vivid and gut-wrenching. Many recipients, like Cpl. William T. Perkins (the only combat photographer to earn the Medal), threw themselves on enemy grenades to save others. When Second Lt. John P. Bobo's right leg was blown off by a mortar explosion, he wrapped his belt around the damaged limb and stayed on the firing line, covering the withdrawal of his command group until he was cut down. The tales are arranged chronologically, intercut with a summary of major events in the war. Vietnam literature has produced better writing, yet this book generates an effect similar to the Vietnam Veteran's Memorial in Washington: the reader cannot remain unmoved. (July)
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