Retired Army Col. Robert L. Howard
signs a copy of his citation of the Medal of Honor for a soldier at the Morale, Welfare and Recreation building at Al Asad, Iraq, April 20 speaks to U.S. Marines, Soldiers, and Sailors at the Chapel of Hope on Camp Fallujah, Iraq, April 21, 2006. Howard received the Medal of Honor March 12, 1968, for his gallant and intrepid actions in the Vietnam War. Leaving his helicopter landing zone and moving out to rescue a missing American soldier, his platoon came under attack by a two-company force. During the initial engagement, he was wounded and a grenade destroyed his weapon. Unable to walk, and seeing his platoon leader wounded, Howard crawled to his leader’s aid. After dragging the seriously wounded officer back to the platoon area, Howard was able to rally the disorganized platoon and direct their fire upon the encircling enemy with shouts of encouragement. For three and a half hours, his small force repulsed enemy attacks enough to give rescue helicopters a chance to land. He personally supervised the loading of his men and would not leave the bullet-swept landing zone until all of his soldiers were aboard the helicopters safely.
UPDATE 122409: He came to TQ a year later. I saw him in the Mainside DFAC. RIP, sir.