December 03, 2019 3 min read

As we’ve written before at CIVVIESUPPLY, our customers are our heroes. Steve B. is one of them. In response to our last MOH recipient post about LTC Don Faith, Steve kindly replied back to us with this email: “My life was saved on 3 December 1968 by a man named John Holcomb. He was awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously for his actions that day, so I am acutely aware of our need for better heroes and what those heroes really look and act like. Thank you for sharing the story of LTC Faith and reminding us that the best of us often lie in far flung fields and sacrificed so we might learn what dedication to duty, honor, country really means.”

Today marks exactly 51 years since SGT John Holcomb saved Steve’s life, while also losing his own. I can’t overstate how moved I was as I read Steve’s email today, so I will simply reproduce it below. Folks, this is firsthand history — the true story of what happened one day in 1968, during the Vietnam War, when a man fought bravely and gave his life for his brothers in arms. Read Steve’s firsthand account below:

“I was the squad leader in the first squad, first platoon of Delta 2/7 51 years ago today. I was shot in the right leg at 1045 hours and that’s when John came to my rescue. I’d been manning an M60 machine gun from the vantage point of a tall ant hill on the NE side of the LZ. The NVA focused much of their fire on the 60 and an RPG slammed into it blowing the barrel off the gun. That left me with about 300 rounds of ammo and no way to fire it. When the machine gun fire ebbed, the bad guys got close enough to start shooting through the elephant grass. The bullet broke my right tibia. John ran across 50 meters of incredible fire to bring me another 60. He was shot four times across the chest and died behind that ant hill. The new gun allowed me to continue to repel ground attacks on our side of the LZ. Things continued to deteriorate for us though, as our support helicopter rockets started the elephant grass in fire. As it closed in on the ant hill I had to retreat back to the loose perimeter the surviving GIs had formed. I was shot again, again in the right leg about three inches from the first GSW. The second one peeled my kneecap back. I was hit three times with multiple fragment wounds from enemy mortar fire also. When the fire caught one of our wounded, I went out with another soldier to put the fire out with all I had left - my hands. That would later result in me losing all my finger nails. I spent the next four months in hospitals as the docs worked to save my leg. While I was at the 3rd Field Hospital in Saigon, I was asked if I saw any heroics that day. Much of what I was able to relate was in John’s citation.”

We’re grateful to Steve for his email, and we’re honored to feature his story and the story of SGT John Holcomb. Thousands of you have stories to share. What’s yours? We’d love to hear from you: brothers [at] civviesupply.com


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