Medal of Honor
Presentation:To his family at the White House
By President Richard M. Nixon - April 7, 1970
Buried at: Fort Denaud Cemetery - Fort Denaud, Florida
CUTINHA, NICHOLAS J. *
Rank and organization: Specialist Fourth Class, U.S. Army, Company C, 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division
Place and date: Near Gia Dinh, Republic of Vietnam, 2 March 1968
Entered service at: Coral Gables, Florida
Born: 13 January, 1945, Fernandina Beach, Florida
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. While serving as a machine gunner with Company C, Sp4c. Cutinha accompanied his unit on a combat mission near Gia Dinh. Suddenly his company came under small arms, automatic weapons, mortar and rocket propelled grenade fire, from a battalion size enemy unit. During the initial hostile attack, communication with the battalion was lost and the company commander and numerous members of the company became casualties. When Sp4c. Cutinha observed that his company was pinned down and disorganized, he moved to the front with complete disregard for his safety, firing his machine gun at the charging enemy. As he moved forward he drew fire on his own position and was seriously wounded in the leg. As the hostile fire intensified and half of the company was killed or wounded, Sp4c. Cutinha assumed command of all the survivors in his area and initiated a withdrawal while providing covering fire for the evacuation of the wounded. He killed several enemy soldiers but sustained another leg wound when his machine gun was destroyed by incoming rounds. Undaunted, he crawled through a hail of enemy fire to an operable machine gun in order to continue the defense of his injured comrades who were being administered medical treatment. Sp4c. Cutinha maintained this position, refused assistance, and provided defensive fire for his comrades until he fell mortally wounded. He was solely responsible for killing 15 enemy soldiers while saving the lives of at least 9 members of his own unit. Sp4c. Cutinha's gallantry and extraordinary heroism were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.
Nicholas J. Cutinha at Katum Base Camp near Black Virgin Mountain
Nicholas J. Cutinha, in the middle, with some friends.
Thanks to Mitchell (Wayne) Holloway for providing the above two photographs of Nicholas J. Cutinha.
He writes on 1 October 2000:
First let me start by saying that I appreciate what you're doing with this website. It is immensely valuable to those of us who served in Vietnam, as well as to those interested in the history of the Vietnam War.
I have attached two pictures of Nicholas (Porky) Cutinha which I took at the Katum Base Camp near the Black Virgin Mountain. I had the pleasure of getting to know him in the last few weeks of his life.
Your are welcomed to use any of this material on your great site, as you wish.
Mitchell (Wayne) Holloway
4333 7th Avenue
Marianna, FL 32446
--- General / Personal ---
Last name: CUTINHA
First name: NICHOLAS JOSEPH
Home of Record (official): ALVA
State (official): Florida
Date of Birth: Saturday, January 13, 1945
Marital Status: Single
--- Military ---
Serial Number: 53579467
Component: Selective Service
Pay grade: E4
MOS (Military Occupational Specialty code): 11B10
--- Action ---
Start of Tour: Friday, October 20, 1967
Date of Casualty: Saturday, March 2, 1968
Age at time of loss: 23
Casualty type: (A1) Hostile, died
Reason: Gun, small arms fire (Ground casualty)
Country: South VietNam
Province: Gia Dinh
The Wall: Panel 42E - Row 030
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