Medal of Honor

 

 

LAUFFER, BILLY LANE *

 

Rank and organization. Private First Class, U.S. Army, Company C, 2d Battalion, 5th Cavalry, 1st Air Cavalry Division

 

Place and date: Near Bon Son in Binh Dinh Province, Republic of Vietnam, 21 September 1966

 

Entered service at: Phoenix, Arizona

 

Born: 20 October 1945, Murray, Kentucky

 

Citation:

 

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Pfc. Lauffer's squad, a part of Company C, was suddenly struck at close range by an intense machine gun crossfire from 2 concealed bunkers astride the squad's route. Pfc. Lauffer, the second man in the column, saw the lead man fall and noted that the remainder of the squad was unable to move. 2 comrades, previously wounded and being carried on litters, were lying helpless in the beaten zone of the enemy fire. Reacting instinctively, Pfc. Lauffer quickly engaged both bunkers with fire from his rifle, but when the other squad members attempted to maneuver under his covering fire, the enemy fusillade increased in volume and thwarted every attempt to move. Seeing this and his wounded comrades helpless in the open, Pfc. Lauffer rose to his feet and charged the enemy machine gun positions, firing his weapon and drawing the enemy's attention. Keeping the enemy confused and off balance, his 1-man assault provided the crucial moments for the wounded point man to crawl to a covered position, the squad to move the exposed litter patients to safety, and his comrades to gain more advantageous positions. Pfc. Lauffer was fatally wounded during his selfless act of courage and devotion to his fellow soldiers. His gallantry at the cost of his life served as an inspiration to his comrades and saved the lives of an untold number of his companions. His actions are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.



--- General / Personal ---

Last name: LAUFFER

First name: BILLY LANE

Home of Record (official): TUCSON

State (official): AZ

Date of Birth: Saturday, October 20, 1945

Sex: Male

Race: Caucasian

Marital Status: Single

 

--- Military ---

Branch: Army

Rank: PFC

Serial Number: 19748034

Component: Regular

Pay grade: E3

MOS (Military Occupational Specialty code): 11B20

 

--- Action ---

Start of Tour: Thursday, September 15, 1966

Date of Casualty: Wednesday, September 21, 1966

Age at time of loss: 20

Casualty type: (A1) Hostile, died

Reason: Multiple fragmentation wounds (Ground casualty)

Country: South VietNam

Province: Unknown/Not Reported

The Wall: Panel 10E - Row 129

 


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