Medal of Honor
STUMPF, KENNETH E.
Rank and organization: Staff Sergeant (then Sp4c.), U.S. Army, Company C, 1st Battalion, 35th Infantry, 25th Infantry Division.
Place and date: Near Duc Pho, Republic of Vietnam, 25 April 1967.
Entered service at: Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Born: 28 September 1944, Neenah, Wisconsin.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. S/Sgt. Stumpf distinguished himself while serving as a squad leader of he 3d Platoon, Company C, on a search and destroy mission. As S/Sgt. Stumpf's company approached a village, it encountered a North Vietnamese rifle company occupying a well fortified bunker complex. During the initial contact, 3 men from his squad fell wounded in front of a hostile machinegun emplacement. The enemy's heavy volume of fire prevented the unit from moving to the aid of the injured men, but S/Sgt. Stumpf left his secure position in a deep trench and ran through the barrage of incoming rounds to reach his wounded comrades. He picked up 1 of the men and carried him back to the safety of the trench. Twice more S/Sgt. Stumpf dashed forward while the enemy turned automatic weapons and machineguns upon him, yet he managed to rescue the remaining 2 wounded squad members. He then organized his squad and led an assault against several enemy bunkers from which continuously heavy fire was being received He and his squad successfully eliminated 2 of the bunker positions, but one to the front of the advancing platoon remained a serious threat. Arming himself with extra hand grenades, S/Sgt. Stumpf ran over open ground, through a volley of fire directed at him by a determined enemy, toward the machinegun position. As he reached the bunker, he threw a hand grenade through the aperture. It was immediately returned by the occupants, forcing S/Sgt. Stumpf to take cover. Undaunted, he pulled the pins on 2 more grenades, held them for a few seconds after activation, then hurled them into the position, this time successfully destroying the emplacement. With the elimination of this key position, his unit was able to assault and overrun the enemy. S/Sgt. Stumpf's relentless spirit of aggressiveness, intrepidity, and ultimate concern for the lives of his men, are in the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself and the U.S. Army.
Staff Sergeant Kenneth E. Stumpf receiving the Medal of Honor from President Lyndon Baines Johnson. Photo taken on 19 September 1968.
Sergeant Major Kenneth E. Stumpf. Photo taken in the mid to late 1980's. This photo was given to his son Scott A. Stumpf when his son enlisted in the Army in 1989. The following inscription is written on the photo:
"Scott - The greatest honor is to serve your country as a soldier in the U. S. Army. Best of luck for future success and happiness".
Thanks to Scott A. Stumpf <email@example.com> for the above photos.
Kenneth Stumpf and his son SSG Scott Stumpf at the Veteran's Inaugural Ball, 20 January 2001
Thanks to Scott Stumpf for the photograph
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