Distinguished Service Cross



Specialist 4

Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion, 12th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile)

4 November 1965

Republic of Vietnam

For extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations against an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam:

On 4 November 1965, Specialist Tillquist, a medical corpsman attached to Company B, 2nd Battalion, 12th Cavalry, 1st Cavalry Division, was accompanying Company B on a search and destroy mission near Plei Me, Republic of Vietnam. As the lead platoon hacked its way through the dense Vietnamese jungle growth, they suddenly came upon a well-fortified Viet Cong emplacement, whereupon the point man immediately opened fire on the insurgent position. As the remainder of the company reached the area, they began a full scale assault on the hostile position. In what seemed to be a final defensive effort on the part of the insurgents, they steadily increased  their fire on the advancing group. During this affray, a member of the friendly attacking force was wounded. A cry for a "medic" was heard, and Specialist Tillquist, who was in the front line of the assault, immediately gathered his medical equipment; went to the aid of the wounded man; administered first aid; and moved him to a better sheltered position, some thirty meters from the main line of fire. After securing his patient, he noticed that another of his comrades was wounded and lying in the midst of hostile fire. With complete disregard for his own personal safety, he charged through the intense hostile barrage to the aid of the wounded man and again administered first aid, moving his comrade to a safer position. As he secured the second man, he saw another of his comrades fall wounded, directly in front of a Viet Cong machine gun emplacement. Despite being almost completely exhausted and disregarding his own personal safety, Specialist Tillquist stripped off his web gear; grabbed his rifle and aid kit; and began to crawl to the aid of the wounded man.  During this valiant attempt, he was mortally wounded when hit in the back by a burst of fire from the hostile machine gun. Specialist Tillquist's extraordinary heroism, compassion for his fellow man, and supreme sacrifice were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Army and reflect great credit upon himself and the military service.

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