The President of the United States
in the name of The Congress
takes pleasure in presenting the
Medal of Honor
*PETERSEN, DANNY J.
Rank and organization: Specialist Fourth
Class, U.S. Army, Company B, 4th Battalion, 23d Infantry, 25th Infantry Division. Place
and Date: Tay Ninh Province, Republic of Vietnam, 9 January 1970. Entered service
at: Kansas City, Mo. Born: 11 March 1949, Horton, Kans.
Sp4c. Petersen distinguished himself while serving as an armored personnel
carrier commander with Company B during a combat operation against a North Vietnamese Army
Force estimated to be of battalion size. During the initial contact with the enemy, an
armored personnel carrier was disabled and the crewmen were pinned down by the heavy
onslaught of enemy small arms, automatic weapons and rocket-propelled grenade fire. Sp4c.
Petersen immediately maneuvered his armored personnel carrier to a position between the
disabled vehicle and the enemy. He placed suppressive fire on the enemy's well-fortified
position, thereby enabling the crewmembers of the disabled personnel carrier to repair
their vehicle. He then maneuvered his vehicle, while still under heavy hostile fire to
within 10 feet of the enemy's defensive emplacement. After a period of intense fighting,
his vehicle received a direct hit and the driver was wounded. With extraordinary courage
and selfless disregard for his own safety, Sp4c. Petersen carried his wounded comrade 45
meters across the bullet-swept field to a secure area. He then voluntarily returned to his
disabled armored personnel carrier to provide covering fire for both the other vehicles
and the dismounted personnel of his platoon as they withdrew. Despite heavy fire from 3
sides, he remained with his disabled vehicle, alone and completely exposed. Sp4c. Petersen
was standing on top of his vehicle, firing his weapon, when he was mortally wounded. His
heroic and selfless actions prevented further loss of life in his platoon. Sp4c.
Petersen's conspicuous gallantry and extraordinary heroism are in the highest traditions
of the service and reflect great credit on him, his unit, and the U.S. Army.