The President of the United States
in the name of The Congress
takes pleasure in presenting the
Medal of Honor
PATTERSON, ROBERT MARTIN
Rank and organization: Sergeant, U.S.
Army, Troop B, 2d Squadron. 17th Cavalry. Place and date: Near La Chu, Republic
of Vietnam, 6 May 1968. Entered service at: Raleigh, N.C. Born: 16 April
1948, Durham, N.C.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and
beyond the call of duty. Sgt. Patterson (then Sp4c.) distinguished himself while serving
as a fire team leader of the 3d Platoon, Troop B, during an assault against a North
Vietnamese Army battalion which was entrenched in a heavily fortified position. When the
leading squad of the 3d Platoon was pinned down by heavy interlocking automatic weapon and
rocket propelled grenade fire from 2 enemy bunkers, Sgt. Patterson and the 2 other members
of his assault team moved forward under a hail of enemy fire to destroy the bunkers with
grenade and machinegun fire. Observing that his comrades were being fired on from a third
enemy bunker covered by enemy gunners in l-man spider holes, Sgt. Patterson, with complete
disregard for his safety and ignoring the warning of his comrades that he was moving into
a bunker complex, assaulted and destroyed the position. Although exposed to intensive
small arm and grenade fire from the bunkers and their mutually supporting emplacements.
Sgt. Patterson continued his assault upon the bunkers which were impeding the advance of
his unit. Sgt. Patterson single-handedly destroyed by rifle and grenade fire 5 enemy
bunkers, killed 8 enemy soldiers and captured 7 weapons. His dauntless courage and heroism
inspired his platoon to resume the attack and to penetrate the enemy defensive position.
Sgt. Patterson's action at the risk of his life has reflected great credit upon himself,
his unit, and the U.S. Army.