GREEN BERETS Stewart, Jack Thomas

The Giant Killer
By David A. Yuzuk & Neil L. Yuzuk

John Robertson

Staff member
Jack Thomas
  • UNIT
5 SF Group (Company A,Det A-302)
  • RANK
Distinguished Service Cross
South Vietnam 1967
awarded 2009
MIA - see Roll of Honour



Distinguished Service Cross : The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress July 9, 1918, takes pride in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) to Major (Infantry), [then Captain] Jack Thomas Stewart, United States Army, for extraordinary heroism in action against the enemy while serving with Operational Detachment Alpha-302 (ODA-302), Company A, 5th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 1st Special Forces, during combat operations in the Republic of Vietnam on 24 March 1967. Major Stewart's Mike Force element was surrounded and savagely attacked by two North Vietnamese Army battalions. Equipped only with individual small arms, the Mike Force was unable to obtain fire superiority. Major Stewart formed a defensive perimeter s the enemy launched human wave assaults and raked the Mike Force with small arms and mortar fire. Major Stewart repeatedly exposed himself to withering enemy fire and direct assault as he calmly moved about the maelstrom rallying his troops. While attempting to coordinate an air strike, Major Stewart was wounded by enemy fire and his radio was destroyed. Unable to communicate with friendly air support, the Mike Force began to take friendly fire from tactical support aircraft. Recognizing the untenable situation, Major Stewart attempted to lead a withdrawal, but was thwarted by fierce enemy fire. Facing the probable annihilation of his unit, Major Stewart sacrificed himself to certain capture or death by taking up an exposed position and covering the withdrawal of as many of his troops as possible. Major Stewart's undaunted courage and steadfast regard for his men at the cost of his life are in keeping with the highest traditions of military service and reflect great credit upon himself, the 5th Special Forces Group, and the United States Army.
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