SEALS Tomlin, William Michael

The Next Moon
By Ewen Southby-Tailyour, Andre Hue
The Nazi Hunters
By Damien Lewis

John Robertson

Staff member
William Michael
  • UNIT
U.S.N.R. Seal Team 1
  • RANK
Lieutenant Junior Grade
Silver Star
South Vietnam 1970


Silver Star : The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Lieutenant, Junior Grade William Michael Tomlin (NSN: 0-720951), United States Naval Reserve, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in armed conflict against the North Vietnamese and Viet Cong Communist aggressors in the Republic of Vietnam, on 16 April 1970. Lieutenant (Junior Grade) Tomlin was the Assistant Officer in Charge of SEAL Team ONE, Detachment GOLF, ECHO Platoon operating in the SEAFLOAT/Solid Anchor area of operations. After successfully interdicting a Viet Cong resupply and commo-liaison force, inflicting heavy casualties and capturing numerous enemy equipment and documents and while his patrol was being extracted, the enemy ambushed the Medium SEAL Support Craft (MSSC) with heavy automatic weapons fire and B-40 rockets. One rocket hit the boat near Lieutenant (Junior Grade) Tomlin's position, inflicted shrapnel wounds, knocked him down and momentarily stunned him. The blast severed all hydraulic and electrical lines to the starboard engine, knocked out the steering cables, ruptured the fuel cell and ignited a fire in the starboard panel perilously close to the gasoline flowing from the ruptured tank. He ignored his multiple wounds, crawled out of the boat onto the starboard gunwale, thus completely exposing himself to the enemy rocket and automatic weapons fire. Through intense smoke, heat and flames billowing from the damaged hull, he leaned over the side and extinguished the fire. Lieutenant (Junior Grade) Tomlin's actions prevented the ignition of the leaking fuel and numerous friendly casualties. His courage, heroic actions, professional performance and devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.

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