The President of the United States takes pleasure in presenting the
SILVER STAR MEDAL to
Cpl ERNEST F. DETORA, Jr.
United States Marine Corps
For service as set forth in the following
" The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Corporal Ernest F. Detora, Jr., United States Marine Corps, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as a Squad Leader with Company L, Third Battalion, Third Marines, Third Marine Division (Rein.), FMF, in connection with combat operations against the enemy in the Republic of Vietnam. On 21 August 1967, Corporal Detora's platoon was assigned the mission of assisting a convoy which had been ambushed south of Thon Son Lam in Quang Tri Province. As the relief unit advanced along National Route Nine, the Marines suddenly came under intense automatic weapons, mortar and recoilless rifle fire from a well-entrenched force of North Vietnamese Army Regulars. Reacting instantly, Corporal Detora aggressively maneuvered his squad forward and deployed his men in advantageous positions from which they could deliver suppressive fire against the hostile fortifications. With complete disregard for his own safety, Corporal Detora repeatedly exposed himself to the enemy fire to control his men and pinpoint targets. Observing that a supporting tank had been hit by a recoilless rifle round, Corporal Detora quickly located the enemy weapon position and fearlessly mounted the tank to direct the crew's return fire. Ignoring the enemy fire around him, he steadfastly remained in his dangerously exposed position on top of the tank and directed a heavy volume of 90-mm. tank fire which quickly silenced the enemy weapon. His heroic and timely actions in the face of extreme personal danger were an inspiration to all who observed him and contributed immeasurably to the accomplishment of his unit's mission. By his selfless courage, outstanding leadership and unswerving devotion to duty, Corporal Detora upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and of the United States Naval Service."