Johnston, Donald Ray, SP 4 Fallen
 
 TWS Ribbon Bar
 
 Photo In Uniform   Service Details
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Last Rank
Specialist 4
Last Service Branch
Infantry
Last Primary MOS
11C-Indirect Fire Infantryman
Last MOS Group
Infantry (Enlisted)
Last Unit
1968-1969, 1st Cavalry Division
Service Years
1968 - 1969
Unofficial US Army Certificates
Cold War Certificate



Specialist 4



One Overseas Service Bar


 Last Photo   Personal Details 

139 kb

Home State
Georgia
Georgia
Year of Birth
1947
 
Casualty Info
Home Town
Columbus
Last Address
Columbus

Casualty Date
Mar 21, 1969
 
Cause
Hostile, Died
Reason
Multiple Fragmentation Wounds
Location
Tay Ninh
Conflict
Vietnam War/Unspecified Operation
Location of Interment
Fort Benning Post Cemetery - Fort Benning, Georgia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
29W 104

 Official Badges 

Infantry Shoulder Cord 1st Cavalry Division


 Unofficial Badges 

Cold War Medal


 Military Association Memberships
Legion Of Valor
  1969, Legion Of Valor - Assoc. Page

 Photo Album   (More...


 Ribbon Bar

Combat Infantryman 1st Award


 
 Unit Assignments
1st Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment1st Cavalry Division
  1968-1969, 1st Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment/D Troop
  1968-1969, 1st Cavalry Division
 Combat and Operations History
  1968-1969 Vietnam War
  1968-1969 Cold War
  1968-1969 Vietnam War/Counteroffensive Phase VI Campaign
  1969-1969 Vietnam War/Tet 69 Counteroffensive Campaign
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

Donald R. Johnston (November 19, 1947 – March 21, 1969) was a United States Army soldier and a recipient of the United States military's highest decoration—the Medal of Honor—for his actions in the Vietnam War.

Biography

Johnston joined the Army from his birth city of Columbus, Georgia, and by March 21, 1969 was serving as a specialist four in Company D, 1st Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division. On that day, in Tay Ninh Province, Republic of Vietnam, Johnston smothered the blasts of three enemy-thrown explosives with his body, sacrificing his life to protect those around him.

Johnston, aged 21 at his death, was buried at the Fort Benning Post Cemetery in Georgia.

For his heroism, the main recruit processing building at the 30th Adjutant General in Fort Benning is named after him.

medal of honor image

Medal of Honor

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sp4 Johnston distinguished himself while serving as a mortarman with Company D, at a fire support base in Tay Ninh Province. Sp4 Johnston's company was in defensive positions when it came under a devastating rocket and mortar attack. Under cover of the bombardment, enemy sappers broke through the defensive perimeter and began hurling explosive charges into the main defensive bunkers. Sp4 Johnston and 6 of his comrades had moved from their exposed positions to 1 of the bunkers to continue their fight against the enemy attackers. As they were firing from the bunker, an enemy soldier threw 3 explosive charges into their position. Sensing the danger to his comrades, Sp4 Johnston, with complete disregard for his safety, hurled himself onto the explosive charges, smothering the detonations with his body and shielding his fellow soldiers from the blast. His heroic action saved the lives of 6 of his comrades. Sp4 Johnston's concern for his fellow men at the cost of his life were in the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.

   
Comments/Citation
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