Snell, Robert Michael, CPT

Fallen
 
 Photo In Uniform   Service Details
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Last Rank
Captain
Last Service Branch
Field Artillery
Last Primary MOS
1193-Field Artillery Unit Commander
Last MOS Group
Field Artillery (Officer)
Primary Unit
1969-1969, 1st Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment
Service Years
1966 - 1969

Field Artillery

Captain



Two Overseas Service Bars


 Last Photo   Personal Details 


Home State
Texas
Texas
Year of Birth
1944
 
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Casualty Info
Home Town
Fort Worth
Last Address
Lamesa

Casualty Date
Jun 14, 1969
 
Cause
Hostile, Died
Reason
Multiple Fragmentation Wounds
Location
Thua Thien (Vietnam)
Conflict
Vietnam War
Location of Interment
U.S. Military Academy West Point Post Cemetery - West Point, New York
Wall/Plot Coordinates
22W 049

 Official Badges 




 Unofficial Badges 

Artillery Shoulder Cord


 Military Association Memberships
Vietnam Veterans Memorial
  1969, Vietnam Veterans Memorial [Verified] - Assoc. Page

 Photo Album   (More...


 Ribbon Bar

Parachutist (Basic)

 
 Unit Assignments
Military Assistance Command Vietnam MACV2nd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment101st Airborne Division 1st Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment
  1966-1966, 1193, Airborne School
  1967-1968, Field Advisory Element MACV
  1969-1969, 2nd Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment/HHB
  1969-1969, 101st Airborne Division
  1969-1969, 1st Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  1967-1968 Vietnam War/Counteroffensive Phase III Campaign (1967-68)
  1968-1968 Vietnam War/Counteroffensive Phase IV Campaign (1968)
  1968-1968 Vietnam War/Counteroffensive Phase V Campaign (1968)
  1968-1968 Vietnam War/Tet Counteroffensive Campaign (1968)
  1968-1968 Vietnam War/Tet Counteroffensive Campaign (1968)
  1969-1969 Vietnam War/Tet 69 Counteroffensive Campaign
  1969-1969 Vietnam War/Summer-Fall 1969 Campaign
 Colleges Attended 
United States Military Academy
  1962-1966, United States Military Academy
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

This is to Certify that
The President of the United States of America
Takes Pride in Presenting


THE
DISTINGUISHED SERVICE CROSS
to
Robert Michael Snell

   
Comments/Citation

The President of the United States of America, authorized by Act of Congress, July 9, 1918 (amended by act of July 25, 1963), takes pride in presenting the Distinguished Service Cross (Posthumously) to Captain (Field Artillery) Robert Michael Snell, United States Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 2d Battalion, 320th Artillery, 101st Airborne Division. Captain Snell distinguished himself on 14 June 1969 while serving as an artillery liaison officer to the 327th Infantry. In the early morning hours, an intense mortar attack followed by a ground assault was launched against Fire Support Base Berchtesgaden. When the first enemy rounds hit, several personnel were injured and in need of immediate medical attention. Captain Snell, with complete disregard for his own safety, moved fifty meters from his protected bunker through the heavy volume of enemy mortar fire to assist the wounded. He carried one wounded soldier back to the safety of the bunker and was going out the bunker door to retrieve another man when a round impacted at his feet and mortally wounded him. Captain Snell's unselfish dedication to his fellow soldiers was directly responsible for saving the life of the man he had carried to safety. Captain Snell's extraordinary heroism and dedication to duty, at the cost of his life, were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the United States Army. HQ USARV GO 166 Jan 19 70


Mike was born in Fort Worth, Texas the son of Mr and Mrs. Robert Bruce Snell. "Mike Snell was a very unusual young man. As red-blooded American as they come, he often reminded me of the early pioneers who came to found a great nation," his hometown newspaper, The Lamesa Press-Reporter, editorialized following his death, "The Mike Snell I knew was as plain as apple pie. A skinny youngster who wanted desperately to be a quarterback, but who lacked the native talent to be the star, he nevertheless became a reserve with more fortitude per pound than ever graced the turf at Lamesa High…the kind of boy every family dreams of raisin…Mike was a professional soldier who died at the pinnacle of his profession. He packed more love of country and more dedication to its preservation into a few short years than most of us will in a lifetime."


Mike Snell grew up in Lamesa, graduated from the U.S. Military Academy, West Point, NY, in 1966, and during his second tour of Vietnam, was an artillery captain with the 101st Airborne Division at the time of his death June 14, 1969.


His action early that morning earned him the Distinguished Service Cross, posthumously. Serving as artillery liaison officer to the 327th Infantry, Fire Support Base Berchtesgaden was attacked by an intense mortar assault, followed by intense ground assault. Snell moved 50 meters through intense enemy fire to assist the wounded. He carried one wounded soldier back to safety and was going out the bunker door to retrieve another man when a round impacted at his feet and mortally wounded him. His unselfish dedication saved the life of the man he carried to safety. Snell's first tour in Vietnam was December 1967-December 1968. His second tour began April 1969.


In a letter to his parents on September 1, 1968, during his first tour of Vietnam, he wrote "You know it probably is stupid. Why should I feel compelled to endure the worst of Vietnam. I could lose the game. I just don't want to die at 75 years and look back on nothing. This is very strong in me. I inherit it from you. I guess a feeling of independence is one of the greatest things I've got. That and broad mindedness. No doubt where that came from, Old Man. I guess I just want to live a little unusual. I'm satisfied so far. But from here on come The Golden Years." Permian Basin Vietnam Memorial

   
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