Private First Class, U.S. Army
Company A, 3d Battalion (Airborne), 503d Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade,
Date of Action: December 27, 1967


The Distinguished Service Cross is presented to Gary Ralph Schwellenbach, Private First Class, U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in action in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving as a platoon aidman with Company A, 3d Battalion (Airborne), 503d Infantry, 173d Airborne Brigade. On 27 December 1967, during a heliborne assault into an enemy held landing zone, Corporal Schwellenbach's unit was taken under heavy enemy automatic weapons and sniper fire. Although seriously wounded shortly after arriving on the landing zone, Corporal Schwellenbach continued to aid the wounded. With complete disregard for his own safety, he moved among the wounded in the open area of the landing zone which was receiving the most intense enemy fire. Moving his comrades t cover he was wounded a second time. Refusing medical aid for himself, he continued his mission. He received a third and fatal wound while administering aid to a wounded man. The actions of Corporal Schwellenbach saved the lives of many wounded troopers and his indomitable spirit encourage all who witnessed his acts. Corporal Schwellenbach's conspicuous gallantry, extraordinary heroism and intrepidity, at the cost of his life, are in the highest traditions of the United States Army and reflect the utmost credit upon himself and the armed forces of his country.

Department of the Army, General Orders No. 57 (October 17, 1968)

Home Town: Chico, California


DSC Awardees