Private First Class, U.S. Army
Company C, 1st Battalion (airborne), 503d Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade (Separate),
Date of Action: November 11, 1967


The Distinguished Service Cross is presented to Gary Francis Shaw, Private First Class, U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in connection with military operations involving conflict with an armed hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam, while serving with Company C, 1st Battalion (Airborne), 503d Infantry, 173d Airborne Brigade (Separate). Private First Class Shaw distinguished himself by exceptionally valorous actions on 11 November 1967 as radio operator of an airborne infantry company conducting a search and destroy mission near Dak To. The unit was moving down a ridgeline covered with thick bamboo when it was savagely attacked by a North Vietnamese battalion firing mortars, rockets and automatic weapons. Heavy casualties were suffered by the lead platoon, and Private Shaw immediately volunteered to go to the aid of his wounded comrades. Braving withering enemy fire, he raced from one clump of bamboo to another as he advanced seventy-five meters down the hill to where the stricken paratroopers lay. With bullets striking all around him, he began to pull the wounded from the killing zone and carry them up the hill to safety. He saw one casualty fall in an exposed area while attempting to crawl from the ambush site unassisted. Ignoring exploding mortars and grenades, Private Shaw moved to the man and dragged him to the company's defensive perimeter. He then returned to the base of the ridge and killed at least six of the assaulting North Vietnamese with fierce rifle fire as other members of his unit rescued the remaining wounded. He was instantly killed while gallantly covering their withdrawal. Private First Class Shaw's extraordinary heroism and devotion 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 US Army, Vietnam, General Orders No. 1487 (April 2, 1968)

Home Town: Toledo, Ohio


DSC Awardees