b. 01/03/1945 Stockton, California. d. 02/12/1969 Phuoc Long Province, Vietnam.
DATE OF MOH ACTION: 02/12/1969 Phuoc Long Province, Vietnam.
Robert R Leisy MOH
Leisy, from Seattle, Washington, was a University of Washington graduate, commissioned a second lieutenant through Army Infantry Officer Candidate School. By December 2, 1969, he was serving as a platoon leader in Company B, 1st Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division. During a firefight on that day, in Phuoc Long Province, South Vietnam, during Operation Toan Thang IV he used his body to shield a fellow soldier from the blast of an incoming rocket-propelled grenade. Severely wounded, Leisy refused medical attention until others had been treated first. He succumbed to his wounds and was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions.
He received the award posthumously (presented to his family) from Vice President Spiro T. Agnew at the Old Executive Office Facility in Washington DC on December 16, 1971.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. 2d Lt. Leisy, Infantry, Company B, distinguished himself while serving as platoon leader during a reconnaissance mission. One of his patrols became heavily engaged by the fire from a numerically superior enemy force located in a well-entrenched bunker complex. As 2d Lt. Leisy deployed the remainder of his platoon to rescue the beleaguered patrol, the platoon also came under intense enemy fire from the front and both flanks. In complete disregard for his safety, 2d Lt. Leisy moved from position to position deploying his men to effectively engage the enemy. Accompanied by his radio operator he moved to the front and spotted an enemy sniper in a tree in the act of firing a rocket-propelled grenade at them. Realizing there was neither time to escape the grenade nor shout a warning, 2d Lt. Leisy unhesitatingly, and with full knowledge of the consequences, shielded the radio operator with his body and absorbed the full impact of the explosion. This valorous act saved the life of the radio operator and protected other men of his platoon who were nearby from serious injury. Despite his mortal wounds, 2d Lt. Leisy calmly and confidently continued to direct the platoon’s fire. When medical aid arrived 2d Lt. Leisy valiantly refused attention until the other seriously wounded were treated. His display of extraordinary courage and exemplary devotion to duty provided the inspiration and leadership that enabled his platoon to successfully withdraw without further casualties. 2d Lt. Leisy’s gallantry at the cost of his life are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit on him, his unit, and the U.S. Army.
BURIAL LOCATION: EVERGREEN-WASHELLI MEMORIAL PARK, SEATTLE, WASHINGTON.
SECTION O, LOT 266, GRAVE 4.
LOCATION OF MEDAL: FAMILY.