Dwight W. Galda ’64

Dwight W. Galda

Dwight Galda
Class of 1964
2nd Battalion (Airborne), 501st Infantry, 101st Airborne Division, USARV

Bronze Star w/V for heroism during a night ground and mortar attack by a battalion-sized enemy force. Realizing the defending force was significantly outnumbered he immediately adjusted both artillery and mortar counter-battery fire to neutralize the intensity of the enemy barrage. Without regard for his own safety he moved under the increasing hail of mortar, small arms and automatic weapons fire to check every position along the perimeter in order not to be penetrated. Upon seeing a number of soldiers wounded by mortar fragments andsmall arms fire, he administered immediate first aid, moved them to a more sheltered location, and plugged holes in the perimeter with the little reserves available. He continued to adjust fires during the entire attack eventually silencing the enemy guns..

Air Medal w/V (OLC) for gallantry while confronting the enemy. Two battalion companies were in heavy contact with a large enemy force on the high ground. Neither unit could accurately fix the enemy positions because of the dense foliage, topography and triple canopy jungle. Captain Galda immediately took up position in a light observation helicopter (LOH) and provided fire direction to supporting artillery. With arrival tactical air and other aviation resources, he advanced through a hail of small arms, automatic weapons and RPG fire to mark several positions for effective delivery of ordnance. The aircraft was hit several times. The enemy held their positions despite accurate placement of the munitions, and he again went in at tree top level under intense enemy fire and marked the targets for diesel drums drops which broke the enemy resistance and caused them to flee, as both battalion companies advanced up the hill.