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Kelly Neidigh


Silver Star

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Awarded for actions during the Invasion of Grenada

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Staff Sergeant Kelly Neidigh, United States Marine Corps, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as a Helicopter Machine Gunner on an CH-46 Medevac Helicopter Pilot in Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron TWO HUNDRED SIXTY-ONE (HMM-261), Twenty-Second Marine Amphibious Unit conducting combat operations on the Island of Grenada in support of Operation URGENT FURY, on 25 October 1983. During the afternoon hours while conducting an armed reconnaissance mission for ground forces, a section of AH-1T (TOW) Cobra gunships was taken under fire by anti-aircraft artillery, forcing one helicopter down behind enemy lines. Responding to a request for a rescue helicopter, Gunnery Sergeant Neidigh manned his .50 caliber machine gun as the aircraft maneuvered past a known anti-aircraft position. After landing at the crash site, Gunnery Sergeant Neidigh spotted a helplessly wounded pilot attempting to crawl toward the aircraft with heavy enemy machinegun fire hitting around the zone and with total disregard for his own safety, Gunnery Sergeant Neidigh unhesitatingly exited the aircraft, voluntarily exposing himself to enemy fire and fearlessly helped the injured pilot safely to the rescue helicopter. By his undaunted courage, gallant action, and steadfast devotion to duty in risking his own life in order than another might live, Gunnery Sergeant Neidigh reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and of the United States Naval Service.

Action Date: October 25, 1983

Service: Marine Corps

Rank: Gunnery Sergeant

Company: Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 261 (HMM-261)

Division: 22d Marine Amphibious Unit