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Allen E. Weh

Home of record: Albuquerque New Mexico


Silver Star

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Awarded for actions during the Vietnam War

The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Silver Star to Colonel [then Second Lieutenant] Allen E. Weh (MCSN: 0-100765), United States Marine Corps, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action while serving as a Platoon Commander with Company A, Third Reconnaissance Battalion, THIRD Marine Division (Rein.), FMF, in the Republic of Vietnam. During the period 2 to 4 August 1967, Second Lieutenant Weh, leading a Reconnaissance Team of six Marines and one Navy Corpsman, was inserted into the Ashau Valley along the border between South Vietnam and Laos. His mission was to confirm the location of North Vietnamese Army (North Vietnamese Army) units and report weather conditions in advance of a heliborne raid, code names Operation CLOUD. Recognizing the danger of the insertion and the lack of secure landing zones in the target area, Lieutenant Weh chose to rappel his team through the dense jungle canopy into the Ashau Valley on 2 August. This bold maneuver on very dangerous ground resulted in the successful insertion of his team, and kept his critically important mission alive. During the remainder of the day and through the next morning, Lieutenant Weh skillfully led his team through exceptionally difficult terrain to his selected observation point and avoided the heavy North Vietnamese Army activity all around them. Once in position, Lieutenant Weh began continuous and frequent reporting of extensive enemy activity along with the weather conditions critical for the heliborne raid. Having accomplished his mission, he was informed Operation CLOUD had been canceled and he would be extracted in the early morning of 4 August. By then Lieutenant Weh was increasingly aware of the intense enemy build up around his position. As his extraction operation began, he skillfully guided the designated helicopter in on the least dangerous approach to its landing point. The North Vietnamese Army units surrounded the team and opened fire with automatic weapons and rocket propelled grenades. During this same time, he directed the fires of both his team and the supporting attack aircraft. As the helicopter landed, Lieutenant Weh directed six members of his team to board while he and his radio operator remained to coordinate the suppressive fires. In the course of this action his radioman had moved to an exposed position and, without concern for his own safety, Lieutenant Weh quickly moved to pull him to cover. Completing his work, he then ran to the helicopter under enemy fire with his wounded radio operator, ensuring he made it on board. As the helicopter lifted out under intense enemy fire, Lieutenant Weh was hit and fell severely wounded. By his courage, aggressive leadership, and steadfast devotion to duty at great personal risk, Lieutenant Weh was instrumental in accomplishing the team's mission and saving the lives of numerous Marines, thereby reflecting great credit upon himself and upholding the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service.

Action Date: August 2 - 4, 1967

Service: Marine Corps

Rank: Colonel

Company: Company A

Battalion: 3d Reconnaissance Battalion

Division: 3d Marine Division (Rein.), FMF