Roy M. Wheat

Roy M. Wheat

Infobox Military Person
name= Roy Mitchell Wheat
born= birth date|1947|7|24
died= Death date and age|1967|8|11|1947|7|24
placeofbirth= Moselle, Mississippi
placeofdeath= KIA in Quang Nam Province, Republic of Vietnam
placeofburial=


caption= Roy M. Wheat, Medal of Honor recipient
nickname=
allegiance= United States of America
branch= United States Marine Corps
serviceyears= 1966-1967
rank= Lance Corporal
commands=
unit= 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines]
battles= Vietnam War
awards= Medal of Honor Purple Heart
laterwork=

Roy Mitchell Wheat (July 24, 1947– August 11, 1967) was a United States Marine who was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism in Vietnam in August 1967.

Biography

Roy Wheat was born on July 24, 1947 in Moselle, Mississippi. He attended public schools in Ellisville, Mississippi; leaving high school in 1965, after two years.

In September 1966, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps at Jackson, Mississippi. Wheat then reported to Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, South Carolina. He underwent recruit training with the 2nd Recruit Training Battalion, after which he completed special infantry training with the 1st Infantry Training Battalion, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Upon completion of infantry training, he was promoted to private first class in February 1967.

Private First Class Wheat arrived in Vietnam in March 1967, and was assigned duty as a rifleman with Company K, 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division. His unit participated in numerous combat operations, including Operation DeSoto, Duc Pho District, Quang Ngai Province; and Operations Webster, Arizona, Butler and Gem in Quang Nam Province. He was promoted to lance corporal in June 1967.

While assigned, with two other Marines, the mission of providing security for a Navy construction battalion crane and crew operating along Liberty Road in the vicinity of Dien Ban District, Quang Nam Province on August 11, 1967, LCpl Wheat was killed by multiple shrapnel wounds received when he unintentionally triggered a well concealed antipersonnel mine.

After warning his fellow Marines when he unintentionally triggered a concealed anti-personnel mine, Wheat hurled himself upon the mine, absorbing the impact of the explosion with his own body.

His medals and decorations include: the Medal of Honor, the Navy Commendation Medal, the Purple Heart with one Gold Star, the National Defense Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal with two bronze stars, the Vietnamese Military Merit Medal, the Vietnamese Gallantry Cross with Palm, and the Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal.

Medal of Honor citation

The President of the United States takes pride in presenting the MEDAL OF HONOR posthumously to
LANCE CORPORAL ROY M. WHEAT UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS
for service as set forth in the following CITATION:

:For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a fire team leader with the First Platoon, Company K, Third Battalion, Seventh Marines, First Marine Division, in the Republic of Vietnam. On August 11, 1967, Corporal Wheat and two other Marines were assigned the mission of providing security for a Navy construction battalion crane and crew operating along Liberty Road in the vicinity of the Dien Ban District, Quang Nam Province. After the Marines had set up security positions in a tree line adjacent to the work site, Corporal Wheat reconnoitered the area to the rear of their location for the possible presence of guerrillas. He then returned to within ten feet of the friendly position, and here unintentionally triggered a well concealed, bounding type, antipersonnel mine. Immediately, a hissing sound was heard which was identified by the three Marines as that of a burning time fuse. Shouting a warning to his comrades, Corporal Wheat in a valiant act of heroism hurled himself upon the mine, absorbing the tremendous impact of the explosion with his own body. The inspirational personal heroism and extraordinary valor of his unselfish action saved his fellow Marines from certain injury and possible death, reflected great credit upon himself, and upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave life for his country .

/S/ LYNDON B. JOHNSON

In memory

;U.S. Navy ship: In 2003, the U.S. Navy named its newest prepositioning ship, the USNS Lance Cpl. Roy M. Wheat, in honor of Roy Wheat. [ [http://www.news.navy.mil/search/print.asp?story_id=9866&VIRIN=&imagetype=0&page=1 "Navy Names Newest USNS Ship for Medal of Honor Recipient",] News Release NNS031003-23, U.S. Department of Defense, 10/3/2003. ]

;The Wall: Roy M. Wheat's name can be found on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on Panel 24E, Row 101.

ee also

*List of Medal of Honor recipients
*List of Medal of Honor recipients for the Vietnam War

References

:Marine Corps
*cite web|accessdate=2008-02-03
url=http://www.tecom.usmc.mil/HD/Whos_Who/Wheat_RM.htm
title=Lance Corporal Roy M. Wheat, USMC
work=Who's Who in Marine Corps History
publisher=History Division, United States Marine Corps

*cite web|accessdate=
url=http://www.usmc.mil/moh.nsf/000003c919889c0385255f980058f5b6/0000033ba9f47a7385255fa600561772?OpenDocument |title= Medal of Honor — LCpl Roy M. Wheat (Medal of Honor citation)
work=Marines Awarded the Medal of Honor
publisher=History Division, United States Marine Corps
archivedate=2007-02-20
archiveurl=http://web.archive.org/web/20070220212451/http://www.usmc.mil/moh.nsf/000003c919889c0385255f980058f5b6/0000033ba9f47a7385255fa600561772?OpenDocument

Persondata
NAME= Wheat, Roy M.
ALTERNATIVE NAMES=
SHORT DESCRIPTION= United States Marine Corps Medal of Honor recipient
DATE OF BIRTH= July 24, 1947
PLACE OF BIRTH= Moselle, Mississippi
DATE OF DEATH= August 11, 1967
PLACE OF DEATH= KIA in Quang Nam Province, Republic of Vietnam


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