Rank Insignia Previous Honoree ID Next Honoree ID

honoree image
First Name: Robert

Last Name: Pruden

Birthplace: Saint Paul, MN, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Minneapolis, MN
Middle Name: Joseph

Date of Birth: 09 September 1949

Date of Death: 29 November 1969

Rank: Staff Sergeant

Years Served: 1967 - 1969
Robert Joseph Pruden

•  Vietnam War (1960 - 1973)


Robert Joseph Pruden
Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army
Medal of Honor Recipient
Vietnam War

Staff Sergeant Robert Joseph Pruden (9 September 1949 - 29 November 1969) was a U.S. Army soldier who was posthumously awarded the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his actions in the Vietnam War.

Robert Joseph Pruden was born on 9 September 1949 in Saint Paul, MN. He joined the Army from Minneapolis, MN in 1968. On 29 November 1969, Pruden was serving as a Staff Sergeant in the 75th Ranger Infantry Regiment (Airborne), Americal Division. On that day in the Quang Ngai Province of the Republic of Vietnam, Pruden was killed in a firefight with enemy forces. For his heroic actions during the battle, he was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

Medal of Honor

Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. S/Sgt. Pruden, Company G, distinguished himself while serving as a reconnaissance team leader during an ambush mission. The 6-man team was inserted by helicopter into enemy controlled territory to establish an ambush position and to obtain information concerning enemy movements. As the team moved into the preplanned area, S/Sgt. Pruden deployed his men into 2 groups on the opposite sides of a well used trail. As the groups were establishing their defensive positions, 1 member of the team was trapped in the open by the heavy fire from an enemy squad. Realizing that the ambush position had been compromised, S/Sgt. Pruden directed his team to open fire on the enemy force. Immediately, the team came under heavy fire from a second enemy element. S/Sgt. Pruden, with full knowledge of the extreme danger involved, left his concealed position and, firing as he ran, advanced toward the enemy to draw the hostile fire. He was seriously wounded twice but continued his attack until he fell for a third time, in front of the enemy positions. S/Sgt. Pruden's actions resulted in several enemy casualties and withdrawal of the remaining enemy force. Although grievously wounded, he directed his men into defensive positions and called for evacuation helicopters, which safely withdrew the members of the team. S/Sgt. Pruden's outstanding courage, selfless concern for the welfare of his men, and intrepidity in action at the cost of his life were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit upon himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.

Medals and Awards

Medal of Honor
Purple Heart

Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Robert Joseph Pruden's name is inscribed on Panel 16W - Line 102.

Death and Burial

Staff Sergeant Robert Joseph Pruden was killed in action on 29 November 1969. He is buried at Fort Snelling National Cemetery in Minneapolis, MN.

Honoree ID: 1062   Created by: MHOH




Honoree Photos

honoree imagehonoree imagehonoree image

honoree imagehonoree image

honoree image