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First Name: Hammett

Last Name: Bowen

Birthplace: Jacksonville, FL, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Jacksonville, FL
Middle Name: Lee

Date of Birth: 30 November 1947

Date of Death: 27 June 1969

Rank: Staff Sergeant

Years Served: 1965 - 1969
Hammett Lee Bowen, Jr.

•  Vietnam War (1960 - 1973)


Hammett Lee Bowen, Jr.
Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army
Medal of Honor Recipient
Vietnam War

Hammett Lee Bowen, Jr. was born on 30 November 1947 in LaGrange, GA. He was a Staff Sergeant in the U.S. Army and was posthumously awarded the U.S. military's highest award for valor - the Medal of Honor - for his actions in the Vietnam War.

Bowen joined the Army from Jacksonville, FL, and on 27 June 1969 was serving as a Staff Sergeant in Company C, 2d Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division. On that day in Binh Duong Province, Republic of Vietnam, Bowen covered the blast of an enemy-thrown hand grenade with his body to protect those around him. His heroic self-sacrifice earned him the Medal of Honor.

Medal of Honor

Citation: S/Sgt. Bowen distinguished himself while serving as a platoon sergeant during combat operations in Binh Duong Province, Republic of Vietnam. S/Sgt. Bowen's platoon was advancing on a reconnaissance mission into enemy controlled terrain when it came under the withering crossfire of small arms and grenades from an enemy ambush force. S/Sgt. Bowen placed heavy suppressive fire on the enemy positions and ordered his men to fall back. As the platoon was moving back, an enemy grenade was thrown amid S/Sgt. Bowen and 3 of his men. Sensing the danger to his comrades, S/Sgt. Bowen shouted a warning to his men and hurled himself on the grenade, absorbing the explosion with his body while saving the lives of his fellow soldiers. S/Sgt. Bowen's extraordinary courage and concern for his men at the cost of his life served as an inspiration to his comrades and are in the highest traditions of the military service and the U.S. Army.

Vietnam Veterans Memorial

Staff Sergeant Hammett Lee Bowen's name is inscribed on Panel 21W - Line 21.

Death and Burial

Staff Sergeant Hammett Lee Bowen, Jr. was killed in action on 27 June 1969. He is buried at Restlawn Memory Gardens in his birth city of LaGrange, GA, in Camellia Garden, Lot 512B.

Honoree ID: 901   Created by: MHOH




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