Rank Insignia Previous Honoree ID Next Honoree ID

honoree image
First Name: Robert

Last Name: Burke

Birthplace: Monticello, IL, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Marines (present)

Home of Record: Chicago, IL
Middle Name: Charles

Date of Birth: 07 November 1949

Date of Death: 17 May 1968

Rank: Private First Class

Years Served: 1967-1968
Robert Charles Burke

•  Vietnam War (1960 - 1973)


Robert Charles Burke
Private First Class, U.S. Marine Corps
Medal of Honor Recipient
Vietnam War

Robert Charles Burke (7 November 1949 - 17 May 1968) was a Private First Class in the U.S. Marine Corps who was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism in Vietnam in May 1968.

Burke was born on 7 November 1949, in Monticello, IL. While still a student at Monticello High School, he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve in Chicago, IL, on 17 March 1967. Burke was discharged to enlist in the regular Marine Corps on 16 May 1967.

Upon completion of recruit training with the 1st Recruit Training Battalion, Recruit Training Regiment, Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, CA, on 20 July 1967, he was transferred to the Marine Corps Base, Camp Pendleton, CA. He completed individual combat training with Company Q, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Infantry Training Regiment, in August 1967, and was promoted to Private First Class on 1 September 1967. From September 1967 until January 1968, he was a student with the Motor Transport School, Student Company, Schools Battalion. This was followed by duty as a motor vehicle mechanic with Headquarters and Service Company, 5th Military Police Battalion, 5th Marine Division, Camp Pendleton.

In February 1968, he was transferred to the Republic of Vietnam where he served with Company I, 3rd Battalion, 27th Marines, 1st Marine Division. He was killed in action on 17 May 1968, while on Operation Allen Brook with Company I, in the hamlet of Le Nam, Go Nai Island, Southern Quang Nam Province.

Medal of Honor

The President of the United States in the name of The Congress takes pride in presenting the MEDAL OF HONOR posthumously to


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 for service as a Machine Gunner with Company I, Third Battalion, Twenty Seventh Marines, First Marine Division in the Republic of Vietnam on 17 May 1968. While on Operation ALLEN BROOK, Company I was approaching a dry river bed with a heavily wooded treeline that bordered the hamlet of Le Nam (1), when they suddenly came under intense mortar, rocket propelled grenades, automatic weapons and small arms fire from a large, well concealed enemy force which halted the company's advance and wounded several Marines. Realizing that key points of resistance had to be eliminated to allow the units to advance and casualties to be evacuated, Private First Class Burke, without hesitation, seized his machine gun and launched a series of one man assaults against the fortified emplacement. As he aggressively maneuvered to the edge of the steep river bank, he delivered accurate suppressive fire upon several enemy bunkers, which enabled his comrades to advance and move the wounded Marines to positions of relative safety. As he continued his combative actions, he located an opposing automatic weapons emplacement and poured intense fire into the position, killing three North Vietnamese soldiers as they attempted to flee. Private First Class Burke then fearlessly moved from one position to another, quelling the hostile fire until his weapon malfunctioned. Obtaining a casualty's rifle and hand grenades, he advanced further into the midst of the enemy. Observing that a fellow Marine had cleared his malfunctioning machine gun he grasped his weapon and moved into a dangerously exposed area and saturated the hostile treeline until he fell mortally wounded. Private First Class Burke's gallant actions upheld the highest traditions of the Marine Corps and the United States Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life for his country.


Medals and Awards

Medal of Honor
Purple Heart
National Defense Service Medal
Vietnam Service Medal
Vietnam Military Merit Medal
Vietnam Gallantry Cross
Vietnam Campaign Medal

Vietnam Veterans Memorial

The name Robert Charles Burke is inscribed on Panel 61E - Line 024.


Robert C. Burke Memorial Park in Monticello, IL, his hometown, is named in his honor.

Death and Burial

Private First Class Robert Charles Burke was killed in action on 17 May 1968. He is buried at Monticello Cemetery in Monticello, IL.

Honoree ID: 907   Created by: MHOH




Honoree Photos

honoree imagehonoree imagehonoree image

honoree imagehonoree image

honoree image