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First Name: Frank

Last Name: Herda

Birthplace: Cleveland, OH, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Army (1784 - present)

Home of Record: Cleveland, OH
Middle Name: Aloysious

Date of Birth: 13 September 1947

Rank: Specialist 4

Years Served:
Frank Aloysious Herda

•  Vietnam War (1960 - 1973)


Frank Aloysious Herda
Specialist Four, U.S. Army
Medal of Honor Recipient
Vietnam War

Specialist Four Frank Aloysious Herda is a former U.S. Army soldier and a recipient of the U.S. military's highest award for valor, the Medal of Honor, for his actions in the Vietnam War.

Frank Aloysious Herda was born on 13 September 1947 in Cleveland, OH. He also joined the Army from that city. On 29 June 1968, he was serving as a Private First Class in Company A, 1st Battalion (Airborne), 506th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division (Airmobile). During an enemy attack that day near Dak To in Quang Trang Province, Republic of Vietnam, Herda covered the blast of an enemy-thrown hand grenade with his body to protect those around him. He survived the blast, although severely wounded, and was subsequently promoted to Specialist Four and awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroic action.

Medal of Honor

Citation: For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Sp4 Herda (then Pfc.) distinguished himself while serving as a grenadier with Company A. Company A was part of a battalion-size night defensive perimeter when a large enemy force initiated an attack on the friendly units. While other enemy elements provided diversionary fire and indirect weapons fire to the west, a sapper force of approximately 30 men armed with hand grenades and small charges attacked Company A's perimeter from the east. As the sappers were making a last, violent assault, 5 of them charged the position defended by Sp4 Herda and 2 comrades, 1 of whom was wounded and lay helpless in the bottom of the foxhole. Sp4 Herda fired at the aggressors until they were within 10 feet of his position and 1 of their grenades landed in the foxhole. He fired 1 last round from his grenade launcher, hitting 1 of the enemy soldiers in the head, and then, with no concern for his safety, Sp4 Herda immediately covered the blast of the grenade with his body. The explosion wounded him grievously, but his selfless action prevented his 2 comrades from being seriously injured or killed and enabled the remaining defender to kill the other sappers. By his gallantry at the risk of his life in the highest traditions of the military service, Sp4 Herda has reflected great credit on himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.


Herda published the juvenile sword and sorcery novel, The Cup of Death: Chronicles of the Dragons of the Magi in 2007.

Honoree ID: 968   Created by: MHOH




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