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Matthew Leonard
Birth: Nov. 26, 1929
Eutaw
Greene County
Alabama, USA
Death: Feb. 28, 1967
Tay Ninh, Vietnam

Vietnam War Congressional Medal of Honor Recipient. He served in the United States Army during the war in Vietnam as a Platoon Sergeant in Company B, 1st Battalion, 16th Infantry, 1st Infantry Division. He was awarded the CMOH for his bravery near Suoi Da in the Republic of Vietnam on February 28, 1967. His citation reads "For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. His platoon was suddenly attacked by a large enemy force employing small arms, automatic weapons, and hand grenades. Although the platoon leader and several other key leaders were among the first wounded, P/Sgt. Leonard quickly rallied his men to throw back the initial enemy assaults. During the short pause that followed, he organized a defensive perimeter, redistributed ammunition, and inspired his comrades through his forceful leadership and words of encouragement. Noticing a wounded companion outside the perimeter, he dragged the man to safety but was struck by a sniper's bullet which shattered his left hand. Refusing medical attention and continuously exposing himself to the increasing fire as the enemy again assaulted the perimeter P/Sgt. Leonard moved from position to position to direct the fire of his men against the well camouflaged foe. Under the cover of the main attack, the enemy moved a machinegun into a location where it could sweep the entire perimeter. This threat was magnified when the platoon machinegun in this area malfunctioned. P/Sgt. Leonard quickly crawled to the gun position and was helping to clear the malfunction when the gunner and other men in the vicinity were wounded by fire from the enemy machinegun. P/Sgt. Leonard rose to his feet, charged the enemy gun and destroyed the hostile crew despite being hit several times by enemy fire. He moved to a tree, propped himself against it, and continued to engage the enemy until he succumbed to his many wounds. His fighting spirit, heroic leadership, and valiant acts inspired the remaining members of his platoon to hold back the enemy until assistance arrived. P/Sgt. Leonard's profound courage and devotion to his men are in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service, and his gallant actions reflect great credit upon himself and the U.S. Army." (bio by: Don Morfe) 
 
Burial:
Shadowlawn Memorial Park *
Birmingham
Jefferson County
Alabama, USA
Plot: Sec 4, Lot 45 [unmarked]
*Former burial location
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Don Morfe
Record added: Jan 29, 2003
Find A Grave Memorial# 7127210
Matthew Leonard
Added by: Ron Moody
 
Matthew Leonard
Added by: John "J-Cat" Griffith
 
Matthew Leonard
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Dennis Ison
 
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