Born: December 14, 1944
West Point, New York
Rank: Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army,
U.S. Senior Advisor Group, IV Corps, Military Assistance Command.
Location of action: Chau Doc Province, Republic
Date of action: January 31 and February 1,
Medal received from: President Lyndon Johnson, January 16, 1969
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk
of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Staff Sergeant Dix distinguished himself by exceptional heroism while serving as a unit adviser.
Two heavily armed Viet Cong battalions attacked the providence
capital city of Chau Phu, resulting in the complete breakdown
and fragmentation of the defenses of the city. Staff Sergeant Dix, with
patrol of Vietnamese soldiers, was recalled to assist in the
defense of Chau Phu. Learning that a nurse was trapped in a
house near the center of the city, Staff Sergeant Dix organized a relief
force, successfully rescued the nurse and returned her to the
safety of the Tactical Operations center.
Being informed of
other trapped civilians within the city, Staff Sergeant Dix voluntarily
led another force to rescue eight civilian employees located
in a building which was under heavy mortar and small arms fire.
Staff Sergeant Dix then returned to the center of the city. Upon approaching
a building he was subjected to intense automatic and machine
gun fire from an unknown number of Viet Cong. He personally
assaulted the building, killing six Viet Cong and rescuing two
The following day Staff Sergeant Dix, still on his own volition,
assembled a 20-man force and, though under intense enemy fire,
cleared the Viet Cong out of the hotel, theater and other adjacent
buildings within the city. During this portion of the attack,
Republic of Vietnam Army soldiers, inspired by the heroism and
success of Staff Sergeant Dix, rallied and commenced firing upon the
Viet Cong. Staff Sergeant Dix captured 20 prisoners, including a high-ranking
Viet Cong official. He then attacked enemy troops who had entered
the residence of the Deputy Province Chief and was successful
in rescuing the official’s wife and children.
Staff Sergeant Dix’s
personal heroic actions resulted in 14 confirmed Viet Cong killed
in action and possibly 25 more, the capture of 20 prisoners
and 15 weapons, and the rescue of 14 United States and free-world
civilians. The heroism of Staff Sergeant Dix was in the highest tradition
and reflects great credit upon the U.S. Army.
Drew Dix is the first enlisted man in Special Forces to have
been awarded the Medal of Honor. He received a direct commission
to first lieutenant and retired with the rank of major after
serving twenty years in the army--many of those in unconventional
Following retirement from the Army, Dix continued to work in
support of government-sponsored programs, and he owned and operated
an air service in the Alaskan interior. He has worked as a consultant
in both the private and public sectors in the areas of security
and special operations.
In September 2002, as Alaska’s deputy
commissioner for homeland security, he was chosen to head the
state’s Task Force on Homeland Security.
His 2000 autobiography, “The Rescue of River City,”
is the story of Dix’s medal-winning experience as a counter-terrorism
expert in the Army.
Read an except from
Drew Dix's interview.